3 Ways To Do More With Less, And Less With More
I recently asked an HR development director at a leading UK insurance provider:
“Just curious - what seems to be keeping managers awake at night in your industry? What are you noticing as the biggest challenges people are struggling with?”
And he wrote back:
“Doing more with less (and not doing it yourself and working longer hours)
Achieving high performance through our employees (the engagement piece) “
You don’t have to be in the insurance industry to be having the same thoughts. And these two challenges are related.
Doing more with less is about working in a way that lets you get the most out of the efforts of your people and the resources you have.
Three ways to do more with less:
- It’s too easy to let ourselves get mired in our own bit of a process. Get people across departmental/functional groups to work together frequently to share insights and make processes as smooth as possible.
- If people don’t know and trust each other - everything takes a lot longer. Investing time upfront to create and maintain bonds and supportive ways of behaving pays off big time. Part of that is knowing that how meetings are conducted and information is shared is as important as what is shared and when.
- Focus on where you want to go, what’s helping you to get there, and what you need to do more of. If you focus on what the problems are - you will waste two precious resources - time and motivation. Take a direct route to progress, with a Solution Focus (for resources, click here).
Doing less with more is about prioritizing projects and activities so employees can bring more of themselves to the tasks that they are doing. Achieving high performance through employees means not overloading them.
Three ways to do less with more:
- People naturally go through peaks and troughs of performance. In the troughs, people store up energy and reflect on key insights for the peaks. If managers constantly try to turn troughs into peaks, then people get burned out. Each individual has a different rhythm. Working with each person to align what they need with what the organisation needs will enable him/her to bring more impact, inspiration and insight to what they do.
- Align approaches to achieve strategies based on the resources you currently have, not on the ones you had before headcount and resources got reduced. Lean times are great opportunities for finding innovative solutions to use resources more effectively.
- Growth at any cost is not a smart investment. Delivering 3 projects brilliantly is better than delivering 5 projects to average satisfaction. Which reputation would you rather have with your clients? Delight or ambivalence?
How are you doing more with less, and less with more in your organisation?
Sleep tight, business leaders...
Note: photo from http://eternal-life-diary.blogspot.com/2011/01/insomnia.html