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Our Employment Group’s HR strategic topic for 2019 is “Productivity” - Emma O’Connor, Head of Training - discusses why...

Steps to productivity

Why Productivity?

We’re all working longer hours. Fact. If you read the most recent TUC report it says that UK workers are putting in longer working hours when compared to our European counterparts. 

We have greater access to technology and can work in more agile ways. Many employers are embracing more flexible working practices and policies enabling workers to balance work/life commitments. 

So what’s going wrong? Are we all hamsters on wheels rushing round and round and not getting anywhere? 

Unlocking Productivity

What are the barriers to workforce productivity? Well, in my experience, the ways to knock down the barriers to productivity often rest within the organisation itself. If we think - honestly - about our on boarding processes, how managers are managing conflict situations and how we train and up-skill our leaders - could we do better? 

I wrote last week in a LinkedIn post about the “accidental manager” and that according to the Chartered Management Institute, 68% of UK managers categorise themselves as ‘accidental’ managers. Those managers that suddenly find themselves in charge of a team without any training or proper support. Is this a true reflection of you or your organisation? How much does this impact on team and ultimately organisational productivity? 

Achieving Sustainable Productivity 

Ok, here’s the thing; we can’t just unlock potential and productivity, we need to invest in it, grow it and embrace it. We need to focus on creating and achieving sustainable workforce productivity, avoiding the peaks and troughs.  In my management training sessions, I often talk about keeping people at “12 o’clock” on the performance clock. This is a helpful analogy as we all slip backwards at times. This perhaps involves a more holistic approach looking at employer brand, culture, wellbeing and wider people engagement. Having leaders which inspire and encourage individual development rather than a command centred approach, which now is perhaps outdated. 

Call to arms!

We are in changing times - politically, economically, generationally, and technologically. As HR, leaders and managers we need to look within the organisation and make small changes.  What can you do? Well, join us, start the discussion and focus on how you can increase productivity within your organisations.  It’s easy – here’s how: 

Join us - this month’s webinar is a discussion around team productivity lead by me and the excellent Marlies Butterworth.

Our 13 June Conference - unlocking productivity - looks at changing the productivity mind-set. Marlies is also our keynote speaker at this event too. 

Then, on 17 October, join us in London for our “Achieving Sustainable Workplace Productivity” Conference.

Our webinars and HR Conference are free to attend and are a chance to hear about the issues which are crossing your desks and being discussed in your Board Rooms. They are also an opportunity to hear from expert speakers and network with like minded professionals. 

Consistent with our policy when giving comment and advice on a non-specific basis, we cannot assume legal responsibility for the accuracy of any particular statement. In the case of specific problems we recommend that professional advice be sought.


Get in touch

If you have any questions relating to this article or have any employment issues you would like to discuss, please contact the Employment team on [email protected]

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