How To Improve Team Productivity – Below are 12 Simple Tips To Look Over
Increased productivity occurs when a team works well together, is a good match, and respects one another. Conversely, if there is friction between team members, productivity and morale suffer.
In this post, we will go over a few suggestions that will improve the productivity of your team and a few resources to expand your knowledge and skills.
Let’s get started!
1. Define a Common Goal and Communicate It
For a team to become productive, they must understand what’s expected. Without an understanding, there is no direction and no goal to reach. You’ll get poor results, and your team won’t be to blame.
You want to set realistic and achievable goals while making them something worthwhile. It’s not enough to just set a goal. Your goal must be shared and discussed with the whole team.
2. Identify Strengths and Weaknesses
To have a productive team, you must understand the strengths and weaknesses of each team member. With this understanding, you can place each team member in a role that matches their strengths and avoid placing them in roles where they are weak.
Team members may have the skills you need but may lack people skills, and that’s a problem. If team members work directly together, make sure that they are compatible. Team members that don’t get along won’t be very productive.
You want to put the best candidate for each position and ensure that team members work well together.
When you match the strength of each team member with a role that is a good fit, you are building a strong, robust, and productive team.
3. Micromanaging Your Team
Micromanaging may reduce productivity. Your goal is to ensure the process is completed accurately, on time, and within your budget.
People have different work habits, and if you constrain them, you could be slashing productivity. So instead, try this approach. Give leeway to your team to work without micromanagement, and productivity may improve.
If your goal is reached, then that’s great. If not, step in to coach your team to reach the goal, look for reasons that caused the team to fall back, address them, and try again.
4. Give Credit Where Credit Is Due
Praise your team when they perform well! Unfortunately, many managers don’t give praise. Their concern is that if they always tell their employees they are doing a great job, they will have to reward them with a raise. This may have some merit to it but at the same time, not giving praise makes employees feel unappreciated.
Appreciation goes a long way. When you tell employees that you appreciate their work, sometimes that’s all they need to stay motivated.
When you praise, don’t just say, “Thanks, good job. Instead, take a couple of minutes to tell the employee what they did and that you appreciate it.
For example, Bob, I just wanted to take a few minutes to thank you for dealing with the shipment that was going out at 5 PM yesterday. You took the time to ensure it was correct and on the truck before leaving your shift. I appreciate your work ethic and dedication, Thank you, and keep up the good work.
5. Give Raises
When it comes to raises if you have a strong, productive team, wouldn’t you want to care for them and keep them happy, so they will continue to work with you?
Having a strong team is a blessing. However, managers and business owners sometimes don’t know what they have until they lose the entire team or key employees. They find it costs them more money in lost time and productivity than paying their former employees a little extra when they look back. Now, they have to start over to replace those employees. There is no guarantee they will find people with the same experience or expertise.
6. Provide the Tools Your Team Needs To Succeed
You should provide your team members with the tools to succeed and do their job well.
Invest in the tools you need. You will increase productivity and boost employee morale since they have the tools to be more productive while making their jobs easier.
For large investments, you will want to take your time to do your research and get feedback before investing.
For example, suppose you are looking to reduce errors and improve shipping and receiving. In that case, you may be considering a warehouse management system, which can be a substantial investment. Before diving in, you will want feedback from your team, and you want them to be involved in the decision-making process. If moving ahead, you will also want your team involved during the implementation.
7. Listen to Your Employees
Take the time to listen to your employees. Don’t always view employee concerns as whining and nagging and complaining. Although this is the case in many instances, there may be times you may discover an underlying problem.
When an employee has a concern take the time needed to address the issue. Write down the details of their concern, take some time to think about it, see if the concern has merit, and develop a plan to solve the issue. If you discover that there isn’t merit, then at least you have confirmed it’s not a problem. Whether you found the matter creditable or not, let the employee know you looked into it.
Either way, speak with the employee and tell them the result. Then, the employee will know you’re listening to their concerns, which goes a long way even if no changes were made.
8. Encourage Breaks
As managers, we all want more productivity, but overworking your employees will get you nowhere. On the contrary, stress, and overwork lead to less productivity, bringing morale down.
It’s important to care for your employee’s well-being. An employee will work harder for a boss that genuinely cares for them.
9. Clarify Roles and Tasks
You may have assigned each team member a specific role, but you must identify and define those roles and ensure that all team members know them.
For example, if you have someone leading a certain task, the other team members should know that this person is the lead on this particular process.
You’ll also need to define the roles of other team members that don’t have leadership positions.
