Take the time to audit and go through your business processes today. Do you find some areas in which you know you absolutely have to improve? Perhaps there are certain processes you consider to be problematic or you find to need the most improvement for more efficiency? One of the common issues that often affect businesses consistently is in line with its productivity.
Whether you’re a new and up-and-coming business or one that’s been in the industry for quite some time now, there are always so many ways to improve your productivity. Productivity brings in a domino effect towards other sectors of your business: sales improve, customers are more satisfied, and you become more trustworthy as a business, in general.
Putting these together, you’ll be able to have a higher chance to beat the competition. In today’s business arena where the competition is cutthroat, it’s essential to master your business productivity.
So, if you’re eager to improve your business’ productivity, here are some of the three of these strategies to increase your business productivity:
Learn How To Delegate Tasks
If you’re working on the upper management of your business, perhaps one of the most common problem areas you’re going to face has to do with the delegation of tasks. It may be tempting to want to do everything by yourself to get it over with. Or, perhaps you just don’t know how to delegate tasks at all.
While you may think it’s helping your business, it could actually be one of the reasons why your productivity is slowed down. You’ll never see your staff improve if you don’t learn how to delegate tasks for them to accomplish. Otherwise, when you’re taking a chunk of the work for yourself, you may have members of the team that are doing less than they ought to and have so much time on their hands, while others who are struggling to accomplish tasks for the day.
It can be a challenging change at first, but once you actually get to it, you’ll start to reap the benefits of increased productivity and greater work output.
Here’s how you can delegate effectively to create more positive business’ advantage:
Learn to let go. This is one of the most difficult things to do by an upper management or even by the bosses themselves, simply because they’re just so afraid to have other people do the tasks they’re accustomed to doing themselves.
But, once you feel your productivity now suffers, then that should be a telling sign that it’s time to delegate. You can start small, with delegating the smaller tasks, and then gradually work your way up towards other non-confidential job functions that you know other members of the team can successfully perform.
Study your employees’ strengths. When you delegate, you need to make sure you’re assigning new job functions based on a certain employees’ strengths. Every employee has their own strengths and weaknesses and if you want to increase the likelihood of success, the right job has to be delegated to the right employee. Otherwise, if there’s a mismatch, then productivity still suffers.
Teach new skills and re-train staff. It may cost your business more to equip your employees more skills or to re-train them, but it actually works to your advantage as well. The more skills and knowledge your employees have, then this means that they can become better assets to your company. They can do more, simply because they know more.
Teaching new skills and re-training staff also means equipping them to learn how to use new technology, one of the many being an autodialer, to their advantage. This can keep your employees on top of their job, so they can efficiently perform the new tasks that have been delegated to them to accomplish.
It will take time for your employees to learn new things, but consider this as an investment for the long run.
Now that you’ve got these insights on how you can delegate tasks, here are some of the advantages apart from increased productivity that your business can enjoy once you begin this process of delegation:
It increases the knowledge and skills of subordinates, so the team isn’t just dependent on those ‘seasoned’ employees or perhaps upper management. In addition, in the event of an employee’s absence or leave, operations will not have to suffer since other people in a team ca still perform the task of the absent member for the time being.
It builds the skills of the upper management, because as leaders, one of the most important things they have to accomplish is managing a team in a way they’re supervising the job done without shouldering everything on behalf of the employees.
It creates an environment of trust, while at the same time boosting employees’ morale. It shows you trust your employees they’re capable enough of doing the job functions you once held. When employees’ morale improves, this also increases productivity as they’re more inclined towards doing more than what’s expected of them to be accomplished.
Improve Employee Engagement
When employees are happy with your company and they find it personally rewarding to perform better, their propensity to improve their productivity in every working day improves. It’s important to analyze employee engagement. This will help you find out your employment engagement level and understand them better.
Improving employee engagement also means having minimal supervision over them, and giving them the right tools to exercise autonomy to complete their jobs. As much as possible, don’t micromanage your employees. Otherwise, they may feel like as if they’re controlled too much to a point that you don’t trust in their ability to do well for your business.
With that in mind, here are powerful steps on how you can improve your business’ employee engagement:
Equip them with the right tools, particularly those that are now automated, one of the many being is virtual phones. Today there are many companies who offer this kind of communication options like Call Cowboy. Virtual phones can be used for better call tracking. For example, your employees used to do tasks manually. But now, there are upgrades that can make for faster, more efficient and accurate performance through automation. Invest in these and provide it to your employees, so they feel they’re more competitive now and equipped to perform their job functions.
