Productivity

Purpose. Prioritisation. Pragmatism.

Productivity is at the very core of what we do. As workplace psychologists, we work at the intersection of wellbeing, productivity and professional effectiveness, three mutually supporting themes.

Our mission is to help people move from merely surviving work to actually thriving at work, supporting productive and sustainable working practices in the process.

At WorkLifePsych, we want to give employees and organisations the tools they need to prioritise, delegate, work flexibly and deliver results – all while managing their limited resources of time, attention and energy.

Read on to find out more about our approach and how we can help you and your employees attain your productivity goals.

Defining productivity

Productivity is not simply about getting more done. We define our approach as ‘doing the right things, in the right way, at the right time’. Our approach acknowledges the fast pace of the modern workplace, avoids the application of strict ‘rules’, and leverages what we know about how people think, feel and behave at work so they can get the best from any situation.

The modern work environment would be simply unrecognisable to an employee from the middle of the 20th century. Communications technology, flexible working arrangements, global and virtual teams and 24/7 operations have combined to make the workplace a more challenging place in terms of focus and decision-making.

Employees at all levels are inundated with information, opinion and demands, meaning that being able to cut through the noise and prioritise key tasks, making best use of our limited time and attention, is what really matters. We’ve all experienced the sense of dissatisfaction at the end of a working day when we feel predictably tired – but with little of substance to show for our efforts.

We emphasise a need to move away from an old-fashioned emphasis on hours worked to a contemporary focus on quality and timely outputs. Indeed, from our perspective, improved productivity may result in fewer outputs – but all delivered to a higher quality, more efficiently and at the right time. All with a lower cost to wellbeing.

We know that employees need to balance productivity with wellbeing and need to be able to respond to changes in their environment in an effective and professional way. A single email can make all the difference to someone’s schedule – and their mental health, for better or worse.

How we can help

When it comes to productivity at work, we can help you and your employees from several complementary perspectives.

Strategic Guidance and Support

It can be tempting to buy in solutions to address your productivity challenges as soon as they come to your attention. Especially given the plethora of seemingly simple ‘quick fixes’ available on the market. However, we suggest caution and adopting a strategic perspective.

Productivity challenges aren’t improved with a single workshop or by coaching a single employee. It requires a joined-up approach, in alignment with your business strategy and its values.

We can work with you to bring clarity to your productivity challenges, identify appropriate solutions and evaluate the impact of these solutions once deployed.

Coaching

Productivity ranks highly as a focus with all the populations we coach – from individual contributors, to managers and organisational leaders. The challenge remains the same: how to make the best of our limited time and attention when we don’t have absolute control over the work demands that come our way.

Any number of reasons can impact our individual productivity: procrastination, feeling overwhelmed, a lack of clarity on values or priorities or simply adjusting to new levels of responsibility and letting go of the old.

We can support employees at all levels in their productivity journey. Coaching represents an excellent forum for productivity and unlocking employees’ potential to get more of the important and impactful things done each day.

Introducing Flexible Working

The 21st century has seen a welcome increase in the levels of flexibility afforded to employees across Europe and further afield. Though we know that the availability of flexibility in itself doesn’t always lead to the benefits organisations hope for at the outset.

The introduction of flexible working arrangements represents an organisational change, with the potential to impact culture, productivity, training needs, managerial impact and employee wellbeing. We would argue that the benefits outweigh the investment, but this doesn’t mean hard work still isn’t required to make it a success. This is where we can help.

While your focus may be on policies and procedures for working flexibly, we advocate starting several steps back and considering the rationale for flexibility and its anticipated benefits. This can help you identify potential pitfalls, as well as feeding into a more robust evaluation of any changes you make.

The introduction of flexibility needs to take account of the likely impacts on productivity and wellbeing, as well as the implications of managerial and leadership effectiveness. We can assist in preparing your leaders, managers and individual contributors for the benefits and challenges flexible arrangements can bring.

Training

We have a selection of one-day workshops built around the principles underlying productivity. Avoiding rules and strict processes, these sessions are all about learning how to implement methods and concepts in the delegates’ own working environment. Highly interactive and engaging, our workshops give delegates the tool they need to work in fluid and demanding environments.

In addition to our courses on productive principles, we have workshops to support flexible working arrangements, both for the individual professional and the manager responsible for those working flexibly.

We also have a range of shorter, 90-minute ‘Productivity Essentials’ sessions covering core skills like prioritisation, delegation, working flexibly, proactivity, email management and goal-setting.

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