For many people in business, the desire to make money is one of their key drivers. It was probably their objective in starting a company in the first place. But ironically, they often don’t see the need and so neglect to spend time asking some fundamental questions to enable them to achieve this.
What is the most efficient, effective way for them to do their job, what are they best at, what do they really like doing and what generates most profit? Instead they say they’re too busy for that and have to get on with the job.
That can mean they don’t see the wood for the trees and get bogged down with things they dislike or don’t do very well because that’s how it’s always been. It’s important to be open to changing your style of working.
For example, how many people react to an email at the expense of carrying on with a piece of work they’ve already started? Research shows that with constant interruptions, your IQ falls by up to 10 points, the same drop in mental capacity as when we lose a night’s sleep. And it can take up to 25 minutes to get back into what we were doing. So it could be better to set aside time to answer emails rather than checking them all day long.
How often have you or someone else said: “By the time I’ve explained to someone else how to do a job, it would have been quicker to do it myself.”
While probably true the first time, think of the longer term benefits. If you explain things properly, the second time the person will be able to carry out tasks with less supervision and at some stage they’ll be able to do them independently. You have delegated work to someone else and they have progressed, earned greater responsibility, and gained confidence. You have also freed your time to grow the business.
There’s every chance they’ll also discover a higher level of job satisfaction, something that’s rarely about how much money they earned. It’s much more likely to be about being listened to and valued.
Another potential benefit to businesses is for people to have freedom to work in ways and times which best suit them. Obviously that can’t apply to every aspect of a job because some work means interaction with other team members. But by planning a project imaginatively it’s often possible to build in much valued flexibility.
It’s a mistake to think that just because someone is first in the office, doesn’t take a lunch break and is last to leave that they’ve necessarily been productive. The opposite could be true.
It’s been shown that taking regular breaks and exercise during the day actually increases productivity. A study by the University of Bristol found that almost three quarters of people who took exercise during breaks saw improved mental and interpersonal performance and felt more motivated.
Research in the European Heart Journal suggests that working more than three hours overtime daily increases the risk of heart disease and there’s also good evidence that taking holidays is essential for good health. Managers and staff are more motivated, productive, creative, satisfied with their job and less likely to be off sick.
In other words, spending some time away from the desk produces a better result. So helping staff achieve a good work-life balance is not something that’s nice to do, it makes hard business sense and actually leads to greater profits.
More and more businesses are using specialist coaches to provide help; teaching how to use a set of tools in various ways, including 90 minute one-to-one monthly meetings or group workshops. It’s been shown that they help teams and individuals to develop and grow their businesses.
Five Useful Steps
- Maintain your health
- Give people time when they have your undivided attention
- Organise your environment to minimise time spent looking for things
- Make a plan and stick to it
- Keep a "to do" list and keep it under review as circumstances change
For more details visit www.coaching4rslts.com