What does it mean to boost productivity?
Employee productivity improvement is primarily about the performance of the individual employee. An employee shouldn’t be under- or over-challenged. Finding this balance is often not easy. If the workload is too heavy, frustration sets in. If it is too low, employees may lose interest in their work and look for new opportunities. Therefore, the employer should carefully consider how much and what kind of work is sufficient so that employees are challenged but not overwhelmed.
Improving the working atmosphere
A good working relationship with the employer is of great importance and mainly based on successful communication. The environment affects how employees feel and behave at work. For example, problems should be addressed openly and various solutions considered. Creating a sense of community among the staff enables people to enjoy their work together. Does your workplace offer enough space for joint breaks or meals? Friendships among colleagues improve well-being and allow for better use and development of personal skills. Employees also behave more resiliently when faced with difficulties or challenges in a safe environment, resulting in less absence and sick days.
There are also some basic tips to improve staff morale as a boss:
- Employees should be valued by their employer and the work they do should be appreciated.
- Promotions and bonuses – when deserved: value employees not only for their seniority. Show appreciation for workers’ individual progress as well.
It should also be possible to voice criticism. However, speak it out in a private setting. Make sure to criticise the behaviour (what the person does), not their character (who they are). Always stick to the truth, even if it’ s unpleasant. Listen to the other person’s responses without interrupting and speak your mind afterwards, and make sure the other person understands your point of view.
Always criticise privately and praise in public!
Optimize the workplace
The design of the workplace not only has a great influence on the productivity of employees, but also on their health. Nevertheless, it seems that many companies are clinging to old structures. However, it’s not necessary to invest vast amounts in order to enhance the workplace. Minor changes are often all it takes, to make your employees happy.
For example, no one likes to work in a dark place that lacks daylight. Room should therefore be bright to create good vibes. Below, you can find some other workplace design principles that have been found to improve workers’ wellbeing.
- Flexible workplaces: A promising approach is to offer the possibility of working in different spaces. You may have heard of so-called “hot desking” models, which have already been integrated successfully in many companies. This method does not necessarily find a place in every workplace, but it is worth considering, especially when combined with flexible working hours and/or occasional home office. In this model, several workers share different workplaces in the office.
- Smaller offices instead of one or two large rooms promote concentration and offer fewer distractions. Glass walls, allegedly meant to suggest transparency, cause a lot of stress for the people working inside them.
- Reduce or eliminate noise and distractions from outside. If a room is permanently exposed to noise, you may consider to invest in sound insulation.
- Provide staff with the right tools for their work
- and provide enough space to move around. Ergonomic office furniture helps to prevent pain.
- There should be enough daylight to brighten up the room. This also saves energy costs, as unnecessary illumination can be avoided.
- However, install curtains, blinds or other coverings if a room is constantly bathed in glaring sunlight. Especially when working in front of a monitor or during presentations too much light can be distracting.
- Provide fresh air through proper windows or ventilation
- and use lighter colours to create a welcoming atmosphere.
- Also, plants and flowers make an office look more friendly.
Many external factors contribute to increased productivity of individual employees. A positive working atmosphere and community among colleagues is often the key to well-being. Common rooms for coffee breaks and lunch offer the opportunity to socialise independently of work tasks. Even the design of the workplace influences motivation and productivity. A room filled with daylight, a few plants and several smaller rooms instead of a single large one make working even more pleasant.