For example, this person is in charge of the dayshift process, and this person is in charge of the afternoon process. Of course, the procedure is the same for both days and afternoons, but putting someone in charge of the function could make them feel important and be more engaged.
10. Roles and Their Importance
Each team member can understand the value of their role and how it affects the company when you emphasize how important their work is to you.
For example, if your team members work on an assembly line, basically, they’re all doing the same thing. Still, each part of the line may have a different function; explaining the importance of the role they are performing achieves a better understanding.
11. Offer Support
Your team will feel empowered and work harder for you if you give them support and have their back, rather than for someone who shows no interest in their work or keeps their distance. Additionally, you can discuss making the employee’s jobs easier and more productive.
You may be able to empower them and motivate them to work harder for you and engage them in their work when they know you support them.
12. Encourage Team Members To Help Each Other
A team’s strength can be improved when its members help one another. That’s what being part of a team is all about. So encourage your team to collaborate.
Often, team members come to me and complain about another team member not pulling their weight. This kind of behavior is unfortunately common.
Some team members are not team players and focus only on themselves, trying to do the least amount of work possible.
As a manager, it’s your responsibility to speak to this employee about the issue. It may be necessary to replace the member if coaching and discussion do not improve the team member’s performance. One member taking advantage of the others and not pulling their weight is unfair.
Team members become stronger when they help each other, building their skills and confidence while improving productivity.
How Do You Know if Productivity Has Improved?
The above are tips to help you improve your team’s productivity, but how do you know what works and what doesn’t?
A benchmark is necessary to determine if something is improving or not. So, naturally, you want to do more of what’s working, and less of what’s isn’t.
When testing, you should only test one thing at a time. By testing more than one factor, you won’t be able to determine for sure what caused the change.
The first step is to collect the data to establish your benchmark. For example, if you run a production facility, you could use items produced per man-hour to measure productivity.
If you have a benchmark, you can try the tips in this article one at a time and track your results. Then, try another tip to improve your results even more. Keep doing it until you’ve run out of tips. By the time you have tested and implemented all the tips, you should significantly improve your team’s productivity.
- Define a Common Goal and Communicate It.
- To have a productive team, you must understand the strengths and weaknesses of each team member.
- If team members work directly together, make sure that they are compatible.
- Give leeway to your team to work without micromanagement, and productivity may improve.
- Praise your team when they perform well!
- When it comes to raises if you have a strong, productive team, wouldn’t you want to care for them and keep them happy, so they will continue to work with you?
- Provide the Tools Your Team Needs To Succeed.
- Take the time to listen to your employees.
- When an employee has a concern take the time needed to address the issue.
- Encourage Breaks.
- You may have assigned each team member a specific role, but you must identify and define those roles and ensure that all team members know them.
- Your team will feel empowered and work harder for you if you give them support and have their back, rather than for someone who shows no interest in their work or keeps their distance.
- Encourage Team Members To Help Each Other.
- Test and Track Results.
Next, you’ll find a few resources to expand your knowledge about improving teamwork and staying current.
The links lead to search results, and that’s by design, so you have the best information at your fingertips whenever you visit this page.
Books are another excellent source of information to expand your knowledge and skills to improve your team’s productivity.
A tip for saving time with non-fiction books is you don’t have to read the book from cover to cover, but instead, you can go to the chapter that appeals to you.
When I checked the latest Google search results related to improving your team’s productivity, I found a couple you may be interested in. You can view them from the link below.
Improve Team Productivity And Efficiency
Revolutionize And Activate The Potential In Your Team
By Antonio Guedjian
Kaizen Strategies for Successful Organizational Change
Enabling Evolution and Revolution Within the Organization
By Michael Colenso
Suppose you’re interested in taking your skills and knowledge to the next level. Why not consider taking a course that can help you expand your knowledge and expertise.
You can take online courses, learn at your own speed and review the information as needed. Take a few minutes to browse the online courses to determine if they appeal to you.
Whenever I’m researching a topic, I check out the news. In my opinion, if the media covers a story, then it has some merit to it, and it’s worth a few minutes of my time.
I like using Google’s News site because I have access to the most recent and archived stories covered by the media. So why not take a few minutes to see what’s in the news related to teambuilding.
YouTube is a popular video-sharing site. You can find videos on virtually any topic on the site.
While watching a video on YouTube, you’ll see a list of related videos. In my experience, many of those are ones I had never considered, so YouTube allows me to expand my knowledge with those related videos. They may be of interest to you as well.