Regardless of the type of business you run, the productivity of your employees is one of the most important elements of its overall efficiency. Not only does productivity affect the quality of their work, but also the retention rates and reputation of the company itself.
Making the smallest of changes can improve all of the aforementioned qualities; happy employees produce better quality work, have increased creativity and are less likely to take days off. Not sure where to get started? Here are five ways you can improve productivity in the workplace and get the best out of your team.
Declutter and clean
First things first, consider how the working environment may be affecting your employees. It should be bright, airy and motivational rather than clinical or cluttered. Have a big clean thing up of the office and remove anything that is of significant distraction. This doesn’t mean throwing away everything in the office, but rather moving the unessential stuff into say, a storage unit to use when next you need it. By doing so, you’ll still have access to any additional belongings that are taking up space in the office but you may still need down the line. Plus, storage units are safe and secure.
This could include paperwork, stock and equipment, which can all cause the office to appear untidy. An unorganised office equals unorganised minds and decluttering is the first step to creating an environment that inspires your team rather than distracting them.
Up your interior
Following a good old clean-out, focus on improving the interior of your office to boost productivity. According to Forbes, 87% of workers would like their employer to offer better office benefits, such as wellness rooms, ergonomic seating and healthy lunch options. Furthermore, 93% of workers in the tech industry said they would stay longer at a company that offered such things. Consider implementing these ideas as well as creating an environment they truly enjoy being in. Artwork, plants and ergonomic desk chairs are a great way to start, adding comfort to what should now be a perfectly clean space. Keep it professional but colourful, as this is sure to impress both your staff and any clients that come in for meetings.
Try to maintain a healthy work-life balance
A big workload is a sign that business is going well, but it may not be great for your employee’s mental or physical health. By demanding too much from your employees and offering little time to relax, they’ll end up having a burnout. Known to be a type of work-related stress, burnout can cause your team to become lethargic, less creative and, of course, unproductive due to exhaustion. Keep any time expectations reasonable and ensure all staff members feel comfortable enough to approach you if they have any worries.
The best way to prevent burnouts is to implement a ‘work hard, play hard’ motto. This could include letting your team blow off steam on a ping-pong table, organising monthly team drinks or a meal, offering flexible hours and giving the option for employees to work from home when required.
It could be as simple as having an employee of the month, but offering some kind of reward is a great way to motivate teams, particularly during busy times. Make sure to give everyone the recognition they deserve too, which could be done at your team meetings or sending around an email to the office thanking particular people who stood out. The reward for employee of the month could be anything from an Amazon gift card to a monetary bonus in their pay packet. Either way, this could give people the push needed to work harder, thus improving both motivation and productivity.
Having a supportive team to lean on makes all of the difference during stressful periods. By initiating some team bonding activities, employees will become more comfortable with each other on a more personal level and therefore ask for help when they’re struggling. Consider giving each team a budget for activities or setting up after-work events to help kickstart a positive relationship between all of your employees. There are a myriad of benefits to having improved relations in the office, including higher retention rates, fewer absences and increased productivity.
As well as using some of the above tips, it’s a great idea to ask your employees what they think the company could do to improve. It’s important that they feel like you’re listening to any potential issues that have arisen; you can do so by putting out an anonymous suggestion box or asking them to fill in a feedback form every so often.
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