ExecutiveChronicles|4 Manager Tips to Boost Employee Productivity|Managing an entire company – or even just a small team within a larger organization – can be a daunting task. You not only have to know your products and your industry up and down, but you have to have strong organization skills and effective people skills too. It’s a lot to juggle.
But the results that your team produces rest on your shoulders. So it is up to you to constantly monitor progress and identify ways to improve the effectiveness of your team. Below are three proven tips for business managers to improve employee productivity.
1. Track Everything
If you want to make improvements in your department – or in any area of your life, for that matter – you need to know two things:
- Where you are right now
- Where you want to go
And the best way to know where you are is to measure the results you’re getting, and then quantify and track every aspect of your process.
Now, if you are a manager in a large- or medium-sized company, you probably already have tons of reports and tracking systems already in place. But if you’re a small business owner or manager, your processes might be very simple, or even non-existent.
So get busy tracking your numbers for yourself and for your team.
Start with attendance by using a free time calculator to track your employees time card activities. Then move on and track other data that impacts your bottom line.
If you’re running a restaurant, for example, don’t just track sales and expenses. Itemize every single thing and track your inventory on a daily or even hourly basis. Identify your top-selling menu items at different times of day and different days of the week. Split-test coupon and advertisement designs and track which variations bring more customers through the door.
The data that you need to track will vary depending on your industry, your department’s function and the size of your team. But you get the idea. The best way to measure your productivity is to track all your stats, get frequent reports from your team, analyze them thoroughly and follow up with team members at regular intervals to improve results.
2. Seek Input From Seasoned Employees
To improve your team’s productivity levels, you’re going to have to make some changes.
If you’ve managed anyone for any length of time, you already know that making organizational and procedural changes is a lot easier when you have buy-in from your employees. And the best way to get it is to let them have a say in the changes that you make. They’ll be a lot more likely to implement changes when the ideas were theirs in the first place.
Ultimately, you want your employees to feel like more than just cogs in a machine. Giving them a sense of ownership is a great way to improve motivation and engagement.
Don’t micromanage them to death. Instead, delegate more tasks to them and empower them to make decisions themselves. Let them know that you trust their judgement. But still – hold them accountable! This goes back to tracking results and getting timely reports from your employees so that you can give them feedback and support in real time.
3. Improve the Workspace
The work environment itself is another important factor that impacts employee performance and effectiveness.
Studies have shown that natural lighting and lights in the cooler blue spectrum that mimick overcast daylight boost employee productivity in office environments. Warmer light tends to be a bit too relaxing, and artificial light that casts unnatural or green hues over the workspace tends to have a detrimental effect on productivity and mental health.
Other improvements to the work environment that positively impact employee productivity include keeping the work area clean and uncluttered, providing comfortable ergonomic chairs for desk workers and setting computer monitors at or slightly above eye level.
Managing a team and hitting your department’s objectives isn’t always easy. But it gets easier when you accurately track your numbers, when you provide a productive work environment and when you get your employees to take ownership of their job duties and the results that they produce.