By Karina Robson
We all know what it’s like to feel like you need way more than just 24 hours in a day. Balancing trying to get enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, exercising and getting everything done at work, all while maintaining relationships, can seem like too much to juggle for anyone. The more we put on our plates, the shorter a 24-hour day begins to feel. If you’re looking at increasing productivity for your small business, it’s essential you give staff the tools to look after their wellbeing.
Small business employees face a lot of pressure, as more often than not, big decisions rest on their shoulders. These easy to implement and cost-effective productivity strategies are necessary ways to ensure your staff are feeling supported and motivated to get the job done. But, starting with a good company culture as a base is essential.
What are the elements of good company culture?
According to Harvard Business Review, good company culture rests on a few major principles:
- Providing support for colleagues and team members
- Forgiving mistakes
- Fostering an inspiring and optimistic environment
- Emphasizing the meaningfulness of everyone’s work
- Treating everyone with respect, gratitude, trust and integrity
Now you have your foundation, check out these productivity strategies you can implement that will keep your staff feeling motivated, happy and healthy.
1. Create a Positive Atmosphere
Cultivating a supportive and positive environment, where employees feel safe and happy, is one of the most essential parts in boosting productivity and efficiency. Job satisfaction is higher at businesses that have a positive company culture, which in turn allows for higher efficiency levels and dedicated employees. Staff who are certain they can trust in their seniors and have support, are naturally more inclined to be more committed to their jobs.
2. Equip Your Staff with the Right Tools
The tools your team have to work with have a direct link to business performance and overall productivity levels. Giving employees the technology to do their jobs fast and seamlessly will not only speed up workflow, but it will decrease stress levels.
When looking into what tools to invest in, think about three main categories; time and productivity tracking, collaboration and communication. These three pillars are all essential parts in forming a strong and positive team foundation. Choosing the right software that is accessible and easy to use will make getting tasks completed quickly and will translate to a streamlined workflow.
3. Put the Emphasis on Employee Wellness
Placing a high importance on employee wellness will be sure to benefit both parties in the long run. Not only will it keep your staff happy, it will boost your bottom line with higher levels of productivity. No business can expect to foster a positive culture, without healthy employees.
Business leaders should ensure that staff have the resources and tools on-site to live their healthiest lives. This includes stocking the office kitchen with necessities (tea, coffee, bread and condiments), encouraging staff to take their breaks and enjoy a healthy lunch, or even starting social groups or events within the office to promote strong relationships and support networks.
4. Use Positive Reinforcement
Encourage, motivate and reward. Be clear with your goals and celebrate when staff achieve results. Even if you need to deliver constructive criticism, it is important to highlight the positive things employees have achieved. Celebrate employees that go above and beyond their role in order to cultivate a sense of fulfillment and motivation for others. When staff see high productivity being rewarded, it will give them the boost to increase their own targets.
5. Be a Good Listener
Research by CultureHQ found 86% of employees believed leaders who listen to their staff directly contribute to a positive workplace culture. Allowing staff to feel heard, valued and appreciated will also naturally allow for a stronger work ethic to form. Fostering an environment where staff feel like they can speak freely, also means you have direct insight into what is working within the company, and what needs working on.
Boosting employee productivity is important, but it doesn’t have to come at a detriment to staff’s wellbeing. Sometimes pushing staff to their limits without forming a strong company culture, a foundation of trust and providing the right tools, is a recipe for disaster. Or at the very least, a low employee satisfaction rating.