Give them meaningful work to do. Every single job function in your business should feel meaningful. However, when things are too routinary, or if your employees only feel like they’re given the same miniscule tasks every single day, then in the long run, they may begin to feel like their job function doesn’t have that much meaning.
Do a regular assessment of your employees and look for some meaningful or more difficult tasks that you can let them do. This also goes along with the tip on delegation. You can do more when you no longer do everything by yourself because you trust in your employees to be well equipped to do these jobs for you.
Provide training and coaching to your employees. Even if your employees have been with you for so long now, this doesn’t mean they can’t make use of coaching from time-to-time. There’s always room for improvement. Plus, coaching boosts your employees’ engagement when they’re given this opportunity to train and improve their skills, without having to spend for it themselves.
Get social. Being successful in the workplace doesn’t only mean work, work, work. Of course, you need to give employees the opportunity to collaborate and socialize with each other. This means giving room for employee activities like outings and company parties.
When you give employees the time to connect with each other, it also makes them feel more comfortable with the people they’re working with. When they report back to work the next Monday, you’re guaranteed to find better and happier employees, who also do more within that given work day.
Employees are more engaged with their jobs when they feel like they’re a part of a family, and there’s no disconnect.
Recognize employee achievement. Have you made it a part of your company culture to recognize a job well done made by your employees? Or have you been stingy with this? If you belong to the latter group then it’s not too late.
Employees are more likely to do more and give back to the organization they’re a part of when they feel like their hard work and efforts are being recognized. You don’t have to reward them monetarily all the time (although that won’t hurt, too). But it can be as simple as posting those who went beyond their quota of the month in your company memos, among others. Or, you can give out gift certificates to these employees that do well.
These may be added expenses but the returns it brings back to your company are greater. That ten-dollar gift certificate at a salon for the female employee of the year is nothing compared to the hundreds of dollars in terms of sales that they may contribute when they feel like their efforts are recognized loud and proud.
Distractions in the workplace are the ultimate productivity killer. It only takes one little glimpse on a mobile phone for someone to secretly doze off and spend 15 minutes going through their social media account. If 10 employees do this (yourself, included), then just imagine what this can do to hurt your productivity.
Of course, you can’t just confiscate every employee’s mobile phone upon entry to your workplace, as this is unjust. They also need to be reachable by their families, in case of any contingency. So, the perfect strategy you can do is to create a balance of keeping your employees focused, while giving them ample time to breathe and take regular breaks. When you allow them this time, then it reduces the likelihood of the entire team to check their personal mobile phones when they’re supposed to be doing their jobs instead.
What else can you do to minimize these distractions? Here are some helpful tips:
Avoid multitasking. It’s a common misconception to think that multitasking will enable you to do more. Actually, it slows down productivity and increases the chances of losing your focus, when you have to attend to so many tasks all at once.
You can get more done, if you focus on one task first before moving on to the next. Have an order of priority by creating a to-do list and tackling the bigger and most important tasks first, before moving on to the smaller ones.
Take breaks. Make it a company culture to take breaks. Typically, these are short 20-minute breaks each, one in the morning and another in the afternoon and an hour’s break for lunch time.
Don’t be tempted to skip these breaks so you can continue finishing a task instead. Doing so is counter-productive. You need to give your mind that time to relax from focusing too much on heavy work-related tasks. And, if you’re facing your screen for too long, your eyes will also need to rest.
Taking breaks can give your mind and body quick re-charge so you can spring back and be more productive with your job, especially for work from home cases where the working time is a bit different from the rigid schedules followed in the office.
Make it company culture not to disturb someone you see is working so hard. If you’re done working on something and you see there’s someone else in the team that’s focused on a task and seems so engulfed with it, don’t disturb them.
It’s easy for someone to lose focus just because there was another person disturbing them. Especially when you know that that certain employee is doing something that’s highly analytical, then wait for later before you catch their attention. If it’s not important to talk to them right now and take that person away from their chain of thought, then certainly it can wait until later.
When it comes to running a business, time is money. This is the core point of productivity. Your business should be able to do more and produce more, for the same time spent at work. If you’re not able to achieve this, then you’re not maximizing your full potential. Not only does this affect your competitive factor, but it may also mean you’re wasting company resources and assets. If you think you’ve been in dire need of changes to improve your business’ productivity, take heed of the tips above.
It’s not too late to create that change in your business operations so eventually, you’ll begin to reap the effects of the efforts you’ve made to improve your productivity.
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