Focus on productivity (Not hours worked)
Focus on productivity (Not hours worked). There’s a big focus on remote working this year which has led to us focusing on how productivity is affected while remote working. Remote working teams are no doubt here to stay. So, we think now is the time to ensure you know how to correctly manage your people and adjust your mindset to this new way of working.
We’re going to focus on how productivity is still getting overshadowed by hours worked. Let’s get one thing straight, hours and results are not the same things. There are some employees that can get a huge amount of work done in a typical workday and head out at five. There’s no issue with that. But some who aren’t as productive!
Communication means you’re clear about what you expect from your team. So, deadlines are scheduled, targets will be met etc. If your teams are left to determine deadlines and what to prioritise then you can’t get upset with them when the wrong thing has ended up at the bottom of the pile.
Working from home is new to most people so no one’s got it nailed yet. However, we know that employees will get better. Even a quick discussion with a manager, or with colleagues, can be a great assist.
Managers and employees can discuss what work can wait until the end of the month, and what needs to be done by the end of the day. As employees become more experienced with the concept of remote working, a manager may move this sort of prioritisation to a weekly or even monthly process.
By sorting out this issue you keep team productivity high and reduce confusion. At this point, everyone should theoretically know what they’re doing on that day.
Read on to find out how we sort this issue out in our own office. We operate via a blend of remote and office work and have yet to encounter issues. Not to mention, all in-house operations can be executed remotely too. This means remote working has a limited effect on Crescente’s productivity.
Employees should see rewards for performance, not hours worked. A 2017 study illustrated that while the number of hours people are spending at work has increased from 44.3 to 45.1 between 2015 to 2016, the proportion of one’s day spent on actual work has dropped from 46% of the day to 39% of the day.
If productivity doesn’t have an identity, then it’s hard to really notice it. At Crescente we use work management software Monday.com. It’s not spyware or a way to keep tabs on an employee throughout the day. It’s kind of just a glorified to-do list. They probably won’t like us saying that, but that’s exactly why we use it! It’s simple to get your head around.
The reason it’s good for productivity is that it’s easy to refer to when you need to identify what’s working and what’s not. But as a last case resort who’s working and who’s not. We’re not trying to say that person is out in the garden soaking up some sun, they might be getting too busy answering emails and forget about some of the more important stuff. There are a few things that distract people throughout the day, another study identifying some of the biggest productivity hindrances found 16% was on emails.
So, to make sure your team are really tuned in with your flow it’s a good idea to have a tool like Monday.com. It works in the office as well as out of the office. We know that it’s unrealistic to expect a team to be productive every second of the day. However, at least with these to-do list tools, you can ensure they know what to focus their time on.
Avoid Burnout/ Sustainability
Long hours at work wear people down mentally. All too often, professionals work to 8, 9, or 10 every night and go into the office every day of every weekend. Especially when remote working as there’s no real rush to get home. While these professionals might be increasing their output over the short term, this type of overwork inevitably leads to burnout.
Sustainability and long-term health needs prioritising in today’s world. With our boom in mental health awareness over the last few years there should be no excuse for businesses to demand that sort of labour. It’s better to have a happy worker with sustainable productivity than to be a member away due to mental health struggles. That’s not going to help with productivity!
To conclude, remember to be realistic with your team. Can they complete the project by the deadline without having to work unreasonable hours? Is there anyone else on the team who could help so you could meet the deadline? Can you help them meet their goal? And does your team need and additional training or resources to be successful? If so, we can help you. Get in touch with our Crescente team and we’ll gladly assist you to get to your goals faster.