When it comes to scaling your business, facilitating growth, and increasing revenues, there’s nothing more important than maintaining consistent productivity at work. Being efficient means satisfactory customer service and content clients that in return leads to greater income and ultimately higher profits. As a small business owner, you need to focus on how to produce quality work in a shorter period of time and reduce the amount of time spent on unnecessary tasks.
Especially if you are running a business in a challenging industry, the market is so unforgiving that there’s very little room left for mistake or errors. To improve productivity, you need to devote time to your employees and develop a working environment that is conducive for everyone. Along with new tools and methods aimed to boost work performance, you should have a thriving business that is always moving forward in no time. Check out these tried and tested ways to increase productivity in a business.
# 1: Delegate
Most business owners are afraid to delegate tasks with their employees. Although delegation always comes with a risk, keep in mind that increasing responsibility is vital to augment the morale and job satisfaction of your people. Aside from keeping their morale high, employees should be given responsibilities to improve their talents, skills, and leadership capabilities.
Employees who are given accountabilities often feel valued and appreciated by letting them take over things and duties that are essential to the company. It also gives them a sense of achievement and professional growth. By taking on risks and overcoming difficulties, you are helping them to stand on their own feet. When delegating tasks to your people, don’t be afraid to trust them but remember to:
Create a list of jobs or duties that can be delegated with employees. Match the responsibility with the capabilities and talent of your staff. Give significant assignments to those who are successful in their field.
# 2: Overcome Distractions
Social media, internet articles, fashion write-ups, latest Hollywood news, and addictive games – these are just some of the most common distractions at work. A five-minute browsing on Facebook can lead to 30 minutes of wasted time. The same thing goes when playing a one-round of a mobile game, that can result in multiple hours of non-stop frolicking. Taking a break from a mundane work is okay, but it has its own limitations, or else distraction comes into play.
Having a no-phone policy at work is not practical, and stopping your employees from gossiping with each other is inhuman, but you can develop rules to minimize if not totally avoid distractions. Give them regular short breaks in which they are free to do whatever they want to do. This makes them more comfortable at work and gives a breathing room when the tough gets going. You could also:
- Practice reward for every task completed, 15 minutes of browsing when work is done.
- Snooze applications whenever possible, especially when doing challenging work.
- Engage in important matters and stay focused on certain projects until finished.
# 3: Be flexible
Continuing with ways to increase productivity in a business is to be flexible and welcome any changes that might happen along the way. Don’t be complacent, but instead be open to new ideas and adapt to trends or technologies that will revolutionize your small business. If you can’t change the way you process transactions, close deals, talk to companies, or market your products, don’t expect others to change either.
On top of welcoming change is the practice of guided flexibility amongst employees. Now, this doesn’t mean that you will favor all requests and approve demands just to make them happy. Flexibility should be offered to give employees the freedom and comfortability they need to produce better work. One good example is allowing your staff to work remotely when possible, a method that has been followed by successful companies worldwide.
- If you don’t want your business to stagnate, be prepared for changes – big or small.
- Consider offering flexible work hours instead of fixed schedules.
- Be the first to discover the latest trends and technologies before competitors.
# 4: Engage in automation
Think about this scenario; your invoice is prepared manually so one of your staff needs to compute and hand write each receipt over and over again in a single day. There’s nothing wrong doing manual invoicing, but wasting time for a single task will do no good for your business. Redundant tasks, if not addressed properly, will lead to lack of progress and unproductivity.
Small businesses often fear automation due to high cost and technicality of usage. But the truth of the fact is, automation doesn’t need to be complicated and expensive. Some software and applications only require upfront fees with no monthly cost, and most of them come with detailed instructions for smooth operations. For longterm success, automate critical areas within your business such as sales, production, marketing, or distribution. See these solutions that could come handy:
- Rubberstamp to automate supplies while managing bills and payment.
- Log entries that are useful for safekeeping business logs and data with analytic functions.
- Marketo which is a cross-platform tool that automates marketing activities.
# 5: Use the right tools
There are many ways to increase productivity in a business but do not forget that without proper tools, your business wouldn’t expedite growth. Tools and equipment serve as your defense against challenges, just like the gun of a policeman trying to chase a criminal. By giving your employees the tools and equipment they need, they are able to perform their duties efficiently leading to increased productivity.
New tools and applications are widely available both online and offline so finding the right device for your trade is easy. High-quality software, modern programs, and high tech equipment allow you to save time so you and your employees can focus more on what matters most – growing your business. These tools should save you by working smarter, not working harder:
- All-in-one printer with the ability to print fast, scan, copy and fax documents.
- Calendar applications such as Calendly to efficiently schedule meetings, tasks, and duties.
- Evernote which is a smart notetaking app to help organize ideas, projects, and to-do lists.