Working Hard or Hardly Working?
How many times have you groaned to fellow colleagues that you are “getting nowhere fast” or, “there’s just not enough hours in the day”? There must be hundreds of phrases to describe activity, but not so much productivity. Let’s bring it back to basics; productivity is supposedly the effectiveness and efficiency of production. On the pursuit of achieving productivity.
Management managing management…
I want to talk about how we can understand the difference between being active i.e. Being busy doing pretty much nothing, and being productive; working smart and effectively as oppose to working hard feeling burnt out half way through your working day. It is a common misconception by organisations that being busy means that teams are working at full capacity.
Management often focus on the goal of production on a weekly/ monthly basis; rightly so. Monitoring employees using figures allows management to give an objective opinion on their team’s performance; Have they exceeded targets? Great, let’s look at rewards and bonuses. On the other hand, is more support needed for the employees? Should management be implementing more focused training and development plans for staff before the event?
How do I know if I’m being productive… or un-productive? As I mentioned above, management should be monitoring performance accordingly, therefore they can address issues on what’s going well or areas for improvement. In the meantime, how can you monitor this yourself?
Ask yourself this; you make a phone call which lasts 18 minutes. The goal of this call is to sell your companies latest product or service. The colleague sat to the left of you is also selling the same product or service and is able to make two phone calls in the time it’s taken for you to make one; and you were unable to produce a sale in this time. It’s time to take a step back and evaluate your strategy. Sure, we could blame the customer; the product wasn’t right for them or they said they will call back another day but these boundaries and hurdles should have been identified minutes into the call enabling you the time to divert your attention to a new call with a customer.
How can I improve my productivity?
- Undergo a makeover of your to-do list. Make an “Imperative results” list. Avoid endless reams of unnecessary tasks and focus on what will make a real difference to your day.
- Could that meeting have been a simple email?
- Avoid procrastination by taking regular breaks. Organise your day managing your time effectively.
The moral of the story is; if you are finding you are being proactive but not getting the results then now is the time to take a step back and re-evaluate your strategy. Do you need to make alterations to your current approach?