Managing and boosting workplace productivity is always a concern for many leaders. Finding the best ways to help motivate employees and keep a pleasant workplace environment can be tricky. Many managers might think that the old-school methods of incentives, required office time and strict deadlines might help give productivity a boost.
Recent research shows that productivity has a lot to do with employees’ state of mind while working. According to a study by University of Warwick, employees who considered themselves happy at work were 12% more productive than those who were unhappy.
Workplace Productivity Tips
Open office concepts, outside and inside noise and employees constantly coming and going create distractions in the workplace and hurt productivity. Here are some ways that can help improve “employees’ state of mind” and in turn, boost workplace productivity:
- Play Music – Allowing employees to play music while working can help them focus better on their tasks. Some skeptics might think that music is actually a distraction for employees, but studies have shown that music in the workplace can help bring workers back to the present moment and hyper focus on the job at hand.
Having headphones and listening to music can help tune out things like typing on keyboards or co-workers on the phone nearby.
There are even curated playlists on music apps that specifically help with concentration and workplace productivity.
- Take Breaks – Breaks throughout the work day can help employees be more productive by giving them a chance to stretch their legs and some much needed mind clearing. Giving employees a chance to step away from their desk can also give them time to recharge and refocus if they are having trouble with a project or are heavily stressed. Some companies take a “team walk” at lunch time to get everyone up and moving.
- Keep Things Organized and Clean – A clear space can help lead to a clear mind and help with productivity. Encourage employees to keep their workspace clean and organized, which can make finding necessary documents and information easier to find. Many companies are moving away from paper documentation and keep digital filing systems. Switching over to digital, with information stored on shared drives, can foster collaboration, clear up the clutter and make finding information much faster and easier. Organizational skills are a must for today’s worker.
- Add Some Greenery – Plant life can help create a more relaxing atmosphere for employees, creating a better workplace environment. In a study conducted in the Netherlands and UK, workers placed in offices where they could see a plant from their desk had a more positive outlook on the air quality of the office, had better concentration, and greater workplace satisfaction. Adding some office-friendly plants, or encouraging employees to have a small plant at their desk, can boost perceptions of the work environment. Don’t forget to water – withering plants can have the opposite effect!
- Love Lists! – Lists can help keep tasks on track, and help visualize how much you and your team have accomplished. Productivity can increase when employees can see how much work they have already done, rather than focus on what still needs to be accomplished.
- Focus On Accomplishments – Building off the idea of creating lists, if you focus on accomplishments, rather than pending tasks, you can boost employee morale, which leads to better productivity. Creating a visual reminder of what already has been done, such as a chart or list, is an effective way of reminding employees of the goals they have already accomplished. This in turn motivates them to pursue more tasks.
- Write Goals Down and Visualize Them – If employees write down their goals, it becomes a reality. Paired with a visual that is viewed daily, they significantly increase their chances of meeting that goal – to the tune of 76%. Read the study by Dominican University for details.
- Encourage Employee Engagement – Collaborative work is considered beneficial for companies. An emphasis on teamwork over individual work has taken over the modern workplace. Encouraging employees to work together and ask one another for help can help create a more positive work culture. This also boosts productivity, as employees are more likely to offer help and get tasks done more efficiently.
The Bottom Line on Workplace Productivity
Boosting workplace productivity essentially comes down to making sure that you employees enjoy their work and the workplace environment. Creating a supportive and welcoming work atmosphere can ensure that employees not only get their own work done, but also help their coworkers accomplish tasks in a timely fashion.
About the Author
Guest Blogger Dave Landry Jr. applies his passion for all things personal finance to helping clients save more of their hard earned money. He’s a personal finance manager, debt relief counselor, and blogger who writes about personal finance topics to help readers with money matters. Dave lives in Southern California with his wife of eight years and three wonderful children.