How to Increase Productivity by Rearranging Your Bedroom

There are many things you need to consider when you are planning to use Feng Shui in your bedroom. According to this belief, the bedroom is a very productive place, but its productivity can be hampered in various ways. Here we see some things that you must do and some that you mustn’t when you are planning to implement Feng Shui in your bedroom.

The colors on the walls are the first important thing. By all means use warm earth tones. This will create a positive energy and a sense of vibrancy in the bedroom. If you are looking for a partner or love, go for passionate colors like red. Or, use a color that reminds you of human skin. These colors are great to build a very positive human vibe in your bedroom.

The lighting is important too, because the kind of lighting you use will directly influence the energy flowing into the room. Bright lights are definitely recommended, but if you think these are unsuitable for a bedroom then you can go for dimmer adjustments for the lights in your bedroom. Or, you could have some candles in your bedroom. When you need to dim the light, just light those candles up. There is an added advantage here. Perfumes and scents are highly praised in Feng Shui. So, see if you can lay your hands on some perfumed or scented candles of your choice.

The next important thing (though we aren’t saying all these in any particular order) is air. The amount of air that flows into your bedroom is directly proportional to the amount of energy that’s flowing inside as well. Hence, you have to make sure that there is ample amount of air flowing inside. Keep the bedroom window open as much as you can afford to keep. However, if you keep your windows closed all the time, there will be a musty non-aerated smell in your room, which is highly detrimental to progress.

You have to also look into the placement of the bed. How should you place the bed? Two things are important. Firstly is that your bed should not be in a proper alignment with the door. The second thing is that you must make sure your feet do not point toward the door because in local Chinese culture, this is a harbinger of death. Also, don’t keep the bed touching a wall. It should be free to access from both the sides. There must be enough area on both sides of the bed. Place a bed table at either sides of the bed and always approach the bed on the side that you will be sleeping.

If you are looking for love, your bed should have a single mattress that covers it entirely and not two parts for either side of the bed. The positive energy that Feng Shui creates will make loving your partner a delight.

Besides these, there is one other much vital point. You must make sure that you don’t keep anything related with work or even anything that’s not needed in the bedroom. So, keep your laptops, your mobile phones your iPods, your television sets out of the bedroom and enjoy what these places are really meant for.

Immediate Productivity Increase With One Simple Habit, "Motivation Through Recognition"

Information Technologies have become critical and an integral part of any organization’s delivery, and indeed it is difficult to imagine any modern organization effectively and efficiently delivering without IT. In the current economic environment, IT departments operate with reduced budgets while striving to deliver best services. In today’s highly competitive and rapidly changing global marketplace, it is increasingly important to maximise productivity of Information Technology employees.

This article is a call to pause and reflect on the importance of motivation and how best to create a highly motivated and therefore more productive IT workforce.

Motivation is defined as the reason or reasons that someone has for acting or behaving in a particular way or the general desire or willingness of someone to do something. It gives the reasons for people’s actions, desires, and needs.

Managing IT personnel is challenging, and when motivational tools that are available to the managers may be limited, there is a need to seek proficient methods and styles in order to keep employees motivated. When you understand the thinking and behavioural triggers of employee and the employee understands the strategy and objectives and the value of their contribution, then you are able to maximize their enthusiasm and engagement and rapidly move in the same direction. One of the most effective methods of providing positive feedback is by “Motivation through recognition”.

One of the primary roles of management is to state and define the work objectives and mission, and identify strategies to achieve the stated goals with scarce resources. In an environment where there is a continuous drive to do more with less, it is easy to focus on what is broken and try to fix it and give less importance on pointing out where employees are doing well.

Having an employee work for an organization for many years should be considered an asset to the workplace, but can you imagine going a full year without receiving any type of recognition? It is essential that employees feel that they are valued for the work that they are producing and that by recognizing their achievements their rewards will go beyond productivity by making them feel part of the solution, part of the strategy and success of the organization as a whole. Recognition should focus on an employee’s contributions and efforts and not focus only on how long they have held the position. If they have done a great job, let them know that on the spot.

