Companies are hardwired to protect all kinds of things. Trademarks, trade secrets, and budgets all get safeguarded. But one resource that is too often neglected is employees’ time and attention. Jason Fried, co-founder of 37 Signlas promoted this article, from his original blog post on it.
Time and attention are precious resources that are often treated as if they are in infinite supply, despite the fact that they are among the most scarce. In this blog post, we will explain why protecting your employees’ time and attention is crucial for productivity, and we’ll provide tips for how to do it.
No More Status Messages
One way to protect employees’ time and attention is to do away with status meetings. These meetings are a waste of time and money. Instead of bringing people together for an hour-long meeting, we suggest using a project management tool like Basecamp to keep everyone updated. This encourages team members to write daily or weekly updates that can be read by others when they have free time. This small change saves dozens of hours a week and affords people longer blocks of uninterrupted time.
Another way to protect time and attention is by minimizing interruptions. Encourage people to set hours when they are available for questions or discussions. This reduces the number of “drive-by” meetings and other interruptions that eat up hours of productivity. Encouraging remote work is also a great way to minimize distractions. A quiet home office can be a much more focused environment than a busy, noisy office.
Take the time to teach your employees how to prioritize their tasks. A clear understanding of the most important tasks sets them up for success. Too often, employees are given long task lists that are so overwhelming that they don’t know where to start. This leads to incomplete tasks, and lost productivity. Breaking large tasks down into smaller, more manageable chunks can help employees approach their work with more focus and less anxiety.
Encourage your employees to take breaks! Taking breaks is crucial to staying productive. Taking a walk, reading a book, or even chatting with a coworker can help clear the mind and recharge the battery. Being overworked and overtired leads to more mistakes and less productivity. Encourage your team to take proper breaks during their workday.
Burnout and Mental Health
Finally, speak to employees often about burnout and mental health. Employees who are overworked, stressed, and feel unsupported are more likely to have lower productivity. Mental health needs to be part of the conversation in any workplace that cares about employee well-being and productivity.
Protecting employees’ time and attention is crucial to a productive workplace. By minimizing interruptions, using project management tools, prioritizing tasks, taking breaks, and promoting mental health, your company can become a workplace where employees are set up for success. This creates a positive work environment and leads to better business outcomes, including happier employees, a culture of productivity, and a more successful company.
Ramon is an in-demand small business expert, who has started 5 companies and sold 3 companies. He’s the publisher of ZoneofGenius.com and BWCDaly.com. Ramon is a motivational keynote speaker and event host. Check out his latest book, “Celebrity CEO”, all about personal branding for entrepreneurs and small business owners. Get help from Ramon for your business at CelebrityCEO.com/coaching . Learn more about Ramon at RamonRay.com