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28 September, 2015

How to Increase Employee Productivity at Work – The On-Job Leadership Performance of Your Managers

We’ve been talking recently about the Productivity Lever – The fastest way to grow performance  in your business.

So far we’ve discussed two parts of that lever:

  1. The load arm – which represents the Key Performance Indicators or productivity measures that you want to increase.
  2. The effort arm – the critical work behaviours of your people which maximise performance. This is where you want to put most of your effort in order to grow performance.

Today we’re going to talk about the 3rd part which is the fulcrum, or pivot point. This represents the on-job leadership performance of your managers.

The big question here is; what are the really important leadership activities your managers need to be doing, so their people can perform to the best of their ability?

As it happens, the Corporate Leadership Council gives us a very good clue.

They say that managers can most effectively drive employee performance by providing solutions to day-to-day challenges.

The key words there are day-to-day.

My experience is that focusing on the day-to-day conversations your managers have with their people is THE most critical part of their leadership activity.

When I talk about the day-to-day converstions, I’m really talking about the positive feedback conversations managers have to reinforce critical work behaviour, the corrective feedback conversations they have to get people back on track, and the conversations they have to identify solutions to the day-to-day challenges.

According to the Corporate Leadership Council:

  • Being fair and accurate in giving feedback increases individual performance by 39%.
  • Giving informal feedback that helps employees do their job better, increases individual performance by 25%.

These are BIG numbers, and they are generated by the day-to-day conversations managers have with their people.

This is where I’m going to encourage you and your managers to put your focus.

So, that’s it for the Productivity Lever.

Next week we’re going to discuss the importance of leadership process, and identify why you will want to document the leadership processes your firstline and middle managers should follow.

Until then, have a great week!


To get our report “The #1 Most Costly Leadership Development Mistake Businesses Make, and What to do About It”, which shows how to make sure you get the increases in employee performance and engagement you’re wanting from your leadership development program, for more profit, click here.


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