If you’re the boss of a company, be the boss. If you’re in charge of reconciliations, make sure the reconciliations get done. If you’re in charge of scheduling meetings, make sure all the meetings are properly scheduled. Capish?
I don’t mean to sound harsh, but I often find that people make their own lives overly complicated. And in a time when the world is wobbly let’s take a second to breathe and remember our own individual goals and tasks. Bill Belichick, head coach of the New England Patriots, coined the common phrase “Do your job.” Pretty simple right? While it’s a simple phrase, it’s meant to be just that: simple.
Now, I would never deter any of my employees from lending a hand to another colleague or client. In fact, we cross train our entire staff so they can assist each other during crunch times, but by delving into a multitude of different tasks, our responsibilities have the possibility of being stretched too thin. And by that, I mean more tasks can get done, but if an employee is stretched so widely across multiple projects, perhaps not each piece of their work will be done 100% correctly.
A simple analogy would be fishing. Would you rather catch a couple 200-pound tunas, or fifty minnows? Productivity is key to any company, so here are some ways I keep my employees productive during these different times:
I let my employees know exactly what I need from them in the near-immediate future, what I need next week, and what I need of them within a long-range period. This way, every minute of the day is utilized to its maximum potential. While prioritization is key, it goes hand in hand with my next productivity booster.
2. Task lists.
While making sure priorities are clear, so are labeling each individual employee specific duties, as it respects to their role. As mentioned before, having too many differentiated tasks at once can be counterproductive, therefore, it’s essential to make sure each employee has a reasonable workload. This maintains each employee can put their best foot forward on the projects.
3. Constant correspondence.
Whether it’s a videocall every other day, an email check in, or a simple phone call, checking in is important. Not being able to see everyone’s faces everyday can cause for disarray and disorganization. That’s why it is imperative to continue a constant line of communication. While I prefer even a short meeting every day, however it doesn’t need to be everyday if you can’t afford the time.
While it’s impossible to always stay consistent with meeting times and formats every day, consistency, especially during this work at home pandemic is useful, productive and reassuring to all. It breeds normalcy into what can be a fragmented workday or week.
As the leader, you must be prepared. Have your notes, topics and points of interest and concerns ready. Do not be fumbling around and have no concept of your discussion points for each meeting. You’re the leader so be prepared and lead by example.
Your staff aren’t robots. Try and open the meeting by asking how their day or evening was. Allow them time to talk personally about a matter in their life. Give them time to communicate with each other. Not only about work-related issues but their lives in general. This will reinforce that while they may be working from home, they are not alone and are an integral part of the team. And on a beautiful day openly offer them time to get outside, take a walk, work from their patio of end their day a little early, cook a burger and have some “me” time.
Following these guidelines will help keep lives simpler, more productive and supply them all with direction and a conduit back to one another and the company, while increasing productivity and usefulness. And couldn’t we all use a little clarity right now?