Making The Most Of Your Team
Three ways to boost productivity including innovative team building activities, efficient project management, removing distractions and time savers.
It’s an old saying, but very much a truism, that a company or organisation’s biggest asset is its people. It’s also true that it’s important to make the most of this asset in terms of boosting productivity; it contributes hugely to an organisation’s efficiency, and employees doing their jobs more effectively helps morale too.
A few ways to improve productivity:
Staff and Team Building
Fostering a culture of ‘we’re all in this together’ and working as one towards a common objective through team building activities helps staff feel valued and connected to the overall effort.
Showing interest in staff and helping them relate more to colleagues and getting to know others in the same organisation is very worthwhile. It’s particularly helpful in a larger concern where some people in different departments or working from different sites may not interact much on a daily basis.
Socialising is a good way of helping staff relations, but other activities specifically designed to help team building are worth considering especially if activities can be formulated that suit your team building objectives. While time honoured gatherings, such as bowling nights or paint balling days are popular, there are specialist team building companies who can help create an activity specifically suitable for your objectives.
These can range from fun, sociable activities to help people bond and get to know each other to more specific activities where people work in teams to achieve objectives, albeit still with an accent on sociability and enjoyment.
These activities enhance good staff relations which make a huge difference:
- People work well with others with which they empathise
- Motivated staff with good morale work efficiently without getting distracted
- Staff working together and committed to the organisation are more likely to think creatively
The old saying ‘the best way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time’ certainly applies to big projects. Ideally, they should be broken down into more manageable steps and each one given a deadline agreed on by those concerned, and everyone involved should understand the importance of their specific deadline being hit to dovetail with the rest of the project.
This helps prevent people being overwhelmed when a large project is in the offing, keeps communications open, and staff can focus better on a more immediate manageable task with a deadline.
Email and timesavers
Email can be a major distraction. If staff tend to respond to emails as soon as they arrive it can break concentration and flow on the tasks at hand, and far less is achieved than it would if a more disciplined approach to email and other distractions is applied.
A basic principle could be to only check email at certain points in the day; at other times the email software should be closed down to prevent the temptation of reacting when an email arrives.
Staff should be encouraged to adopt basic time saving procedures; rather than ad hoc ‘meetings’ with colleagues, specific times to get together and deal with specifics should be agreed on. Staff should be encouraged to adopt time saving actions where possible; for example, in regularly used software maybe there are some shortcuts that could be used?
Modern software, including popular commercial packages such as Microsoft Office, bristle with time saving features often overlooked by users, so some time spent checking help files and online user tips and advice could save a lot of time and thus boost productivity.
Improving productivity is the holy grail of many commercial concerns as everyone wants their business to operate as efficiently as possible as it inevitably affects the bottom line, and staff can suffer a morale drop if they feel they’re not getting through workloads.