Productivity in the Work Place – Lessons from the Gym
Trying to measure employee productivity is often met with groans of being micro-managed, or treated like robots. It’s a necessary evil for businesses to ensure they maximise the performance of their most expensive overhead – their people, so why does the idea of measuring productivity as a management tool get so much bad press?
What if we monitored our business goals like our gym goals?
I’m a regular gym goer. Over the years advances in technology have developed some great motivational tools to help us get fitter and healthier simply by encouraging us to set ourselves targets and focus on the numbers. These devices make us record, monitor and improve our strength and stamina, sweating it out on the treadmill or pushing weights.
In my gym there are monitors on the walls, where everyone who’s logged into the app can compare, see how they’re doing, who else is in the gym, and how they’re getting on too. Completely openly, and transparently! Calories burned, distance run, percentage daily target achieved and heart rate monitored are up there on the TV screens for all to see.
Engaging is motivating
In this leisure environment it gets people talking to each other, making new friends, and generating a sense of camaraderie and healthy competition. Motivating us to actually push that bit harder to get to the next level, because we see the benefits the regular workouts are bringing to those who put the extra effort in. We are all secretly aspiring to get the perfect body, or achieve optimum health.
Bringing the team together
So why can’t we achieve this same culture in business. Why shouldn’t productivity measurements inspire people to work together more closely to achieve a common goal that, at the end of the day, will benefit everyone in job satisfaction and job security? Your business would also benefit from the more intangible bonuses of motivating greater achievement, encouraging team spirit, and seeing the collaboration of more experienced staff developing the less experienced.
This requires the right tools and the right leadership skills to turn the negative into a positive. Just getting some dashboards up on the screens instead of the distraction of boring soaps, or BBC news droning monotonously in the background, will begin to get people engaged, sitting up and taking notice. Add a few regular words of encouragement and some healthy challenges to reach short term objectives, and it will be a small step to turning a lethargic workplace into a thriving hive of pro-activity.
If you feel you could benefit from external support to resolve your frustrating business issues, or expert advice to develop your management systems, processes and teams, Alluxi Consulting offers business consulting and executive development programmes. We illuminate the hidden opportunities to optimise the productivity of your existing resources and maximise your profits. An initial exploratory discussion can quickly uncover what you need to move your business forward.