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Skyrocket Employee Productivity With These Best Practices

Skyrocket Employee Productivity With These Best Practices

Skyrocket Employee Productivity With These Best Practices
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By Emilia D'Anzica

I recently had the opportunity to facilitate a discussion around the future of employee productivity in San Francisco, CA.

WalkMe brought together San Francisco, Bay Area customers and a panel of leaders including Kumud Kokal, Head of Business Systems at Airbnb, and Rozlyn Greenfield, Head of Global Customer  Experience Enablement at Optimizely, for a discussion on employee productivity. 

The conversation centered around how managers can foster creativity and high performance among employees, and the panelists agreed on the three major points.

3 Best Practices to Raise Employee Productivity

1. Hire the right people – don’t rush the process

Invoking 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh, the speakers described hiring the right people as “picking players who want to play the sport.” Hiring people who want to work for you and believe in the company’s mission will set you up for success.

The need to hire driven, goal-oriented people was also a main theme in the discussion.

The ideal employee is someone who wants to learn and craves improvement. An employee with a desire to improve on their own can be an invaluable asset, especially to a smaller company, where employees have to be a larger part of the mission and strategy. If your team is full of this kind of worker, you won’t need to worry about employee productivity. It’s guaranteed. 

2. Develop a positive culture with targeted hires

After hiring key players, the next step is to cultivate a culture in which those employees can thrive.

Kumud, quoting Simon Sinek, describes culture as a combination of values and behavior. The manager may establish the values, but it is the behavior of your team implementing these values day to day that shapes the culture.

Managers should create a culture that prioritizes achievements. Celebrating success within your team improves morale and engagement. Encouraging learning and development, recognizing and rewarding high performance, and checking up with employees in one-on-one meetings shows that you care about them as people, not just as workers. In turn, you can increase engagement and employee productivity.

3. Engagement can make or break a company:

Keeping employees engaged should be one of a manager’s main priorities. However, engagement can be difficult to distinguish from happiness.

For example, video games in the office can certainly increase employee happiness and make coming to work more pleasurable for some, but does it really foster engagement? And how might this approach affect employee productivity?

What can improve engagement? Equipping your employees with the right tools to manage their work and to use their time efficiently is an option all companies should consider. As Rozlyn put it, “it’s not about working harder, it’s about working smarter.” 

You want your employees to complete the smaller tasks with ease so they can focus on the quarterly goal, the long-term strategy, and challenges as arise. When employees get bogged down by mundane tasks, they may not spend quality time or energy on the higher level problems. As a result, employee productivity will suffer.

Rozlyn urged managers to invest in tools such as automation, online scheduling programs, and project tracking software that will garner more success in the long run.

The theme of  WalkMe’s first ‘Lunch & Learn’ panel discussion was a strong reminder that employees are human beings, not machines.  They need the right tools to do their job successfully and a culture that encourages them to work in a smart, efficient way. To promote productivity, managers must not only make themselves available as resources but also understand where their employees are coming from and foster their career development.

Employee Productivity

Panelists discussing employee productivity at WalkMe’s Executive Lunch & Learn

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Emilia D'Anzica
Emilia is the VP of Customer Engagement at WalkMe, a real-time guidance platform. She is a certified Scrum master, PMP certified project manager, blogger and a frequent speaker at conferences. In the span of her career, Emilia has received numerous awards for being a top client service manager and leader, including the 2017 MindTouch Top 25 Customer Success Influencers. Emilia holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of British Columbia and a Trans-global Executive MBA from St. Mary's College of California. Emilia speaks fluent Italian and has lived and worked in Italy, Denmark, France, Canada, and the US.