When you hear the words Productivity Tool what springs to mind? Collaboration and project management platforms like Asana, Pagico, Trello, Proofhub, Teams? Time management and scheduling software like 10to8, RescueTime and Serene? Or perhaps tools to help you manage your tools like Zapier or LastPass? All designed to help us be more organised, save time, communicate efficiently and generally make better use of our energy and resources so that we can achieve better outcomes, with less friction and more satisfaction.
All these tools are great but they don’t transform a workplace or team that is inherently dysfunctional.
It is like putting the proverbial lipstick on a pig.
So what is the ultimate productivity tool? What is it that empowers a team to bring their A-game to work, to be invested in their outcomes, strive harder to overcome inevitable challenges, bounce back from setbacks, stay energised in the face of heavy workloads, support each other in tough times so they can ALL raise the bar on their effectiveness?
One word – RESPECT!
The latest research, fresh from Kansas State University in collaboration with the University of Missouri’s Novak Leadership Institute, shows that Millennials, above all, care how they are treated at work.
Who knew! Help people to feel valued and productivity surges, retention increases, loyalty rises, engagement lifts, well-being improves. What’s not to like.
But demonstrating respect goes waaaay beyond just being polite or saying “thank you” for a job well done.
People want what is referred to as Autonomous Respect. This has to do with feeling respected for who you are and not just what you do.
How do we nurture and show Autonomous Respect for our team-members and co-workers?
It’s very simple. Take an interest and find out about their passions outside of work. This then makes it possible for leaders to collaboratively craft development opportunities that have deep meaning and significance for their team members; which serve both as professional AND personal development.
Brightly coloured bean bags and yoga at lunchtime just doesn’t cut it any more – especially in a WFH world. Superficial perks don’t create a sense of purpose within people. But understanding what motivates and drives them and then committing to helping them achieve their goals and grow into their best selves – does.
Doesn’t get much simpler than that and yet these two exercises can be transformative for team culture, productivity and performance. If you would like to read some of the first-hand case studies where this has happened for people in the Leading in the Innovation Age Mentoring Program – they can be found in my book of the same name.
For more information about this transformative leadership development program download the brochure here. Reach out to me if any questions.
(And by the way here’s my fav version of R.E.S.P.E.C.T. by Aretha.)
Dr. Irena Yashin-Shaw
Visiting Global Professor The Ohio State University
Visiting Postgraduate Lecturer Corporate Entrepreneurship and Change Griffith University
Founder Global Intrapreneurs Institute
Editor-in-Chief Intrapreneur Magazine
M: +61 411 330 301