Business leaders, it’s time to take a long hard look in the mirror. This post is all about you and some of the ways you may be killing employee productivity. Whether you realize it or not, your actions are one of the key factors driving workforce engagement, and it’s important to understand how they may affect your people. Do you do any of these four employee productivity killers?
1) You have too many big ideas.
There’s nothing wrong with thinking big – in fact, it’s an important part of your job – as long as at some point you focus on a goal and start working toward it. According to information from the Associated Press, our average attention span has decreased by 50% over the past decade. The effects of a vision-driven leader can have a significant impact on employee productivity. Constantly shifting your focus from one major initiative to another without seeing the previous one through can make it difficult for your employees to put their full potential into any one effort, either because they don’t have time or, even worse, they already expect it’s only a matter of time before you’ll move on to something else.
2) You plan meetings to talk about planning meetings to discuss future meetings.
Nearly half (47%) of respondents to a 2012 Salary.com survey ranked too many meetings as the top workplace time waster. If you’ve spent any time in the business world, you’re likely well-acquainted with the “meeting culture” that seems to permeate every workplace and how it can be a drain on productivity. If you’re a chronic meeting planner, your employees probably already know what it’s like to start making headway on a project only to have their meeting reminder pop up, halting any progress they were making. So, it’s important to only plan meetings when they are absolutely necessary. And remember, a quick email can often be more effective than a meeting anyway.
3) You’re not passionate about the work.
Employee engagement is a major challenge many companies face. A Gallup study on the state of the American workplace found that as much as 70% of workers are not engaged in their work. A key component of engagement is passion. Employees who find purpose in their work are often more engaged and productive. And the same goes for their leadership. If you are not passionate about leading your team and striving to reach goals, your employees will have a difficult time rallying behind you and their commitment to achieving success will wane.
4) You forget to recognize performance.
A 2013 survey by the American Psychological Association found that 50% of workers do not feel valued at work. Recognition has been shown time and time again to be a key factor in employee productivity and engagement. A few minutes in the spotlight every once in a while can be a major confidence builder for your employees because it validates their hard work and will only inspire them to reach for more.