While building the recognition programs, we must always remember that in a multicultural environment, there is a need to recognize that individuals visualize problems and solutions from different perspectives and that consideration and appreciation needs to be made for the diversity of approaches. Having a vision that is malleable and encourages employees to come up with new ideas is a skill of a good manager. Nothing will motivate an employee more than knowing that he or she has contributed something unique that has changed an approach in a positive way.

By leveraging an effective recognition program within the organization managers could avoid one other issue, employee turnover, which is expensive and slows down productivity. Companies with recognition programs have a lower voluntary turnover.

Gratitude is one of the most effective forms of showing and gaining that trust from employees. Appreciating employees for their work and letting your employee, say, take free rein over a project, is one of the non-verbal forms of showing recognition (you have trusted them to do their job).

Good productive employees need to feel valued at work and there really is no such thing as “too much recognition”. If you really want to increase productivity and keep your employees, motivate them through recognition. That simple validation has the power to exponentially increase productivity in the workplace.

Below is the Cost-benefit analysis of employee recognition as stated in the article “Why employee recognition is so important – By Kim Harrison”. http://www.cuttingedgepr.com/articles/emprecog_so_important.asp

“The cost of a recognition system is quite small and the benefits are large when implemented effectively. Meta-analysis conducted by the Gallup Organization of the results from 10,000 business units in 30 industries found [a meta-analysis is the statistical analysis of results across more than one study]:

Benefits

Increased individual productivity – the act of recognizing desired behaviour increases the repetition of the desired behaviour, and therefore productivity. This is classic behavioural psychology. The reinforced behaviour supports the organization’s mission and key performance indicator.

Greater employee satisfaction and enjoyment of work – more time spent focusing on the job and less time complaining.

Direct performance feedback for individuals and teams is provided.

Higher loyalty and satisfaction scores from customers.

Teamwork between employees is enhanced.

Retention of quality employees increases – lower employee turnover.

Better safety records and fewer accidents on the job.

Lower negative effects such as absenteeism and stress.

Costs

Time spent in designing and implementing the program.

Time taken to give recognition.

Dollar cost of the recognition items given.

Time and cost of teaching people how to give recognition.

Costs of introducing a new process.

In conclusion, it is clear that recognition is a critical component of any organizational workforce strategy. By encouraging and supporting effective recognition practices, managers can improve delivery of their mandates, which results in a more effective workforce. Developing motivation and providing recognition to employees are relatively simple and inexpensive strategies. Employees are motivated by different factors and managers should get to know their employees and tailor the ways in which recognition and motivation are provided to each individual. When efforts are made to create motivated teams and support recognition, employee commitment to the organization and motivation are more likely to increase.

Four Motivational Mantra:

“Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers.” –Stephen R. Covey, author of The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.

“To win in the marketplace you must first win in the workplace.” –Doug Conant, Fmr. President and CEO of the Campbell Soup Company.

“An employee’s motivation is a direct result of the sum of interactions with his or her manager.” -Dr. Bob Nelson, Best Selling Author and Motivational Speaker.

“People work for money but go the extra mile for recognition, praise and rewards.” -Dale Carnegie, Leadership Training Guru.

Lean Process Improvement – A Means for Service Companies to Increase Productivity and Responsiveness

Lean has brought about amazing changes on the factory floor. Many U.S. firms recognize that in today’s markets, the speed of response to customer demands is a key competitive advantage. These firms have worked continuously to reduce their manufacturing cycle times. By applying lean concepts, companies have transformed the factory and made considerable reductions in manufacturing throughput times; reductions in cycle time in excess of 50 percent are not uncommon.

The principles of Lean Process Improvement can be applied to service processes as well as manufacturing processes. By rethinking and streamlining service processes, some companies have cut expenses by 10 to 30 percent and made steep improvements in internal and external customer satisfaction.

With a few exceptions, companies have been slow to apply lean process improvement principles to service processes such as finance, human resources, accounting, health care and customer service. The problem stems from waste being invisible in service processes. Unlike on the factory floor, where idle workers and stacks of inventory are clear signs of broken processes, waste is usually hidden when it comes to services. It tends to lie in wait between functions and departments, so companies only see a small portion of the problem.

