Main navigation

I am quietly musing to myself – laughing on the inside really. I sat down to start this blog on 3 June… more than a month ago – and it’s all about productivity. There is no doubt that I needed to attend the lunch to launch the Ernst & Young Productivity Pulse Survey.

Of course I listened with big ears, the challenge, of course, is what did I take out of the presentation – and how will it make a difference to my business [I write as I check my phone for messages and respond to a colleague on a query] – focus could be a big key to productivity.

The survey discovered that:

  • A third of Australian workers waste almost a quarter of their time at work.
  • Employees reportedly spend most of their ‘wasted’ time reading and responding to emails, dealing with technology issues and waiting for approval from management.
  • Wasted time costs businesses a collective $41 billion in lost wages and productivity costs each year.
  • The survey suggested that only 58% of work conducted adds real value to the business.
  • 54% of workers say people management issues has the biggest impact on lost productive time.

The best way to improve people ‘productivity’ is simply to ask them to work harder… apparently. However, I would argue that people need to know what they are working on… If employees know what is expected of them and they are noticed there can be a massive shift in productivity.

‘I know what I’m there to do, somebody noticed and I go home feeling like a winner.’

The eight tips on productivity from Sean Pyper GM from Commonwealth Bank of Australia during the lunch were:

  1. Specify the value in the eyes of the customer – focus on what is important to customers rather than what you ‘think’ is important to customers.
  2. Create flow in processes – no double handling or back-tracking.
  3. Eliminate waste…
  4. Reduce variations – that is consistency saves wasted energy.
  5. Do it correctly the first time – look for the cause rather than the symptoms.
  6. Make performance visible – (eg. scoreboards in public places).
  7. Actively manage all processes – reviewing and improving.
  8. Coach people for excellence in performance.

As I read through this list I think to myself all of the above will take a commitment from leaders and employees. And to achieve such flow in the process takes leadership, commitment and ongoing execution.

So the question I pose is ‘Do people in your organisation know what they are there to do, what success looks like and are individual & team contributions recognised and celebrated?’ Perhaps that is the first place to start on reducing the 25% lost time being wasted in one in every three Australian businesses.

As quoted from the E&Y report:

Twenty-three percent of the Australian workforce who are highly productive have much in common. These are people whose skills are well aligned to their jobs, work in a supportive culture and are valued for their contribution. Money is not their main motivating factor. They rate satisfaction with the work they do and work/life balance as more important than salary or bonuses.

I couldn’t agree with them more.

Reader Interactions

Leave a comment
*All fields are required

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

join the conversation
@ the huddle
Click to discover how I can help you progress to the next level through my Facebook Community The Huddle.


  • Reflecting on this weeks planning session... people of different backgrounds, different ages, nationalities all united by a shared senses of #purpose to do something meaningful and valuable for others. #leadership #quote
  • Each year I look at what it is I want to achieve. And how I want to contribute. I also build new messages and insights for my keynotes. One topic I’m considering is Influence... how to impact others. This will incorporate personal leadership, but it is far more shifting viewpoints and aligning people.  This is what I’m working on at the moment.  What are you planning for 2018?
  • Looking good team! #BRG #kickoff
  • Oh it’s all about #BRG and 2018 for the next few days ❤️ Love to plan 💙Love to dream @redballoon @getredii @davidchristopheranderson @wrappedbyredballoon
  • Loveit @redballoon and this is what we do for our day job!


download the book

To learn more, enter your email for a FREE copy of Ready To Soar, Chapter One.

close x
  • enter your first name
  • enter your email