Do you work long hours on a regular basis? Many business owners I speak to are working crazy long hours! Some are working from 5 am to 9 pm every single day. This is not only unhealthy, but it is preventable. The solution is to increase productivity in our business.

  • Lead Your Team by Example
  • 5 Factors that Contribute to Productivity Loss
  • Solutions to Increase Productivity

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If you’ve ever felt like you’ve spent all day at the office, but have gotten nothing done, you’re not alone. This is a common concern for many business owners and can be very disappointing and depressing. Many business owners consider it a problem of time management. While this is true to an extent, the other culprit is distractions that lead to loss of productivity.

The distractions that you and your employees face regularly may cost you a lot of money by the end of the year.

Most people would think a two-minute phone break or a peek at social media doesn’t have a large effect on their performance. What if I told you that are report showed that companies lose up to $650 billion a year because of loss of productivity? It’s a lot more concerning now, right?

That’s not to say we need to be robots glued to our desks, or that we should expect that from our employees. But it’s important to know the effects of productivity loss and the factors that contribute to it.

Lead Your Team by Example

As the business owner, you are leading your team not just with the tasks you give them, but by your actions. Therefore, if you are being unproductive throughout the workday, your team will be unproductive.

You may consider yourself to be a very productive person based on the hours you work and how much you get done in your company. There are two things wrong with this thinking.

  1. Working long hours does not equal productivity. If anything, it shows a lack of productivity, as you may be distracted by things during the day that prevents you from completing work at a reasonable time.
  2. You may be able to get a lot more done in less time if you cut out the distractions

If you want to know if you are being unproductive, consider doing a time study. This may show how much time you are spending:

  • Checking emails
  • Surfing the web
  • Scrolling through social media

Or even how much time you spend putting out fires with your team. This is a huge contributor to loss of productivity because if you have to spend a significant amount of time correcting or doing your team’s work, how do you get your work done. It’s counterproductive.

4 Factors that Contribute to Productivity Loss

These factors may contribute to productivity loss in yourself or your team. Recognizing the factors allows you to correct behavior and amplify efficiency.

  1. Lack of sleep  – An interesting finding shows that companies can lose $2,500 a year due to insomnia (Business Insider). Working late nights and early mornings regularly contributes to this factor.
  2. Stress – Recognize the signs of a toxic workplace environment, because sometimes as business owners, we may even be contributing to it.
    “Employees under high levels of stress cost 40% more than the average worker. Stress may also contribute to increased instances of unethical behavior, like lying to customers or taking shortcuts on work tasks.” (Business Insider)
  1. Too many meetings – This one was interesting. In a 2017 article, the Harvard Business Journal conducted a study of 182 managers from various industries. What they found was:
  • 65% said meetings keep them from completing their own work.
  • 71% said meetings are unproductive and inefficient.
  • 64% said meetings come at the expense of deep thinking.
  • 62% said meetings miss opportunities to bring the team closer together.”
    Rethink how you use meetings and how you conduct them to make sure they are still fostering collaboration and creativity and not taking away from the work at hand.
  1. Smartphones and excessive internet usage – This can be debatable. In a Google survey conducted in 2018, 70% of workers say handheld devices contribute to productivity (Business News Daily). Many use these devices for work and with the development of productivity apps, can be relied on. But consider this, workers can spend up to 2.5 hours a day using their smartphones for non-work reasons. That adds up to 12.5 hours per week. Americans work on average 34.4 hours a week, so that is a sizeable chunk of time that is spent on non-work activity.

Solutions to Increase Productivity

If you see any of these factors playing out in your business, now is the time to take action. You may lose a lot of money from these habits. The first step is to take a thorough analysis of your business to understand why these habits occur and ways you can prevent them. Talk to a business coach today to set that up. We only have four openings per month, so reserve your spot soon!