Productivity can be defined as the measurement of the efficiency of a working unit.
Therefore, from an economic perspective, it can be defined as the way to measure output that comes from a particular unit of input provided. It can be estimated in various ways, keeping the input-output relationship constant.
If the output is in the form of goods, it can be easily quantified. However, when we are considering services as an output, things become a bit tricky to handle.
For some services, the amount of revenue the individual generates by rendering his/her services on behalf of the company is taken as a measurement of productivity. That amount is then divided by the individual’s salary.
However, life is not a supply chain. There are more ways to define productivity apart from the classical economics context. In this article, we are going to discuss in detail what productivity is, the ways to calculate productivity, and how this term affects us in our day-to-day lives.
Let’s dive deep into this article to understand what productivity is and how you can increase productivity in a result-oriented manner-
What is productivity?
The amount of output you get by providing minimal time and effort is the fundamental essence of productivity.
When you are trying to find the answer to the question of how to be more productive, the answer you are seeking is a convenient way to achieve goals. It forms a quantifiable benchmark of one’s efficiency.
As economic driving factors have shifted, the term “productivity” has gained more significance in the commercial sector.
In layman’s definition, when you picture someone as “productive”, you immediately imagine a person working his way through a massive pile of tasks and being busy with work always.
The truth, however, is far away from this imagery. The common mistake that we commit is considering being busy and being highly productive as equal entities.
When one seeks to meet the true definition of high productivity, that individual won’t have to even worry about deadlines and will always be five, ten steps ahead on each task at hand. Be it a week, day or a month- that individual will still get the task done well ahead of schedule.
The ways to make the most out of the working hours to achieve a sense of success and fulfillment, regardless of whatever the task is, is where the true definition of productivity lies.
The brief of high productivity is basically “Work smarter, not harder.”
Let us now have a look upon different factors that can be used for defining productivity-
Factors that define Productivity
Productivity is the result of multiple factors at play- which ranges from the quality of machines used to provide the output or an individual’s skills being used to produce that output.
Other essential factors that build-up to the term “productivity” include delivery speed, efficient management, and sufficient motivation.
A company can collectively increase productivity by investing in cutting-edge technology for manufacturing processes, better managers and skilled staff and providing incentives as a motivational drive for the workers.
From the staff perspective, if there is a significant concern among the workers about the welfare, output per worker can drastically increase as well.
Why is productivity important?
An increase in productivity is an essential ingredient for an economy because it equips people to achieve more with less input and within whatever limited resources available to produce output.
Utilizing the two most scarce factors in the economy- labor and capital, to the fullest extent, to achieve the most output is what every industry and the economy in entirety strives for. Economists all around the world measure and quantify productivity because it holds an important key to predict gross domestic product levels of an economy in the long run.
From an individualistic perspective, the demand for an efficient worker is always more so efforts should be put into increasing one’s productivity. As we have earlier discussed, an increase in productivity will ultimately lead to higher and improved standards of living.
What is Productivity on a personal scale?
The first question that comes to mind while talking about one’s perspective of productivity is why is there a need to increase productivity.
The answer is two-fold. There are two types of motivation to increase an individual’s efficiency- intrinsic and extrinsic. If one seeks to increase their productivity just for the sheer joy or passion towards that particular task which ultimately leads to satisfaction after completion, that motivation is intrinsic.
It is called fundamental because it is done without any expectation for external incentives or rewards.
On the other hand, as the word “extrinsic” suggests, when the motivation behind performing well depends upon external rewards- it is called external rewards.
It is advisable to find the intrinsic motivation behind you to increase productivity. Take into consideration the sense of fulfilment and satisfaction you achieve and the bonuses you receive in the form of notable success and accomplishment.
However, on the other hand, finding the intrinsic motivation to achieve something will only be possible if that individual has enough passion for performing and carrying out the task.
How can an individual be more productive?
One thing that must be kept in mind is that movement and achievement are two very different things.
While ticking off small-term goals might give you a heightened sense of accomplishment, it might hinder you on your quest to reach your ultimate goal as well. Complacency is good, but not in high quantities.
There are numerous ways and motivation sources to increase productivity. The key, however, is choosing that path that will ultimately lead you towards the final goal you seek for.
The single most benefit of productivity from a personal perspective is that you will cut down on time expenditure, and you will be able to focus on what is important and where your attention is needed the most.
It will help you to sort out your priorities when it comes to work, which is a huge thing to achieve.
Some of the essential tips to increase your productivity-
23 Tips to Increase your Individual Productivity
- Setting a Timer
- Eliminating all the distracters
- Listening to music that boosts focus
- Seek meaning in the tasks that you do
- Prioritize your most dreaded tasks
- Reward yourself for finishing important tasks
- Opt for focus tools
- Know your productive hours
- Write down the to-do list every day
- Get up early
- Get good sleep
- Regularly exercise
- Always set exciting and realistic goals for you
- Read book Getting Things Done of David Allen
- Opt for result-oriented activities
- Learn to say No
- Choose the right diet
- Organize your office
- Choose Work from Home to avoid the daily commute
- Set self-imposed deadlines
- Give up on the illusion of perfect output
- Always be proactive than being reactive
- Try to minimize your interruptions
How Productivity matters on a larger scale for a Company
Productivity is the single-most-important factor when looking not only at the performance of a particular company, but the entire industry as well.
When there is a rise in productivity and output per unit worker, automatically there is a rise in living standards of the worker mass. The philosophy behind this relation is straightforward.
When productivity rises, there is a rise in revenue as well, and the workers can now enjoy more benefits for their hard work. Not only has that, with an increase in productivity, but the availability of goods and services also becomes abundant.
This leads to an improved ability to avail them at affordable margins. With more income and benefits, an individual can automatically enjoy a higher standard of life.
As far as business institutions are concerned, higher productivity means higher turnover and a significant rise in the profit margins.
Let us now have a look at some practical ways through which you can increase the productivity of your company-
19 Tips to increase Company Productivity
- Have a monitoring system in place
- Have a regular employee reviews
- Always have a method to collect feedback
- Offer monetary rewards to motivate employees
- Offer time-based rewards to increase employee productivity
- Have a team-based along with individual goals
- Have a communal break room
- Choose the right music and minimize the distractions
- Offer a more useful and comprehensive training program
- Have online and offline periods
- Opt for short and sweet email threads
- Include the right tools and equipment
- Offer excellent support and set realistic objectives
- Make sure employees are happy
- Have a cultural fit with optimized recruiting
- Encourage autonomy without having micromanaging
- Get more work done via remote working
- Ensure employee engagement and employee satisfaction
- Get employee performance insight by measuring their performance
Final Thoughts about Productivity!
With increased motivation and continued training and skill development, one can successfully increase productivity on a quite substantial scale.
It is always fulfilling to be ahead of schedule and completing the necessary work as it speaks volumes about one’s ability to perform well and their work efficiency. Be it economics or the real world, an increased level of productivity is always desirable.
So no matter what the level is, everyone should focus on improving their productivity levels- be it an individualistic or on an institutional level.
What kind of techniques do you try for optimizing your productivity? Share your tips with us to make this post the most comprehensive one for guiding someone to increase their productivity in the comment section below.