12 Actionable Ways to Improve Your Performance at Work

Most people want to do a good job at work but sometimes struggle with how. You feel stuck in your current position and want to do more, but you can’t see how it can happen. This has led many people to wonder how they can improve their performance at work. 

Or maybe you were a superstar at work, but you’ve slowed down and can’t figure out why. You still go to work every day, but you’re not the same employee that you used to be. It is important to find ways to be more productive and improve your performance at work while at the same time enjoying your job.

If it seems like you’ve hit a plateau in your career, there are some ways to get back on track. Here is a compilation of strategies and actionable tips on how to improve performance at work, be more productive, and increase your bottom line.

1. Don’t Compromise on Communication and Relationship Building

It’s no secret that some businesses can have more success than others. Many factors come into play, but I believe that the way you communicate and how you build your relationships can make or break you.

Poor communication with your colleagues can lead to stress and conflicts. There is so much to gain by building relationships within your company. The benefits of having a good relationship with co-workers are immeasurable, both in your career and personal life.

When it comes to improving performance at work, success often depends on the ability to communicate and build strong relationships with others. This is especially important for team-based approaches, where individual achievement may be less important than the overall effectiveness of a group.

SEE: Here’s why communication skills are important in the workplace

2. Limit Distractions 

If you want to be more productive, you must eliminate distractions from your daily schedule. Common sense dictates that the more distractions there are, the harder it is to reach your goal in a given amount of time.

For example, social media or text messages may derail productivity and negatively impact your business by drawing attention away from the task at hand. Make sure you limit distractions wherever possible so that people can focus on working efficiently and effectively. 

Try choosing one thing at a time to focus on. If you find yourself thinking about something that isn’t related to your task, write it down and think about it later. You may spend less time working when you have multiple tasks waiting for you because your mind jumps from one thing to another.

SEE: Discover why attention to detail is important at work

3. Invest in Proper Work-Oriented Training

Why do we demand so much education for our children, yet so little for ourselves? We are constantly learning more about parenting and the latest research on teaching children. Yet we don’t extend this way of thinking to the workplace. 

It can be hard to know exactly where you can improve your performance at work, but that’s where training comes in. It’s sometimes enough to bring up the topic with your boss to get them to see what you need. Also, if there is little training available in your company, it could be worth investing in yourself and taking online courses.

Also, for employers, proper work-oriented training means investing in employees and ensuring that they understand their roles and feel engaged. This provides a happy and productive environment for all employees as well as managers.

SEE: Discover the benefits of continuous learning at work

4. Set Realistic Goals and Expectations 

Most of us like to think that we know what we’re capable of, but what happens when you take on a task that’s out of your league? Your productivity suffers. To help stave off these effects and keep yourself accountable, set realistic milestones for yourself so you don’t bite off more than you can chew.

Whether you work alone or with a team of people, setting realistic goals and expectations is an important part of any business. If your goals aren’t realistic and attainable, you’ll soon become frustrated and may abandon them altogether. 

Setting realistic and achievable goals means making the most of resources promptly. You should also be honest about the work it will take and try not to feel discouraged when things don’t go as quickly as you’d like.

The biggest downfall for many people is that they set unrealistic or unreasonable goals and expectations. By starting small and setting realistic goals, you have a better chance of reaching them and being productive in the process.

5. Leverage Technology and Use the Right Tools

When you’re running a business, you don’t have time to do everything manually. Although you might think that conventional approaches will ensure accuracy and attention to detail, technology can help with both of those things. You simply need to find the right technology for your needs.

The potential for technology to improve business processes is enormous, across virtually all industries. Furthermore, modern technology presents a variety of tools for people to use, and using the right tools is key to running a successful business.

A just-in-time inventory system optimizes your labor force and increases efficiency by helping you keep track of the product deliveries needed and when. This also helps keep businesses in compliance with their customers’ needs.

However, the first step in improving productivity is to acknowledge that there are processes that need improvement. Analyze your business and identify areas where technology can be utilized to improve processes, productivity, and efficiency.

6. Prioritize Tasks

Your most important work task is the one most important thing to do at work every day. Often it’s something you’ve been putting off or procrastinating on, but you need to get it done first. It’s a top priority, and there is no way around it.

Prioritize your tasks to improve your performance. Not all tasks are created equal. Look for high-value/high payoff projects and make sure they get attention first. Too often, employees spend time on unimportant tasks that are easier to complete or feel more urgent than they are. In turn, they neglect larger, more essential duties that may require hours of the invention or thought to properly complete.

To prioritize tasks, ask yourself: what is the most important task for you to get done today, and what less important things can wait until tomorrow? Prioritizing your tasks means that you focus the most on getting things done in the order of importance.

7. Identify your Strengths and Weakness

The type of job you’re in, your style, and the conditions of your workplace all impact your performance. By identifying your strengths and weaknesses as an employee or a manager, you will be able to capitalize on your strengths and improve your skills in other areas.

