Employee productivity is a key element of business success. You want your team to work hard, be productive, and make the best use of their time. Sometimes this requires coaching and guidance. Not everyone instinctively knows what they should be doing at all times. This is where leadership comes in. It’s up to leaders to create an environment where people are encouraged to be at their most productive.
This means engaging employees and ensuring that they have all the tools and resources they need to do and be their best.
Here are seven ways to increase employee productivity
Too many employers in all sectors are unclear about what they expect from their employees, and then they complain when they don’t get it. From the moment an employee is hired, there should never be a time that they don’t know what is expected of them. If you want to increase employee productivity, they should know what success means for their role and how that fits in with what success means for your business. Set clear goals and targets, communicate those goals from day one, and keep communicating. A lack of communication can leave employees confused and unmotivated, and one study reportedly found that businesses with good communication practices were more likely to have lower than average turnover.
Track and analyze data
Once goals are set and communicated, they must be tracked. Your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) tell you how your business is doing and how your team is doing. Your spa software should be able to tell you everything you need to know about your revenue performance, retail, occupancy, and more, in seconds with just the click of a button. Then we determine what role the employee plays in those KPIs and whether they are meeting expectations. Staff KPIs might include retail penetration (retail vs services), request rates, and repeat guests. How much is their average ticket and are they doing well at upselling? Are they frequently requested by guests or not at all? If goals are easily reached, move them, or your employees will have nothing to work towards.
Respect your employees for the unique value they bring
Analyze performance from more than one angle. It’s important to look at retail sales, but also at how much unique value a service provider brings overall. For example: maybe Lisa is a sales dynamo and many customers love her exuberant energy. Jeremy is more of a quiet and calming personality whose retail numbers are significantly lower than Lisa’s. But, upon further inspection, you learn that Jeremy has a much higher request rate and that Lisa and Jeremy bring equal value — or maybe Jeremy even brings more. Maybe this is because people enjoy his lower key energy and lack of sales pressure, and some of Jeremy’s clients would actually stop requesting and recommending him if he started pushing retail sales. Does it make sense to tell Jeremy he has to sell more retail? Maybe not. Be careful of working against your employee’s strengths and, ultimately, against your business.
Offer feedback and coaching
That said, people often need help. Be there to provide it and make sure that your team has all the resources they need to reach company goals. Give feedback in a constructive and productive way. Tell people when they’re doing well and don’t reserve feedback for when you have something negative to say. If there are areas that need improvement, offer support and solutions rather than just criticism. Be consistent, doing regular check-ins rather than once or twice yearly check ins. Everyone will be more productive if you communicate regularly.
Recognize and reward performance and improvement
Offering performance incentives is a great way to motivate employees. Employee incentive programs are great, but avoid only recognizing top performers. When companies do this they risk falling into a trap of always recognizing the same people: the A Players. This means that your B Players are consistently overlooked, and that is demotivating and demoralizing for them. It’s also unfair. Not everyone can be A Players, and, while your B Players don’t bring in the most revenue individually, as a group, they likely make up the bulk of your revenue. You don’t want to lose them. So, reward them too. Also, rewards are great but don’t underestimate the power of praise and a heartfelt “thank you.”
Make sure everyone has what they need to be great
Your team members should not be spending time on tasks that could otherwise be automated and looking for information that should be readily available to them. What this means:
- Making guest information available before an appointment so service providers know who they will be working with. Your software system should store your guests’ names, purchase and treatment history, personal preferences (sparkling water over tea, Brahms over Enya, favourite scent is rosemary-lime, etc.), details like robe and slipper size, and even past conversations, across multiple properties and make it readily viewable for those who need to see it. Then your team can access all of this before an appointment to prepare a highly personalized experience.
- Optimizing schedules with no double booking and no long gaps between appointments for individual providers.
- Making these schedules viewable from anywhere with a cloud-based system so your team can be prepared.
- Properly managing inventory in your software system so everyone knows what is available and items that have run out can be immediately restocked.
- Utilizing online and mobile booking, virtual intake, and contactless payment options to free up front desk staff time and allow them to productively focus on the guest experience.
Trust people to make decisions
An empowered team is a productive team. When people feel like they have to consult a superior before doing anything – whether it’s offering a small gift with a service to a loyal customer, moving an appointment, or reversing the charge on a service due to a complaint – that is exactly what they will do, and that eats up time and morale. When you step back and trust your team, rather than micromanaging their every move, they grow into the space offered to them and take responsibility. This makes everyone more productive and operations run more smoothly.
It’s easy to motivate people with the right tools and resources. An engaged workforce is a productive one.