Each member of a small business's staff has an important role to play, and if an individual isn't working at full capacity, it can quickly have a negative impact on day-to-day operations. Short of firing someone who isn't pulling his or her weight, what can you do as the business owner to boost productivity? These 4 tips will help you help your employees work smarter and harder.
1. Huddle up
A brief huddle in the morning or at the start of each shift is a great way to help employees focus on their most important tasks and get energized. Have each staff member identify their top goal for the day, and let them know how you’ll be there to support them in reaching those goals.
2. Encourage Breaks
It may seem counterintuitive, but encouraging employees to take breaks and facilitating company-wide outings, celebrations, and happy hours can actually help your staff be more productive. The happier your employees are, the harder they’ll want to work when they’re on duty. Consider what makes sense based on your budget, hours, and staff size before adding regular events to the calendar.
3. Help Prioritize
Sometimes, employees can become overwhelmed when they have too many to-dos on their list. When possible, help prioritize which items are most important each day, week, and month. Breaking down tasks into more manageable chunks will help keep the wheels turning and boost productivity.
4. Stop Micromanaging
As the business owner, it’s your responsibility to define goals, help troubleshoot problems, and give guidance when asked for. However, it’s not your job to micromanage. Once you’ve clearly established your expectations, sit back and let your staff do their jobs the way that works best for them. They’ll ultimately be more productive, even if they might not do things exactly the same way you would.
The Bottom Line
Clearly setting goals each day, providing the proper amount of support, giving employees breaks together to team-build, and trusting your staff to do the jobs you hired them to do are all great ways to boost productivity. If none of these strategies make an impact, then it may be time to reevaluate the responsibilities you’ve assigned to individual employees or consider letting go of staff members with chronic performance issues.