Productivity: It’s All A Matter of Confidence

This appeared in an email I received today from the UK’s Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).confidence-300x241

“Our latest Employee Outlook, in partnership with Halogen Software, surveyed over 2,000 UK employees who believe the most common hurdles to employee productivity are: 
unnecessary rules and procedures (28%)
not having the right resources (28%)
office politics (24%).

This highlights a need for employers to consider how they can increase the amount of autonomy employees have at work to use their skills and ideas through more empowering leadership and line management.”

One way of looking at this is that one in four or 25% of staff are not very confident about what they are doing!  They’re worried about being told off, not being able to get the job done or that they’re going to be stabbed in the back!  Not very confidence inspiring.

People in too many jobs, constrained by a welter of rules and regulations, have just lost sight of why they are doing what they’re doing; what service for others they provide.  It’s a matter of interpreting the rules and playing safe even if that means customers, internally or externally, are going to lose out.  Productivity is never going to increase if these lost souls are left floundering fearful of criticism from management for, what are often, minor infractions of rules, regulations and ill conceived policies.  We need cultures where people can do what they do with confidence.Confidence-Level

Leaders really do need to empower their people and have them brimming with well founded confidence in their abilities.  Simon Sinek tells us that really great leadership starts with compelling and inspiring WHY statements that make it clear what service to others is being provided by the organisation.  WHY to do something is much more encouraging that 25 reason for WHY NOT.   Sadly, too many organisations appear to have become bogged down in WHY NOTS.

If 25% of staff are lacking in something as fundamental as confidence, productivity levels are not very likely to rise and accelerate.  If you look at your own organisation how many WHYS are there as compared with the WHY NOTS or DON’TS?  The WHYS will inspire people and give them confidence.  The DON’TS will switch them off if there are a disproportionate numbers of them.  Clearly, some DON’TS are there for good reason but can they not be turned into positive WHY statements?

If you want to increase productivity in your organisation, build people’s confidence so that they can have a really positive impact in the world.

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