Productivity in the Workplace Term Paper

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Productivity in the Workplace

An average employee lives around 10,000 days of his lifetime working. When one looks at it this way, it is rational to try and make this time at work as gratifying and rewarding as one can, so that people can be saved from burning out in advance. As a matter of fact, it is proven by research that the easiest and most effective way to uplift morale, be proof against turnover, and enhance output at the office is through encouraging fun in the workplace. Though most people draw back at the likelihood of achieving momentous goals and having fun simultaneously, it is a very viable blend.

Impediments to Productivity at Workplace productive workplace without discrimination is a key concern of a number of existing and proposed programs and policies, as well as the focus of substantial current research. An analysis of demographic, income and health care characteristics of working-age persons (aged 15 to 64) provides insights into the potential barriers faced at improving productivity at workplace. They also help to explain the role of employment in personal and household income, poverty status, and access to health insurance and amenities, as these factors are vital to the motivation of an employee at workplace (Hale, 1994).

Research Findings on Discrimination at Workplaces

In order to explore the segments of the working-age population that face the greatest difficulties in being productive at workplaces, these and other outcomes are examined separately by demographic grouping of persons with and without disabilities.

According to the Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP), only 29.5% of persons aged 20 to 64 years with severe disabilities participated in workplace activity - that is, they either had worked, had looked for work, or were on layoff from a job - during the month before the survey was administered. This proportion was far below that for persons in the same age group with no disabilities (84.5%) and for those with moderate disabilities (81.6%) (SIPP, 1995). This pattern of similar workplace activity rates between those with moderate and those with no disabilities, contrasted with sharply lower rates for those with severe disabilities, appears across many major demographic groups. The relative severity of the disability probably explains much of this difference, but other factors - notably, age and education - also may have some impact.

Persons with severe disabilities tend to be older, on average, than the other two groups, and, of course, older people are less likely to be productively active at workplaces than are younger ones. Among persons aged 20 to 64 with severe disabilities, almost one-third were 55 to 64 years old. This figure compares with only about 10% of persons with no disabilities and 20% of persons with moderate disabilities (SIPP, 1995).

The implication is that a significant proportion of those with severe disabilities are in an age group in which many people have already retired. Nonetheless, when the workplace productivity rate of persons with no disabilities is compared, age for age, with the rates of those with moderate and those with severe disabilities, it becomes clear that the last group consistently has lower rates than the other two groups.

The Effects of Discrimination on Workplace

The effects of discrimination on the work activity of individuals in a workplace are pervasive and, in a global sense, negative. This is particularly evident in labor force activity rates: persons with severe disabilities participated in the labor market at dramatically lower rates than did persons with no disabilities or with moderate disabilities. Moreover, persons with disabilities tend to be less educated and, therefore, to be restricted occupationally (Kruse, 1995).

Also, the likelihood of persons with severe disabilities working full time was considerably lower than that of persons with no disabilities. This reduced likelihood of working full time contributed to the fact that there exists discrimination with respect to the earnings. The earnings of those with severe disabilities were substantially lower than the earnings of individuals with no disabilities. In addition, persons with severe disabilities were consistently - and considerably - more likely than persons with no disabilities to be looking for work or to be on layoff. Even relatively high levels of educational attainment (which has a profound impact on most facets of labor market activity) do not change these relationships in any significant way (Kruse, 1995).

The Role of Leadership in Improving Productivity at Workplace

Whenever teams of people are called upon to assemble a "product" or achieve a goal by working together towards a "best of breed" solution, they tend to work in a customary style. This reduces inter-group competition and the measures of success - time, cost, aesthetics or functionality - cannot compare progress effectively. The process is usually chaotic as this takes its source from a customary style of leadership.

On the other hand, people tend to be continuously innovative when lead through vision, example, permissiveness, incentives or some adaptive combination of the four. This is exemplified of a preferred style of leadership under which the organization is visibly led in the notion that creativity is a core value.

Attributes Essential for Enhanced Productivity at Workplace

There are a number of traits or characteristics, such as good communication skills, supportiveness, analytical approach, contributive nature, adequate rewards, appreciation of good work and decisiveness etc. that are necessary to be present in the coworkers as well as the managers of a workplace. They can be explained well in the following points:

Norms for Quality Performance

Setting standards for subordinates helps them to know what is expected of them. Moreover, enough room and special incentives should be given to them in order to meet the set norms once put in action.

Incorporate Vision

One of the most powerful forces to have an effective outcome is to put forward, in cooperation with team members, an exciting vision/purpose of what the team is to achieve.

Encourage & Foster Communication good workplace always keeps an open-door policy, which will help keep communication flowing between the management and its subordinates.


Coordination improves communication and feedback among team members, which automatically improves the work environment, and controls the operational atmosphere.

Professional Disposition & Demeanor

An effective management portrays a professional demeanor and sets an example of proficiency in the workplace by treating peers and subordinates with courtesy and professionalism.

Self-Motivation and the Ability to Motivate Others

An effective management understands their subordinates and the factors that motivate them. The managers understand that not everyone shares their needs and goals and what motivates one individual may not motivate another.

The workgroups that are trained under effective managers tend to learn and develop, if not all, the key characteristics of the manager. When outstanding members from these groups groom into managers, they lead their respective teams on the same, yet improved pattern of management. Consequently, a sphere of influence is developed by an effective manager in the workplace that grows as he and his team members progress.

Ways to Improve Productivity at Workplace

Organizations setting sights on specifically the best realize that they must challenge their employees with work that is interesting, and keep them keyed up through creative means. The writing that follows offers exclusive suggestions to add flavor to a workplace - ahead of an organization's usual barbecue, once a year. It shows how an organization can:

Make professional relationships more personal

Establish team identity

Provide avenues for employees to express creativity

Evaluate its company culture

Celebrate successes on the departmental as well as company level

The Importance of Fun at Workplace

One does not have to learn how to have fun, since it is something that is engaged in unreservedly and instinctively as a child. However, one has to learn to give him self and others the permission to have fun. Always acting "grown-up" at work becomes comparable to having no fun. So in order to keep the employees satisfied and motivated and to keep the organization headed in the right direction, it is necessary to "Make Work Fun"

Usually, fun is kept at the bottom of the priority list of most employers. As a result it neither sees the daylight, nor even the fluorescent lights of the office premise. The notion of "Business first, fun last," makes work a tedious and unpleasant chore. Employers do not realize that if an employee does not enjoy his/her job and associates suffer from "terminal professionalism" that can never create a highly productive and successful environment. Taking one's job seriously and one's own self lightly is the basis of having fun at work.

Through fun at work, employees can make the 'ordinary' 'enjoyable'. It is the reward of employees' commitment and hard work for the organization. Fun reduces stress levels at difficult situations, making the task more doable, and effectively manageable. Fun provides the common ground that helps co-workers bond together and eradicates all professional biases and envies. Research indicates that when an individual is having fun, new neural cells are developed in areas of the brain that are devoted to learning…[continue]

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