Keep your team working efficiently with these tips.
There are plenty of things employees can do on their own to boost productivity at work, from how they plan their day to how they set up your office environment. But employers can also play an essential role in encouraging productivity among staff.
When your employees are more productive, your business will also see the benefits: from higher profits to better customer service. Wondering how to encourage improved productivity at work? Try the following strategies to get the best out of your team.
Offer flexible working solutions
Most employers have had to make adjustments to work-from-home policies throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and many found that allowing employees to choose whether to work in the office, work from home, or a combination of both improved employee job satisfaction.
It’s simple: not everyone works the same way. Some people are more productive when they’re in the office and can bounce ideas off co-workers. Others are more productive when they can be alone in a quiet space without distractions. And most people are at their peak productivity when they have the flexibility to do both at different times and for different projects.
You might also consider offering flexible work hours to accommodate both your early risers and your night owls.
Review internal communication
Good communication and collaboration can boost productivity — but it might take some work upfront to make good intentions a reality.
Start with the technology and tools you’re using. Each person might prefer a different means of communication (email, phone, text, chat rooms, or the good old drop-by). You can set them up for success by making many options available and emphasizing that one isn’t always better than the other.
Set up some training for anyone who’s not familiar with how to optimize emailing. Tips include blocking time to respond to emails (and then not checking your inbox every five minutes), learning how to keep emails short and to the point, and using automation tools when possible. For more, see these 17 Email Management Strategies to Improve Productivity.
Your team may also require a refresher on how to optimize meetings. An estimated $37 billion is wasted each year on unproductive meetings for various reasons: too many meetings, too many people at those meetings, and no clear agenda. To improve the efficiency and value of your meetings, check out these 10 Ways to Facilitate More Productive Meetings.
Provide learning & development opportunities
Sometimes, it might take a team member longer to do something because they don’t know a better way. Offering training opportunities can boost productivity and also empower employees to feel more confident about their work. This could include online courses, in-person hands-on training, or peer-to-peer knowledge sharing within your organization.
Consider company culture
Does your organization value hierarchies and individual success or teamwork and collaboration? Studies show a high-performance environment where employees feel connected and enthusiastic about work can improve engagement, which then increases productivity. Conversely, a competitive culture can hurt productivity by emphasizing personal achievement over team performance.
Assess the office environment
Did you know? People who work in offices with windows and natural light sleep an average of 46 minutes more at night, leaving them more rested and more likely to focus, according to one study.
Some small aesthetic changes could make a significant impact on productivity. Make sure there’s plenty of natural light, add some plants, and consider painting a few walls in colors other than white. Bold hues inspire creativity, while subdued tones can help with focus.
Check the temperature, too. A survey of U.S. workers found that nearly one-quarter of employees say a workplace that’s too hot makes it difficult to concentrate, while 11% said the same about it being too cold. (Evaluating the thermostat might also help save energy and costs, too!)
Stress can cause productivity to plummet. We’ve all experienced low energy or feeling frazzled, and it can take a toll on our work. Encourage employees to take care of themselves and consider offering stress relief or time management courses. Convert a free conference room into a quiet space for a few minutes of rest or meditation during the workday.
Employee recognition is part of this, as well. Constructive criticism, meaningful motivation, and praise for a job well done can go a long way toward boosting morale and improving productivity.
Check out our blog for more ideas on how your organization can recognize and reward employees, support work-life balance, encourage sustainability, and much more. We also offer countless high-quality office products to help enhance productivity. Shop our online catalog now, or contact our local team at (608) 310-4300 to get started!