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Running a small business in this era of competitiveness means being conscious of everything – competitors, the economy, internal affairs, and so much more. So you must be on top of everything to make your efforts successful.  

Luck plays a bigger role in external factors, but you have full control over internal matters. Managing these within your company reduces its vulnerability to outside influences and increases its productivity.  

To make matters easy for you, we will explore practical tips and strategies to help you increase efficiency and get the most out of your team. 

5 Things You Can Do for Improving Productivity 

In small businesses, productivity is one of the most critical factors since profitability stems from it. Usually, small companies have limited resources and to earn profits, these limited resources need to be at their highest level of proficiency.  

That said, you don’t have to take an aggressive approach towards this. Even small changes can increase productivity and bring a positive shift in the workplace culture.  Let’s discuss 5 such strategies that are bound to deliver the best results without much effort.  

i. Effective Task Management  

Tasks are atoms of the workflow. By delegating them effectively to your team, you create a productive workflow structure. For this, a little motivation and a preplanned working schedule can go a long way. 

However, at the same time, you don’t also want to overburden your employees, but you want them to reach their full potential. 

Planning tasks require detailing and precision. Most tasks may be repetitive for an employee, so if you structure them accurately once, you might not have to revisit the plan. Here is what you need to do.  

Define Goals 

Every company, big or small, has a goal, and to achieve this goal, multiple teams and individuals work together. Every task they complete becomes a building block for the goal, so people need to know why they are performing the tasks.

This creates relatability and transparency between the employees and management, and employees tend to work hard.  

Define Tasks 

Defining tasks for each employee promotes discipline in a workspace. It helps align the workflow so there is no duplication of efforts or miscommunication. So whatever task is assigned to the employees, it should be clear. Include the following:  

  • Purpose of the task and where it fits in the broader scheme of things. 
  • Small description to cover the “Hows” 
  • “Dos” and “Don’ts” of the task 
  • Priority  
  • Deadline for submission 

This way, you can divide employees’ hours and gain maximum productivity without pushing them too much.  

ii. Create Calendars  

Small businesses are all about hustle – period! To ensure fluidity in the tasks through the departments, document everything and put them on a calendar.  

Calendars are a great way to enable transparency. Tools like Google Calendar let you look at how others have blocked out their time and where you can find time for a meeting. 

They allow employees to allocate their time to tasks and have a visual representation of how they will spend their day. They can also act as a to-do list, where completed tasks are crossed out of the calendar.  

Here is how you can create calendars for your employees.  

Enter Scedules in a Calendar 

  • Enter your employees’ schedules in the calendar. You can list tasks and their times, so there is no overlapping.  
  • Set reminders of submissions and deliverables. 
  • Introduce new projects to let your team know about the tasks along with project milestones. 
  • Schedule meetings and events on the calendar to inform the employees.  

Apart from these, you can also create task calendars manually for a department. You can put details on the sheets to give employees a clear idea of what needs to be done by whom and at what time.   

iii. Measure Productivity with Insights 

To improve productivity, you need to know where you stand with the amount of work your employees put in. As an owner, you would not want employees who are not adding value to your company. However, before declaring someone valuable, you should consider actual data.  

Conduct a Performance Analysis 

To measure performance accurately, compare the set goals with the company’s current outcome. If there is a significant difference, figure out the issues. Make changes and then conduct analysis again. Conduct monthly, quarterly, and yearly performance analyses to ensure improvement.  

Use Productivity Measuring Tools 

Manually conducting performance analysis is hectic and time-consuming. Most successful businesses are using productivity-measuring tools like TimeBee to quantify performances. When you introduce TimeBee from the very start, it can make all the difference.  

It can be helpful with employee, project, and client management, specifically for small businesses. TimeBee has all the features you would expect in the best employee monitoring and productivity tool. It combines a number of time management and employee productivity tools in one solution. 

To analyze employee productivity, it collects data from the websites and apps used by the employee. These websites and apps are rated directly by the owner (in this case, you) as productive, unproductive, and neutral. You can analyze how productive or unproductive your employee has been during the day, week, month, or overall. 

TimeBee provides detailed reports on individual employees, user groups, or your entire organization so that you can analyze where you stand and what needs to be fixed.  

With TimeBee’s reports, you get Hours tracked, Quarterly Performance Reports, and Project Reports (Progress and Costing). These reports offer deep insight into the current state of the business.  

iv. Use Collaboration Tools 

Collaboration tools are essential in a small business because miscommunication can lead to an unhealthy work environment.  

These tools offer a platform where everything gets documented, and management can quickly check a task’s progress.  

Moreover, you can identify where the task is being delayed. This leaves no room for a blame game as the management has actual data. The best collaborative tools to help your small business reach its full productivity potential include: 

  • Trello : Trello uses boards, lists, and cards to manage tasks. You can create boards for each project. On the board, you can make lists like “To do” and assign that task to an employee; the following lists can be about the teams. You can easily drag the task and put it in the required list.  
  • JIRA : Jira uses the word “issues” for tasks. These issues move through stages like “To Do” or “In Review”. Team members collaborate on issues, leaving comments and updates. Managers use reports to track progress and identify roadblocks. 
  • Asana : Asana functions like a digital project dashboard. You can create projects and define specific tasks within each project. Each task can be assigned to a team member, given a due date, and include attachments or detailed instructions. 

All these tools are designed to simplify tasks. These tools can help scale small businesses by creating a seamless flow of work and instilling a sense of responsibility in employees.  

v. Create a Healthy Work-life Balance 

Scaling a small business takes everything you have. When a person starts a company, they consider it as a baby and think that it is necessary to work day and night to make it a success.  

To some extent, this is true but it takes a toll on your mental health and physical health. These health issues cause delays, and you risk a lot. So how about creating a healthy work balance so the company’s success is smooth?  

Opt for Automation 

The market is flooded with apps and software that can help you automate everything. Yes, these seem like unnecessary investments, but in the long run, they indeed pay off. Decide what you absolutely need and purchase that software at that time. Slowly, you can build an automated structure that defines your business’s scale. 

Don’t be Scared to Ask for Help 

You cannot be in charge of everything. If you have partners, you can rely on them. If you are a sole proprietor, you must build a proper hierarchy. Choose the people with the right aptitude and try to trust them with the menial tasks.  

Take Breaks 

Taking breaks helps you reboot and process. If a situation is becoming stressful, take a break and start with a new perspective. This practice creates a healthy work balance, and you make sensible decisions, which helps with the business.  

Summing Up 

Every small business owner wants to scale their business and dreams of becoming an international venture. The approach may differ, but taking small steps helps build a solid foundation for a successful business. By following these guidelines, you can improve productivity, increase efficiency, and scale your business.   

The post The Small Business Owner’s Guide to Improving Productivity in the Workplace  appeared first on Productivity Land .

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