Identify yourself as a strong individual who can succeed at the tasks you’re good at, and accept that there are some things that you need help with. Once you know what those are, it’ll be easier to find someone to assist you in those areas, leaving you free to focus on being successful where you excel.

8. Look for Opportunities to Learn New Skills

Studies about workplace productivity and new technologies show that these are changing constantly. By keeping yourself informed and learning new skills, you are likely to improve your productivity in the workplace. For some, work begins and ends with just getting the job done. But, you can stand out if you start looking for new ways to enhance your performance. Learning new skills is a great way to get ahead of the competition.

Everybody is capable of learning at every age, whether it’s a new language, technical skill, or even just how to meditate. It’s never too late to learn new things at work and better yourself. In business, if you don’t keep upgrading your skills, you are on the downside. Most of your colleagues and competitors out there are either already learning new skills or seeking to learn new ones. 

A skill once mastered today can be outdated in a few months or years. Don’t be afraid to take various courses or reach out for group training. There’s always something you can strive for.

SEE: Discover skills employers are looking for to increase your marketability 

9. Participate in Leadership Workshops and Seminars

One way to improve performance at work is to take the initiative and participate in leadership workshops and seminars that can help you develop the skills you need to succeed. The most successful companies support their employees when they want to further their skills and careers. 

If it’s training that you need, they’ll invest in your development. If it’s setting a structure or a process that would be beneficial, they will incorporate this into the work environment. If your goal is to continue your professional growth while you’re with your company, you can’t miss out on these opportunities.

SEE: Check out leadership skills that will make you a great leader

10. Whenever Necessary, Take a Break

Few people can sustain peak performance at work at all times. Men and women who have clear goals and deadlines are often the ones who have to maintain this level of attention to detail. When you feel your quality of work or quantity of work drop, take the time out for a break.

As an entrepreneur, you might feel that you need to be constantly busy every single day. You want results, and if you’re not working hard, then you’re not getting anywhere. However, this is a common misconception among small business owners. 

Experts agree that to be more efficient during the day, it is essential to take a break from time to time. Taking regular breaks throughout the day helps boost productivity and creativity. It also improves your attention span. 

Taking regular breaks leads to greater productivity by helping reduce stress and fatigue at work. By giving yourself a few minutes of downtime throughout the day, you’ll be able to recharge your batteries and stay focused later on. 

11. Be organized 

How many times have you forgotten your keys right before you are out the door? Or misplaced your wallet? Or worse, left a gift at home for a party? When you’re in a mad rush, it’s difficult to think clearly and make smart decisions. You can start improving your decision-making by getting organized.

If there’s one thing all business leaders have in common, it’s their organizational skills. Being organized keeps stress down and productivity up. Being organized is key in the workplace. It leads to improved time management and productivity, reduces stress, and increases your effectiveness at work. 

If you don’t have good organizational skills, it might be time for you to develop some.

SEE: Learn about organizational skills and how to put them into good use

12. Embrace Mistakes as Valuable Opportunities to Improve

Everyone makes mistakes. The best runners in the world can’t win every race. As long as you learn from them, mistakes can be invaluable lessons to improve your performance at work. Criticism is a natural and healthy aspect of life. Making mistakes is a part of life, and in the majority of situations, they’re not a huge deal. 

Yes, this is true at work as well. If something goes wrong, the whole world isn’t going to end and you’re not going to get fired (hopefully). 

This doesn’t mean you should always make mistakes. However, if they happen, you have to learn from them and become better as a result. Turn these opportunities into invaluable lessons that you can use throughout your career to help develop your skills and become a more reliable employee.

FAQs

Is it truly possible to achieve top-notch performance at work?

Yes, it is possible. However, it can be tricky. But performing to the best of your ability and being recognized for it at work can be very rewarding. Being successful in your career also provides you with a sense of accomplishment and pride in your life outside of the office.

How can employers keep workers motivated?

One way to get employees engaged and motivated is by giving them clear goals. If your workers don’t understand what they are working towards, they won’t have the motivation to complete their work. 

Furthermore, educate your employees about your organization’s mission and values so there is a shared understanding of the importance of their role. Communicate the achievements and contributions being made by teams and individuals to help them feel proud of the work they do.

Final Thoughts 

I hope these few suggestions will help you improve your work performance and create a healthy work environment that can foster development in the workplace. Having good working habits is vital to a successful career, so try to incorporate as many of these tips into your workplace as possible. 

Also, keep in mind that learning how to improve efficiency at work is not something that you do once and then move on from; it is an ongoing process that requires regular attention, effort, and constant improvement.

Another way employers can improve their employees’ performance is through cross-training. As a result of such training, employers can easily put all hands on deck when necessary. Performance and productivity increase when everyone knows what they are doing.

Thanks for reading.