We’ve entered a new workforce arena in the last few years. Everyone hides in their cubicles, everyone is at their windows leisurely surfing websites; only answering to their name and only showing themselves when asked.
This is the great problem between productivity and inefficacy that plagues our modern-day work environments.
FYI: 9-11 a.m. is the most productive time in the workplace.
Here’s the breakdown from Forbes:
- 31% of employees waste roughly 30 minutes daily
- 31% waste roughly 1 hour daily
- 16% waste roughly 2 hours daily
- 6% waste roughly 3 hours daily
- 2% waste roughly 4 hours daily
- 2% waste 5 or more hours daily
This means 4% of people surveyed waste at least half the average workday on non-work-related tasks.
Twenty-four percent of survey respondents said Google is the biggest online time-waster, with Facebook nipping at the search giant’s heels, garnering 23%. LinkedIn came in third with 14%, followed by Yahoo (7%), Amazon (2%), YouTube (2%) and ESPN (2%). Pinterest, Twitter and Craigslist each received 1%.
Why all the waste?
Among employees, 53% say they waste time because they believe short breaks actually increase productivity. Boredom came in at 20%. Another group stated that they aren’t interested enough in their jobs to pay full attention. Eight percent claim lack of incentives, 7% being unsatisfied with their job and 2% for not being paid enough.
Too many meetings or conference calls, and dealing with annoying coworkers both tied for second at 24%.
How can we remedy wasted time?
There are several solutions for combating wasted time at work. While some of these methods may work as is for certain companies, it is always smart to discuss how to tackle these solutions with your leadership team.
Proper Communication. Keep employees in the loop regarding upcoming changes in operations, leadership or employment. Confidence at work typically stems from consistent communication and actions from management.
Messages from management. Miscommunications and misinterpretations often arise from inconsistency or lack of company-wide communication. People may feel more at ease when they know what to expect.
Policy Enforcement. Inconsistent enforcement can lead to distrust and poor company morale.
The problem can be likened to a patchwork quilt. Solving the problem, like quilting, is to satisfy the attentiveness of the workplace by communicating standards and setting goals to achieve rewards. This is the balance of everyone stitching pieces together. Everyone must contribute by adding little, medium and big pieces.
Furthermore, this example also aims to strengthen attentiveness — to increase production, to spread the vibe, raise the level expectations; to increase and multiply.
Does this sound easy?
One does need reasonable temperament and ability to create an attentive workspace.
So, how do you finish a patchwork quilt, you ask? Reward the employees contributing to it. Even if it’s with something small like offering to let them leave work early on Friday for a company happy hour or giving them all custom-made company mugs from Sunset Hill Stoneware if they meet their sales goals for the week.
Yeah! Snap, swagger and stitch...
BETTERING WORKING AGREEMENTS
In short, expectations in an enjoyable workplace increase the expectations of all employees because they become the product represented by their attentiveness. Here are some other rewards that might encourage them to cut back on wasting time.
Flexibility as a reward. For example, if you were to ask to work from home two days a week, you should be sure to present your supervisor with documents and plans so you can mutually set short- and long-term performance goals, identifying how and when progress on these goals will be measured. You could also volunteer to log time diaries and weekly progress reports, and agree that if the boss feels your performance declines in any way they can cut back on the flexibility.
Employees need to know that they have the power to influence how well the company does, and they are the bearers of great responsibility for that. To help the company succeed, they cannot be inattentive.
Yeah! Snap, swagger and stitch.…
Internet Filtering. This is a tough nut to crack. It’s hard, as there are no easy answers for this predicament. Employers’ attitudes vary. Some companies accept such distractions as inevitable. Others take the gravel road.
However, blocking malware and suspicious websites is a no-brainer. But be warned; it’s uncertain what benefits there are for employers who implement the practice of blocking websites other than for malware issues.
Blocking of websites can to qualified job candidates not accepting offers, while others have said they would consider quitting if such a policy was established. Also, some employees state they would just use their personal smartphones or tablets if need be.
However, when employees feel that they are trusted, they are typically happier and more productive. And, just as important, providing a workplace that feels natural for the life and growth of an employee equals working swagger with true grit!
What Employees Can Take Away from This
We all know that emergencies happen. However, most things can wait until you’re clocked out. Know that your fellow employees and employer are counting on you to do your job well.
Attentiveness regulates movements, clears up confusion, dissipates compact groupings of individuals wandering about the office in unpredictable ways and it establishes workplace integrity.
And employers see these attributes in their employees, and that leads to opportunities, including growth from the past into new endeavors. It’s like going from a SCUBA guise into an astronaut guise. To want to be part of that team or task, to want and share that same sense of purpose while working is rejuvenation.