3 Steps to Help Improve Workplace Productivity

Illustration by istockphoto.com
Illustration by istockphoto.com

We’ve all been there — mounting tasks, competing priorities – and sometimes it’s hard to be truly productive.

So, why not implement these three (3) simple and easy ways to help improve your workplace productivity?

1. Flex the sched

Whether it’s 8-5, 9-6, or whatever — get rid of it! What you’ve done, in theory, is to truncate the amount of time your people will actually work.

The 9-5 office culture of the past is dead. Flexibility is imperative to work-life balance, and work-life balance is imperative to increased productivity.

As long as work gets done, it shouldn’t matter where or when it’s accomplished. Recent research found that employees who telework even part of the time are both more engaged and more productive.

Flexible work options vary from telework to compressed work weeks and rotation schedules. Your people have a life, so give them time to live it and they’ll reward you with higher productivity.

2. Lose the cubes

Walls and cubicles are so 90’s!

Sure, they’re nice for semi-privacy in an office, but they’re horrible for collaboration, building relationships, increasing trust and communication – all of which improves productivity.

Yes, we all need quiet space and “crash down” or “huddle” rooms, but use those for meetings as needed, not for standard, every-day work. By having everyone in an open space you remove the walls (no pun intended) that impede productivity.

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3. Don’t dictate

A true leader doesn’t dictate how things are done –they lead by example and solicit feedback and ideas from employees.

Engage your team on how to develop new innovations, solve problems and deliver on your mission. By engaging your employees you’re increasing innovation, building trust and improving productivity.

As the late, great father of modern management, Peter Drucker, once noted, “The productivity of work is not the responsibility of the worker but of the manager.” 

There are way more than just these three easy ways to improve workplace productivity, but they’re a good start. Remember – it all starts and ends with your people – your most lucrative asset.

This was originally published on the Tolero Think Tank blog.

Scott Span, MSOD, is CEO & Lead Consultant of Tolero Solutions, an Organization Improvement & Strategy firm. He helps clients in achieving success through people, creating organizations that are more responsive, productive and profitable -- organizations where people enjoy working and customers enjoy doing business. 

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1 Comment on “3 Steps to Help Improve Workplace Productivity

  1. While I agree with much of what you said, I have to take exception to the notion that losing walls or cubes helps us be more productive. I have worked in several different environments and those with the “open concept” were among the most disruptive. I found that people had difficulty carrying on business such as phone conversations due to the noise level in the area. I mean let’s be honest, who wants to have to keep asking a senior level VP to repeat themselves multiple times? Until we can get people to understand that “open concept” does not mean “license to treat work like a house party” I will gladly keep my walls and hopefully one day my door.

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