One of the most difficult aspects of being a small business owner is motivating your employees to stay productive. Often times, you’re unable to supervise your employees and ensure they’re being productive. In this section, we’ll go over simple life hacks to help your employees become more productive both when you’re around, and when you’re not.
1. Prune Back Meeting Time
While meetings are often inevitable, there are ways to ensure that you and your employees are using meeting time wisely. Provide your employees with a clear written agenda as far in advance of the meeting as possible. When all the participants are prepared and know what the meeting is focused on, meetings are more efficient.
In addition, some companies will implement “No Meeting Mondays.” This doesn’t necessarily have to occur on a Monday. These companies designate a day where they can schedule an entire day of uninterrupted work.
2. Encourage Employees to Take a Break
Although it may seem counter-intuitive, taking a break will help your employees re-focus on the task at hand. Taking a break gives employees much needed time to rest their eyes, move around, and get more blood and oxygen flowing to their brains. In addition, it may help your employees gain a fresh perspective on a complicated work problem. Even just a short, five minute walk will help employees to clear their heads and refocus on their work.
3. There’s an App for That
Unsurprisingly, there are a plethora of smart phone apps designed to improve business productivity. There are apps to aid you and your employees with everything including project management, interoffice communication, organizing information, and waking up on time for work.
4. Quit Obsessively Checking Your Email
Checking, reading, and responding to each email immediately after it hits your inbox is a huge time-waster. Unless you are waiting for something extremely important, try not to keep your email inbox open constantly throughout the day, and encourage your employees to do the same. Try checking your email periodically- every hour or 90 minutes.
If this isn’t possible for your business, try to prioritize emails and give yourself a set block of your schedule to return emails that don’t need to be responded to immediately. Fight the impulse to respond to every email the instant it arrives.
5. Prioritize Your Workload
Start your day by writing yourself a to-do list, and encourage your employees to do the same. By checking things off your list as you complete them, you can leave work feeling more accomplished at the end of the day.
In addition, complete your most arduous or unpleasant task first thing in the morning, rather than delaying it. By accomplishing your most difficult task at the start of the day, you are setting a positive, productive tone for the rest of the day.