Why Happy Employees Are Productive Employees

With tough economic times in recent years, many business owners and managers are trying to do more with less and make their offices more productive. People are looking for ways to streamline processes. Often, we have been able to help companies improve productivity and cut costs by helping them upgrade and improve their print, copy and document handling production processes. Improving processes is an important step in making your company more productive, but what about your employees, your greatest resource?

happy employeesDid you know happy employees are more productive and more motivated? In fact, according to a Forbes article, happy employees are 50% more productive. That is music to any manager’s ears!

A study by Towers Watson found that companies with high levels of employee engagement saw a 19.2% increase in operating income, while those with low levels of engagement experienced a 32.7% decline in operating income. One of the factors noted as most important to affecting job satisfaction was corporate culture.

Google is known for their fun work environment and their high level of employee satisfaction. While we have not gone to the lengths Google has by adding slides, bean bag conference rooms or hammocks to the Copeco offices, we do try to incorporate a spirit of employee appreciation into our corporate culture.

Each year we encourage our employees to dress up for Halloween. Sure it is something we all did as school children, but it seems even more fun as adults. It is hard to have an unhappy day when someone comes walking into your office or cubicle dressed as Pinocchio!

Copeco Employees Celebrate Halloween

During the summer months we hold our “Summer Spectacular.” It consists of multiple events to show appreciation to our employees and build camaraderie. During the Summer Spectacular we hold potlucks, breakfasts, a family picnic, casino night and a golf outing.

Denise Dennewitz Serving Breakfast at Copeco

We have also done other events throughout the year, such as partnering with our local hospital, Mercy Medical Center, to bring in a health fair. A healthy employee is a happy employee as well.

We hope these examples will inspire you to host some of your employee appreciation events. We are also here to help make your document handling processes more productive. If you are in the Canton, North Canton, Akron, Toledo areas, or elsewhere in Ohio, contact us.

What have you done at your business to show employee appreciation and make your office more productive?

Copying Success: How Sharp Helps Customers Again and Again

Success stories of Sharp copiers and printersPurchasing new copiers and printers for your business, school or church can rank up there with other costly capital expenditures. After all, you want to choose office equipment that will meet your changing needs for years to come.

When I have to make a big decision about a product or service, I usually start by reading reviews. I want to see not only how others have rated the product I’m considering, but also how they’ve successfully incorporated it into their life and workflow (or not).
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Achieving Goals: It’s All About the Steps You Take Every Day

Making New Year's Resolutions Last All YearI ran across an article today that says 35 percent of Americans break their New Year’s resolutions by the end of January. That’s unfortunate, but not surprising.

As a long-time salesperson and now VP of sales with Copeco, one of Northeast Ohio’s leading providers of Sharp copiers and printers, I believe the steps you take every day toward your goal are more important than the goal itself. Without a clearly defined plan of action, goals end up being a fog or a glittering generality. And, I’m sure, that’s a major reason why people give up on New Year’s resolutions so quickly.

When it’s time to plan goals for the New Year (or any time of the year), here’s the method I like to follow. Not only does it work when applied consistently, but it also can be adapted to fit every part of your life, including career, personal, family and more.

It’s not hard to do, but throughout the process, you must WRITE everything down. If you don’t, all your ideas are little more than – you guessed it – glittering generalities.

  1. Write down these six main categories: financial, career, education, spiritual, family and physical.
  2. Put the categories in order of most important to least important for you. Those last two words are critical because goal planning encompasses every aspect of your life and should be a very personalized process.
  3. Identify a goal for each category. Be specific and, yes, write it down.
  4. Carefully and strategically plan your steps to get to that goal, in writing.

For example, if you place your career at the top of your list and say your goal is to earn $100,000 per year, you have to decide if you’re willing to do what it takes to achieve that goal. And, you must place that goal within the context of your history. To make $100,000 a year, you might need to sell 1,000 widgets. But, in the past, you’ve normally sold only 500 widgets. Is your goal one of those glittering generalities?

Each goal you create must also include these important items:

  • Time frame. A goal without a time frame is a day dream.
  • Obstacles. What stands in your way? How do you overcome the obstacle?
  • People. Identify the people that can help you attain your goal. Also, determine whom you will share your goal with so that you will stay accountable.
  • Knowledge. Identify the knowledge you must have to attain your goal.
  • WIIFM. What’s in it for me? Why are you setting this goal?

Key Ingredient: the Plan of Action

Any plan of action for achieving a goal must be implemented on a daily basis. So, dissect your goal into microgoals that are manageable. What can you do each and every day that will move you a little bit closer to your goal? As with the goal itself, your plan of action must be specific.

Avoid getting behind or spending all your time putting out fires. If you do, you’ll get overwhelmed. Then the goal becomes an irritant.

So, write down your microgoals and stick to your daily plan. It’s all about the preparation!

How to Help Others with Goal Planning

If you’re a manager who’s responsible for helping others set goals, you must make sure the person you’re working with develops and takes ownership of their goals. You must be on the same page. If you give people a goal, it’s no longer their goal.

Plus, the result of achieving the goal should be fulfilling, as opposed to giving a negative consequence for failure. Build people up! I believe you’ll get a person to push harder if they feel supported. The process must be motivating, and, of course, everyone has different motivations. As a manager, you have to figure out what motivates each person who works for you.

In the end, you can’t sell yourself or anyone else on goals. Each of us must own our goals and implement a consistent plan of action for achieving them. Hopefully, this encourages you to establish and work toward your New Year’s resolutions differently – and more successfully – in 2012.