7 Ways To Improve Team Efficiency And Productivity

team-efficiency

Being the leader of a team isn't a piece of cake. As a matter of fact, NO team is actually easy to manage. Whenever several people with different beliefs, coming from different walks of life are put to work together as a team, miscommunication and chaos are potentially going to be there. However, strong leaders know how to keep their teams together and how to motivate people to cooperate towards common goals. Here are 7 ways to improve team efficiency and productivity.


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Before we look at actionable measures that can help leaders improve the efficiency and productivity of their people, think about some key definitions first:

Efficiency is the ultimate performance stage, in which a process creates the maximum possible output with the lowest amount of inputs. Personal time and energy and only two of the inputs that need to be taken into consideration.

Productivity is nothing else than a measure of the efficiency of a process. It can be defined as the ratio between outputs and inputs. It can be measured in output per unit of input. When all inputs and outputs are considered in measuring productivity, it is called total productivity.

Efficiency has a direct influence on productivity, and consequently on profitability. This is very simple to explain. When you use the least amount of input to obtain a certain output, you save money. You'll need to pay less work hours to employees in your team, hence the savings that would increase your profitability. Cutting the costs is always a profit generator.

Most business owners set their profitability goals, so they have to act towards improving its two pillars, efficiency and productivity. Nobody wants to waste money, that's for sure. 

1. Team Building Activities

In order for a team to function as a whole, its members need to know each other and get along. Good work relationships between the members of a team result in a smooth workflow and cooperation. If team members don't get along too well, there's going to be trouble more often than not. This is why team relationships need to be strengthened by organising team building activities.

It could be something structured like going to an Escape Room, or something more casual like a pizza night out together. Whatever you choose to have the team do together, activities like this can do wonders for the cohesion of a team. It gets people out of the office and talking differently.

2. Training

The better the skills of your employees, the better your productivity is going to be. This is why team members should always receive the appropriate training that would enable them to enhance their skills and to acquire new ones.

Where possible send your employees to conferences, trainings, seminars and workshops. Or if cost is a factor, consider enrolling them in online training programs that help them upskill.

Recommended reading: How to Motivate Staff Through Employee Training

3. Listen To Your People

Communication is essential in any company, regardless the industry or market it operates in. You need to identify the biggest needs of your employees, as well as potential problems that might interfere with their efficiency and productivity. When employees feel they aren't listened to, they lose their motivation. This is going to have a direct impact on their productivity, as they will be less efficient in accomplishing their daily tasks.

You have to show your employees you care about them, so do your best to listen to them whenever they have a problem. If they come with ideas, praise them and encourage them to pursue them, as this is going to make them feel useful.

Listening to your employees is very important also because they are the driving power that keeps your business going. If you want productivity and efficiency, you need to make sure your team members are happy and motivated. 

4. Incentives

Most employees want to get paid. However, there isn't a direct correlation between the payment level and the productivity of their work. There are many other factors that affect their happiness, and therefore their efficiency.

Motivation can fade away from various reasons. When this happens, it has a direct influence on the productivity of employees. Whenever you notice a slight decrease in their motivation, you can help them become happier by giving them some extra incentives.

A special bonus can do wonders for the productivity and motivation of a team member and therefore the team. Incentives don't always have to be financial, it could be a simple "employee of the month" or getting a small gift to say well done. 

5. Employee Responsibility and Autonomy

Better performers are going to be demotivated if they aren't assigned responsibilities they feel right for their skills and knowledge. Understanding your employees better, so that you can assign them tasks based on their strengths and capabilities helps keep that motivation going. Your team is going to work much better when each member is happy with his or her tasks and roles.

The days of micromanagement are gone. Apps and mobile working technology make it easy to work anywhere and this also allows employees the chance to do so flexibly. It also means employees can have a certain amount of autonomy, which can save employers the need for lots of micromanagement. 

6. Choose The Most Appropriate Management Style

Once you get to understand your team members, you should be able to see what management style would work best for them. Very experienced, senior employees are going to be better off with a free-rein leadership style. They need a certain level of independence to function well. They want to feel that you trust them, so you should allow them make some decisions without consulting you.

On the contrary, inexperienced team members may need a more paternal leadership style, as they need all the guidance and supervision you can offer.

7. Have Roles And Tasks Clearly Defined

When members of a team know exactly what their specific roles and tasks are, they are going to be more productive, as there won't be too much room for confusion. Make sure you instruct your people on their responsibilities right off the bat, in order to avoid miscommunication.

Hopefully some of these ideas are ones that can help you improve the efficiency of your team. 

Over to you now. What is your experience of improving team efficiency? What worked for you? Tell us in the comments below. 

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