How do you know if your team is as productive as possible?

I’ve seen some weird calculations for productivity in businesses.  Most of the time, it depends on who is doing the measuring.

Since we’re talking about visual management systems and productivity as a measure for the team, we have to think clearly about what our team members need to know about productivity and delivery.

We have to know our team’s output.  What is it that they produce and deliver to customers?  What are they supposed to accomplish every day?

Everyone assembles some type of product, even if it’s an information product like a report to your boss.  In places where you only do that once a month, how do you know if you’re being productive every day?

It comes down to daily targets set by the leaders.  These targets will break down the product or service to a daily chunk of work, then we’ll measure our progress against that target.

In the easy case, my team needs to produce 24 scopes today, in one 8 hour shift.  Our target output is 24, but it’ll help me keep pace if I break that down to 3 per hour.  I can check every hour now to see if we’re on track to hit the target.  If the plan is 24 and the actual is 24, in its simplest form, that’s 100% productivity.

Setting those targets isn’t arbitrary though.  The target needs to be based on actual demand, and the team needs to be staffed to complete the work assigned.  If it takes the team longer than 20 minutes to complete that scope on average, they’ll never be able to keep pace and hit the target.

I have all kinds of ways to help you determine your demand, your pace, and your targets that will give you truthful information and help you make better decisions.  I’ve done this with government offices, with manufacturers of everything from steel to apparel, with insurance providers, fast food retailers, warehouses, and hospitals.

Call me and let me help you build a more productive team.

Have a great day and I’ll see you tomorrow.