While this cartoon might be a bit of an exaggeration, we could all most likely agree that this depicts exactly what catching an employee being very unproductive looks like. Whether it’s in human resources and administration or another industry, it’s likely that you have been in the same situation as Maddie and Frog from the cartoon. Companies want and need employees who can buckle down and get work done, upping an employee’s monthly productivity and (hopefully) adding to the success of the company. The challenge is to help keep your employees engaged at work. So, what is to be done?

As we’ve talked about before, the brain works better when you’re in a positive mood. Happier employees tend to be more productive. Fast Company reported that a study from the University of Warwick found “that happiness led to a 12% spike in productivity, while unhappy workers proved 10% less productive. As the research team put it, “We find that human happiness has large and positive causal effects on productivity. Positive emotions appear to invigorate human beings.” Several aspects of the workplace can contribute to an employee’s happiness level at work, such as the company culture or management. As a manager, you can help your employees remain positive and productive. Also, think about your own happiness and attitude at work. Does it reflect your expectations that you hold for your employees? Researchers from Warwick also argued that happier employees make better managers or officers. Some companies even have a CHO or Chief Happiness Officer.

an employee's monthly productivity
Now, after some thought, you’re saying your employees are as happy as can be. How can you continue to help them be happy and productive? Consider any of these 7 ways suggested by Forbes Contributor Victor Lipman:

  • Design economic incentives so employees at all levels of an organization can benefit from them.
  • Provide meaningful feedback in a constructive manner on a regular basis.
  • Respect employees as individuals, in addition to the job they do.
  • Be sure management at all levels of an organization receives adequate training in productivity.
  • Provide support for employees when it’s genuinely needed.
  • Don’t be emotionally stingy.
  • Ensure senior leadership models behavior such as keeping your word and follow through that makes the rank-and-file proud to be part of the team.

Nowadays, it’s a scientific fact that are attention spans are getting progressively shorter. It’s a challenge everyday to fight the distractions, especially with the steady stream of social media, but one that you and your team can beat over and over again with determination and focus. As Merlin Mann says, “Joining a Facebook group about creative productivity is like buying a chair about jogging.”

One way to increase an employee’s monthly productivity of your HR Department which frees you up to work on the action steps above is to outsource the core HR functions of Payroll, Benefits Administration and HR Support.  Corban OneSource is a Mid Market Human Resource Outsourcer or HRO for companies of 75 to 6,000 employees that can help you do just that.   Find out more here.