If you read many news sources, you can barely avoid seeing multiple articles about being more productive. There are whole books devoted to working smarter and not harder and new methods that come out for better focus every week it seems. While your Middle Market company probably has some areas of inefficiency, intense focus on productivity isn’t going to resolve all issues. In fact, it could actually bring about a few problems of its own.
Why A Strict Focus On Productivity Can Be Harmful In Your Middle Market Organization
Obviously, your Middle Market firm does not want to waste time, money or resources – it dips into your profits for one thing, which isn’t benefitting anyone. The potentially harmful part comes in when you decide to become ultra-productive at the cost of everything else. Tunnel vision in this realm can hurt communication. It stifles ingenuity and creativity, and it doesn’t allow for organic growth. In other words, you can do just as much damage with a tight focus as you can with no focus.
If you feel productivity is too low, don’t go all in and force massive overhaul on your teams. It won’t make anything more efficient if they spend most of their days trying to adapt to the new processes they have to follow to be more efficient. You will not only throw a wrench in the works, you’ll probably upset many people. Instead of adding or demanding implementation of everything you hear about, we suggest a few different approaches for better adoption and success rates.
How To Introduce Productivity Improvements With Minimal Upset To Your Middle Market Teams
For starters, let your employees know why you want to focus on being more productive and efficient. The important factor here is to make it matter to them – not just to your company’s bottom line. If you want employees to care about improving something, they need to know how it will, directly and indirectly, affect them – both negatively and positively.
Do they want to cross-train but don’t have time? Do they have profit-sharing? Are they stressed to meet production deadlines? Start thinking about why your employees should care about whatever it is you want to tackle for productivity and then get their input. How do they think you could improve productivity? Ask them to think outside the box first – adding money, staff or technology isn’t going to be your first set of solutions.
If you have found some innovative techniques, you could present information on each and let your employees mull it over. Maybe some work for certain departments and not for others. Or maybe they’ll develop their own hybrid solutions. The important factor is you are not enforcing anything, you are offering options and letting them help formulate the solution.
Middle Market Executives Can Benefit From Productivity Techniques But Should Stay Flexible
Just like everything in life, moderation is key. Yes, having your inbox at zero every day might feel pretty great. However, if you are focusing on it so much it causes stress or makes you neglect other tasks, it isn’t really improving productivity. If using a timer to work in 25-minute sprints helps you blow through your to-do lists, fantastic. If it causes disruption to your day and means you never finish anything, it might not be for you.
Focusing on productivity can bring great things to your Middle Market company or it can waste time, energy and resources. Make sure you have the right mindset and approach to ensure success.
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