5 Ways to Improve Productivity of a Business

The scramble to complete deadlines. The sending and receiving of a volley of emails and phone calls.  We’ve been there. We’ve done that. And it seems like more and more companies like to chase the motto “Do more with less”. But what does that even mean? How are we supposed to do more with less?

The answer lies in our productivity. In simplest terms, we understand productivity as the state or trait of being productive. And in a business context ; the concept of productivity is simple; it’s to find out the effectiveness of productive effort; basically to answer the question “How much output are you getting for the input you put in?”.

In simple English, the more you are able to do at lesser effort and time put in, the higher your productivity is. Read the previous sentence again. “But how?” you may ask. Here’s the good news; it only comes down to 5 simple steps for a workplace. You need to keep the various aspects of your work SMART. No, not as in clean and tidy; as in keeping your work:




Realistic, and


So let’s break this down.


Keeping your work specific means to ensure that whatever tasks you are doing are well-defined and clear. And with the current situation of organizations around the world working remotely; everyone clearly defining what their roles are becomes that much more important.

Making a goal specific means that you can answer the following questions:

Who does the deliverable involves? Are you doing it yourself or do you need to work with a team on this? This can change how to work towards a deliverable entirely.

What do you need to accomplish?

Where do you need to do this given deliverable?

When is this particular deliverable to be done by?

Why does you need to do this deliverable? There’s no use doing a deliverable unless its purpose is understood.

In the process of answering these questions, you can optimize your productivity in two ways. First off;  be proactive, not reactive!  It’s good to set aside time for responding to emails. But this cannot be the only determinant of what your day will shape out like. Having a plan of attack at the start of each day, and then optimally adhering to it would increase your productivity. Next, avoiding multitasking. This might look like you’re accomplishing more things at once, but attempting completion of several tasks at the same time can mean a lack of clarity towards addressing each task, resulting in lost time and your productivity with it.


Let’s say your specific goal was to lose weight at a gym. Would your workout would be nearly as effective without knowing how much weight exactly? Definitely not.  Likewise, in the workplace, keeping your deliverables measurable is needed. This means that your deliverables need to have criteria for tracking your progress. Without any criteria as a metric, you’ll be unable to exactly determine your progress towards the deliverable’s goals, resulting in less productivity due to not being able to reach your goal.

Making a deliverable measurable, comes down to asking yourself the following questions :

What progress indicators am I using to check the progress on my deliverables?

How do I know the goals for the given timeframe have been attained?

How much is needed to be done?

In the process of answering said questions (specially the last one), you can consider  delegating some  of your tasks. This is especially considering leading a team, since no one person needs to dominate and take on the full responsibility load. Attempting to do so, accompanied by the potential social loafing of teammates, can result in loss of productivity.


Your deliverables also need to be achievable and attainable, as this is critical in helping figure out ways that the goals can be accomplished, and work towards it. For optimal productivity, the deliverable’s achievability of the goal should be stretched to pose a moderate challenge, yet defined clearly enough to be able to actually achieve it.  The questions to be answered for keeping deliverables achievable are as follows:

What are the resources and capabilities available toward achieving my goal? Do I need any resources? Are any missing?

Has it been done successfully before?

For answering this, preparation is paramount. Firstly, the preparation of the right tools and equipment. This is not just for operations, but for setting up towards meetings as well. In today’s current situation of extended remote working, accompanied by multitude of tools to address them; tools will have to be carefully chosen based on purpose, performance, and price.

And in the context of voice conferencing; MultiCall comes in as an effective solution for enhancing productivity. Among many notable features that drive it as a productivity tool, are the abilities to make simultaneous group calls at just a click of a button, with superior sound quality, and to schedule calls ahead of time. All this is at minimal use of data since it does not require the participants to have the app.

Available both on Google and Apple App Store, the app, especially in the context of business, eliminates aspects such as individually signing in. It also eliminates the setting of moderator and security pin number that otherwise comprise the setup of a conference. The step of preparation also includes that of a workplace too. Environments that are too hot or cold can hamper concentration; affecting ability to complete tasks and therein the productivity with it.


Having no clear, strong sense of whether employees are high-performing or not can also affect productivity. Employees will therefore need to be helped by offering goals that are achievable. Done by provision clear direction to supervisors and employees to help clarify expectations. The deliverables need to be realistic in that it can be realistically achieved, given both the available resources and the timeframe allotted. This comes down to answering the questions of :

Whether the goals are realistic and within reach.

Whether it is reachable given the time and resources, and

Whether the company can commit towards attaining said goals.

With a clear focus and clear goals, your productivity will increase. Keeping work tasks realistic is also done by constant practice of positive reinforcement. Encourage your employees regularly, or provide them constructive criticism when there is room to improve for the tasks.


A race has a start and a finish line. So does a SMART deliverable; in terms of the date to start and finish the same. Without any time constraint on the goal, there is no sense of urgency and motivation to achieve it, which can therein compromise productivity.  This comes down to asking whether:

A deliverable has a deadline, and

By when does the deliverable need to be achieved.

To maximize productivity, multiple measures can be considered. The first would be the two-minute rule. The core idea of this particular measure is aimed at making the most of small time-windows available at work. If there are tasks that can be quickly accomplished in a few minutes; these can take priority due to quicker achievability for the day.

Second, it’s necessary to track and limit time spent on tasks. Being able to boost the accuracy of estimated time needed to complete variables would mean being able to optimize the productivity at a workplace. Last, but not least, keeping tasks time-measured also includes the element of maintaining time slots that clearly keep away from aspects such as Social Media, and Personal Phone / Email Usage.

Failing to prepare is as good as preparing to fail. By setting general and unrealistic goals such as “Being the best at A”, you risk losing on productivity and fail. Setting goals and deliverables to be SMART, however, means that employees can exceed expectations, and therein improve the productivity of a business.

“You cannot mandate productivity, you must provide the tools to let people become their best.” – Steve Jobs

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