Service processes usually lack standardization. Every employee may have a different method for completing the same task. This lack of standardization and consistency is costly. Complex, inefficient processes are slower, have higher error rates and decrease overall responsiveness and customer satisfaction. There is also a human cost when employees are underutilized by spending their time on low value tasks, they have less time for more rewarding – higher value-added tasks.

Identifying the Problems

Service providers need to embrace the end-to-end process philosophy

Adopting this philosophy is critical to seeing and eliminating waste. Process waste in the form of excess steps, redundant activities, and non-value-added tasks cannot be pigeon-holed. Inefficiency in one part of the process spill over into other activities and other processes.

Inconsistency is a problem for many service processes

For example, during an assessment of a prospective client we observed that each customer service representative (CSR) in the same transaction center handled identical customer lab requests differently. The processing times for each CSR was highly variable as much as 50% difference between CSRs. Further analysis revealed that some CSRs were using short cut methods that decreased their cycle times. The company did not engage in cross-training or knowledge sharing that would improve the overall process and reduce the time in handling lab requests.

Another typical observation of service processes reveal the Pareto principle effect:

A small proportion of the work eats up a large percentage of the total time. A brief sampling of the transaction center processing time for lab requests indicated that approximately 80% of the transactions took about 40% of the total time, the remaining 20%, the more complex ones, accounted for about 60% of the total time. Exceptions like these are an enormous burden on productivity and are typical for most service processes.

Many service organizations are lack the ability or to analyze the workarounds, exceptions, and rework that effect productivity:

In the factory, targets for output and capacity utilization are established and measured, but most service businesses are unable to measure these performance metrics.

In manufacturing, the customer doesn’t see or care about the production process itself, if the product is of acceptable quality and delivered on time. But in health care, banking, insurance, and other service industries the customer is the product moving through the process-and experiencing first-hand the frustration of inefficiency, Satisfaction is crucial, whether the customer is internal or external. Poor satisfaction is costly when it prompts the customers to take their business to a competitor.

Overcoming the Challenges of Lean Service

Making services lean has its challenges. It requires creative thinking in adapting the lean methods to a service environment. To be successful implementing Lean Process Improvement in the service industry requires rethinking of how work is currently done. Being successful in your lean service initiative require the following six components.

Select and map your cross-functional processes

Most processes typically cross functions and departments, not many people involved with them have a complete picture of the end-to-end workflow, interdependencies, and the hidden interfaces. This usually result in costly inefficiencies and high error rates. Before a service process can be improved, its steps must be transparent. A detailed analysis of the process and its subprocesses often reveals inefficiencies, workarounds, and complexity, as well as major performance improvement opportunities. Look for non-valued added steps and analyze information flows to identify silos and constraints.

Reduce complexity whenever possible

Complexity is a major contributor to process inefficiency. Rethink and redesign the process to eliminate elements that sap efficiency. Establish a subroutine for handling exceptions. This allows employees to work more quickly and productively with fewer interruptions.

Define and standardize the work

Focus on reducing variation and increasing knowledge of the process by gathering the input of the people doing the work to arrive at the best-known way to do the work. Once the best-known way is determined, document the methods so that the process steps are repeatable.

Exploit the power of big data

Dramatic advances in computing power and processing speed allow companies to gather large amounts of data and perform data analytics to minimize waste, reduce costs, and improve overall process performance.

Establish and track performance metrics

Establish a set of measures. These measures will help continuously monitor how well the process is performing to customer requirements and provide data that will help you identify and solve process problems.

Cross-train to increase productivity

In some service processes the workload is uneven at different times of the day leading to periods of high activity mixed with periods of downtime. Cross training employees to step in to assist in areas with high workloads can increase productivity and customer satisfaction while reducing these periods of uncontrolled activity.

Implementing lean process improvement in service processes requires continued commitment from the top, but lean is driven from the bottom-up. In other words, service workers are the best source of customer insight and process improvement, so it is important to involve them at the outset of the lean initiative.

For the last 50 years manufacturers have used lean tools to improve productivity, eliminate waste and improve efficiency. The same lean tools can be applied to the service industry, where inconsistency and a lack of standardization increases errors, slow response times and hurt customer satisfaction. By embracing the six components described above, service companies can increase productivity and customer responsiveness.