Busy Facility Managers have a lot to juggle throughout the day and cannot always track employee or contractor productivity or efficiency easily.
But, there are things you can do as a facility manager to help overcome the most common reasons for a lack of proper time management of employees and contractors in the field.
Landport Systems put together a short list of the five (5) most common struggles a busy facility manager, (or any business manager) can face, and how to overcome them.
#1: Employees or contractors don’t finish what they start. There are many reasons someone may not finish a project. To combat any uncertainty, busy facility managers should ensure employees have a firm grasp on the end vision for any project. This will help everyone stay on task and know what they are working towards. Deadlines are also helpful and can be an incentive for productivity.
#2: Employees or contractors in the field procrastinate. Lack of deadlines, or of proper information to get a job done, is often the cause of procrastination. Many people leave their work to the last minute, giving them a rush when they complete it in such a short amount of time. However, this is not sustainable. As the boss, offer options rather than threats, and encourage creative problem-solving. Giving feedback can also make sure less time is wasted, and ensures employees are staying on-task.
#3: Workers are easily distracted by the little things; unimportant to the task at hand or overall goal. Project Managers should encourage employees to focus on one work order at a time. While the idea of multitasking is great, the actual practice of multitasking does not work. The key is to find the right balance between working on something long enough, but not too long. Blocking out time with a method such as the Pomodoro Technique, will increase focus and productivity.
#4: Employee doesn’t know when to move on from a project or task. Recognizing when something is not going well is key to knowing when it’s time to cut your losses and move onto a different project or task. Busy facility managers need to gather feedback from employees routinely about active work orders, and use the feedback to provide helpful insight that keeps workers focused on what is working; letting go of what is not.
#5: Employees feel overwhelmed. Prioritization is the real problem here. This goes hand in hand with bullet #3. Focusing on a few tasks, or even just one per day will likely increase productivity. Keep in mind, not everything needs to be done immediately. Some work orders and tasks can be put off a little while to make room for more pressing priorities. A prioritization list can be a helpful way for busy facility managers to keep track of everything that needs to get done in the big picture. This, then, enables the project manager to prioritize a list of tasks and work orders for workers in the field; singling out a few tasks at a time, and keeping everyone much happier, less stressed and more productive.