Employee productivity is one of the basic preconditions of business success. However, most companies are struggling to maintain a high level of efficiency, especially in the period of deadline pressure. According to the research, stress generally impairs performance because time pressure increases speed at the expense of quality.
There are a number of industries where it is not possible to avoid situations with strict and even sudden deadlines. In such circumstances, it is necessary to learn how to deal with these surprises and how to handle duties without making big mistakes. In this article, we will show you top 5 ways to keep employee productivity high in a period of deadline pressure.
How to Reduce Stress and Boost Productivity
Infographic -> Boost your productivity
Stress at work can cause burnout and drastically reduce employee retention. Employers are mostly aware of this fact but more than 60% of workers still claim that work-related pressure has been increasing in the last five years. If you want your team to become super-efficient, you need to allow them to function comfortably even in situations of deadline pressure. Here are 5 tactics to make it possible:
- Divide tasks into smaller units
If you face subordinates with big problems and ask them to solve these tasks quickly, they will probably crack and won’t get the job done. Therefore, you should think about the way to divide tasks into smaller units and allow employees to deal with a series of simpler problems.
That way, members of your team will see real-time progress and they won’t lose pace so easily. Try to be specific, introducing clear KPIs for each stage of the process. This method is extremely valuable because it allows employees to focus on precisely defined duties instead of elusive outcomes.
- Encourage teamwork
Happy workers are the best workers. For this reason, you should encourage employees to communicate freely and support each other on all occasions, especially if they are having a tight schedule. They need to embrace deadlines as challenges, working in groups to achieve joint goals. If one person is experiencing difficulties, others should notice and offer help.
At the same time, you should establish a calendar of activities so that everyone knows what and when she/he is supposed to do. It allows each employee to follow team’s progress and remind colleagues of unsolved problems. This is the best way to boost collaboration and solve problems in a timely manner.
- Don’t put additional pressure on workers
As a manager, you must be objective and rational regardless of the circumstances. You are the role model for your employees and you don’t want to put additional pressure on them. Stay calm even if you have to act promptly. Almost two-thirds of workers said that workplace stress had caused difficulties and more than 10% described these as having major effects.
It’s almost impossible to eliminate deadline pressure but it is possible to eliminate its negative impact. Just don’t yell at employees and encourage them to keep working until they find the right solution. If you see that someone is stuck and left without ideas, let them take a short walk to clear their heads. They will appreciate your concern and probably come up with a solution in the meantime.
- Let employees follow their instincts
We all want to make data-driven decisions, analyzing things thoroughly before the final call. Although it’s a natural way of handling things in everyday work, it’s not always doable. Sometimes your schedule is just too tight and you will have to allow workers to bring decisions based on their professional instincts. In this case, you have to rely on team members and let them follow intuition. Showing that you trust your employees, you will boost their confidence and they will make fewer mistakes even in case of deadline pressure.
- Give them time to recharge
Even the biggest workaholics need some time to recover and gain strength for new challenges. Your job is to recognize when an employee needs some rest. If you don’t do it, they will burn out and start making wrong decisions under pressure. Therefore, you should let them experience strategic renewal with daytime workouts, short afternoon naps, longer sleep hours, more time away from the office and longer, more frequent vacations. It will increase employee productivity, job performance, and health.
Stress at work is often inevitable and the only thing you can do is to allow your team to function more comfortably in a period of deadline pressure. There are many ways to do it, so we decided to show you 5 most beneficial methods in that regard. Keep our suggestions in mind and don’t hesitate to let us know in comments if you have other tips to share.
About the author: Olivia is an incurable optimist who always sees the glass as half-full. She likes nature, knows how to enjoy silence and is keen on writing for different websites as well as for aussiewritings.com. Meet her on Facebook and Twitter.