It’s a challenge every company and workplace faces: How can we get the most out of our day?
There are only eight work hours per day, and five workdays per week in most cases, giving your team 40 hours, more or less, to accomplish as many things as possible. Have you ever wondered how much of that precious time is needlessly wasted or could be used in a more productive manner?
Here are a few suggestions on how to be a leader in making your team more efficient — and productive.
Give your team more authority, responsibility, and a bigger sense of ownership.
People who feel empowered and trusted with projects will work harder, not just for themselves but for their managers and their teams. They’ll want to be proud of the work they do, and they’ll be trying to impress their colleagues in the hope of earning their respect. Feeling ownership and responsibility also changes the way a person looks at tasks: If they know they’re on the hook for how something turns out, they’ll spend more time thinking about the best way to complete a project and might even come up with some really creative ways to solve problems. It’s a win-win!
Identify and delegate tasks based on each person’s strengths and weaknesses.
If you’re working with a decent-sized team, and you’ve spent any amount of time together, you’ll know what people’s skills are, where they can be trusted to make good, quick decisions that will help move things forward, and which tasks are best matched with each person. Dividing project tasks up based on strengths will help boost your team’s confidence on an individual and team level, as everyone is utilizing their talents and abilities in different ways, leading to a stronger whole group and a better outcome. It will also help your team feel like you’ve been paying attention to their hard work, which is a nice way to show appreciation.
Sometimes, bribery is a good thing. People will work harder if they know there’s something in it for them. Whether that’s an individual prize, like a gift card, or something for the group, like a pizza party or other treat, people are motivated when they know they’ll be rewarded for their efforts. If the project at hand is especially arduous or stressful, or if it’s on a rushed deadline and people are feeling the pressure, throw this little offer out and see how it pays off.
Eliminate unnecessary meetings.
Here’s a lesson many workplaces have learned during the COVID-19 pandemic when people couldn’t gather together in conference rooms for long discussions: Sometimes meetings are better as emails. Meetings tend to stop all productivity for a long stretch of time. Getting rid of meetings that could email keeps forward momentum going, allows people to continue about their day, and keeps things streamlined. By only scheduling meetings when it’s essential, everyone gets more of their productive time back.
Provide feedback and praise work well done.
Not everything has to be sunshine and roses all the time, but feedback delivered in a positive, constructive, and uplifting way can help employees crave it instead of dreading it. People want to know they’re doing a good job; if they’re doing something incorrectly, it might take twice as long to complete a task. Pointing out that something could be more efficiently done differently can be a real-time-saver for everyone and can help the employee feel empowered to do better, especially if they’ve been frustrated. And be sure to point out when someone’s doing an excellent job: Little words of encouragement can help keep people focused and energized.
Efficiency means making the most of the available time. Allowing people to play to their strengths, take ownership and feel responsible for their work, and know they’ll be acknowledged for a job well done can go a long way toward motivating people to stay sharp and focused.
If you’re looking to add to your team, contact Debbie’s Staffing. We have decades of experience working with companies just like yours and can help you find the perfect new team member to reach new success levels. Contact Debbie’s Staffing today, and let’s get to work!