False Productivity Goals that Every Manager Needs to Be Aware of

False Productivity Goals

Have you got your company through a rebranding process lately?

Or you are still going through growing pains, trying to build a sustainable business?

If your answer is yes to either of these questions, then you understand how much joint effort and engagement these processes require. You can also identify with many managers who are constantly in the “hustle mode” trying to achieve more with the time they have.

This drive to do more usually comes with a cost. You and your employees may slide into burnout without noticing it, failing to reach all set goals and harming your health and work/life balance long term.

So, if you find that your team is clocking in countless overtime hours without actually moving the needle forward, you need to revise your productivity goals and make needed adjustments.

Here’s how you can shift your perception of these goals and help your employees reach significant goals without overworking.

Effectiveness Over Efficiency

Many think that efficiency is the key to every successful team or company. While making the most of your time at work can affect your productivity, especially with the help of advanced tools, like monitoring software for employees, it has its limits. There are only so many hours in a day you can spend.

You may find ways to optimize your business practices and make them more efficient, either by automatization or outsourcing. The crucial question is how you want to use these extra hours gained. And that is where effectiveness enters the scene. If you intend to fill this time saved with more meetings or time spent on low-value tasks or routine work, you’ll waste it without making progress towards meaningful goals.

Efficiency is all about making more time for work. Effectiveness is, on the other hand, all about what you intend to do with that time. True productivity reflects in the high-quality outcomes rather than the mere number of tasks completed.

By shifting your mindset from efficiency to effectiveness, you’ll create more time that your workers can dedicate to focusing on meaningful, creative tasks that add value to their work and your business alike.

Progress Over Productivity

Productivity implies the number of tasks you can complete within set hours, crossing them off your to-do list, making your schedule packed with meetings, and being stuck at your desk for 8 or even 12 hours a day.

This is how numerous business leaders understand productivity. But will this mindset get you closer to achieving crucial goals and keep your company afloat?

Highly unlikely because productivity is all about how busy you are, On the other hand, progress is all about how effective you are.

By measuring productivity only by the number of tasks completed, you fail to make a difference between meaningful work and mundane tasks.

To make this right, you need to focus on the progress made in completing demanding tasks. For example, progress is when a content writer finishes a chapter of an e-book, or a sales representative closes three deals because they are making steps toward completing key goals.

Insisting on productivity rather than progress makes your employees redirect their attention from meaningful, key goals to low-value tasks that can be completed easily.

Work-for-work tasks, including answering emails, reorganizing folders, and attending numerous meetings, don’t contribute to reaching set goals. But they create a sense of accomplishment, making employees believe they’re highly productive. When, in fact, this is false productivity that consumes time without producing visible, valuable results.

When you encourage employees to focus on significant tasks by measuring progress made toward reaching their key goals, you recognize genuine productivity that contributes to your company’s success.

Employee tracking data not only offers you a detailed insight into employee productivity rates but also helps you track progress by showing you the time spent on various projects.

This will help you differentiate between time spent on day-to-day tasks and focused time spent on key goals. You can use these employee monitoring reports to help them manage their time better, committing more to creative, meaningful work that brings value to the company.

Achievement over Activity

One respectable basketball coach once said that you should never mistake activity for achievement no matter what line of business you are in. And this insightful phrase can incite you to question your productivity goals. But how to overlook employee activity when it leads to achievement?
Of course, you can’t and you shouldn’t.

You only have to change the way you value employees’ activities at work. Because, according to a Forbes study, sales agents tend to spend only 35% of their time actually selling. That means that they spend an astonishing 65%of their time tackling low-value tasks, wasting their time and the company’s money.

So, if you want your employees to commit their time to achieve their key goals, start using employee monitoring software to determine what specific employees’ activities are leading to.

Then you can take effective steps to limit the time-wasting activities and prioritize tasks, encouraging your employees to focus on meaningful work that contributes to overall company success.

Final Words

Hustle culture is deeply rooted in the misconception that employees need to work long hours and be available to their managers 24/7 to become highly productive.

But if you change the perspective of your productivity goals, you’ll see that true productivity is all about quality before quantity. In other words, you should focus on quality results your employees delivered at the end of the day, using their time effectively, and making progress towards reaching their key goals.


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