May 6, 2024
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How to Improve Employee Performance While Not Being a Toxic Boss

Managers are often under a lot of pressure. It’s just part of the role. You have to answer to higher-ups while also ensuring you are handling their subordinates. When things go wrong, you are the one who gets blamed, and it’s tough not to grow a thick shell.
Unfortunately, this ends up biting you in the back later on when you need to stimulate your employees. If you’ve built a reputation for being tough to work under, it can be hard to achieve the task.
A study by Slack and Qualtricks showed that 71% of business leaders are pressured by executives to increase employee productivity. What do you do when you get such an order from above? How do you handle such a situation on the ground? Let’s find out. 

1. Run Employee Training Programs the Right Way

One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to put your employees through a poorly run training program. No one benefits from being propped in front of a screen and staring at a bunch of slides. It rarely works because people learn by action. A good training program is integrated into the workflow. Thus, you may have to either design a custom program or state your requirements to whoever is in charge of training. 

You can also make use of the many third-party services that recognize and meet practical training requirements. Employees will thank you in their hearts and maybe even directly if you avoid the time-wasting corporate approach. 

If you have a lot of younger employees, consider using a training service solution like the one provided by https://mybites.io/. It focuses on a social media-styled ‘bites’ training system. The benefit is that you can get employees up to speed on new requirements without long and boring training courses.

2. Be Open-Minded About Where Productivity Comes From

The funny thing about increasing productivity is that many managers ironically prevent it through their inflexibility. Some managers have the belief that productivity only increases when employees work overtime. 

Anything else is simply a distraction or a cop-out. However, when you fail to look at other perspectives, you end up missing the mark on the very goal you set out to achieve. 

Sometimes, a need for control also pushes managers into becoming toxic, even at the cost of productivity. Look at Rockstar Games, who recently ordered all their employees to return to working from the office rather than from home. 

The officially cited reasons were productivity issues and security concerns. However, several employees believe these concerns aren’t legitimate.

It’s only a matter of time until these workers become burned out by poor management and quit. If productivity increases with an unconventional solution, give it some freedom rather than stifling it. 

If you see the opportunity for unconventional methods that hold promise, don’t be hesitant. Hold an open or anonymous discussion where employees can pitch their ideas about what they think would help them work more effectively. 

Sure, you might get some unrealistic replies. However, options like a four-day workweek, flexible hours, and ample breaks are all legitimate strategies. 

They have been proven to yield results and warrant a closer look. Regardless of the suggestion, keep an open mind, and you will be pleasantly surprised by the results

3. Lead by Example

As a manager, you are essentially in a leadership position. It would be a shame if you failed to fill those shoes, as is your responsibility. Leading by example is the best way to motivate employees to work hard.
After all, from their perspective, why should they work hard if someone higher up kicks up their feet and slacks off? However, when they see you putting in hard work, it’s going to have an effect.
As long as you aren’t managing a completely apathetic team, this is a surefire way to start lighting a fire under people. The best part? You don’t have to poke and prod people and call them in to get things moving.
Leading by example builds team cohesion and also helps set the standard for what is expected. Your efforts go a long way toward providing clarity about what is expected of each worker.
In conclusion, increasing productivity is a common enough goal for many companies. As a result, you won’t find a lack of strategies that you can employ. However, the difference will come down to how you choose to implement them. Lead by example, be open-minded, and run effective training programs.
With these three steps, you will see a lot of improvement without having to play the role of a toxic boss. 

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