Do Your Employees Procrastinate? Learn How to Overcome Procrastination at Work

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Do Your Employees Procrastinate? Learn How to Overcome Procrastination at Work

Industry | Nov 25, 2022

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Business owners have a lot on their plate. They are in meetings all day to keep track of budgeting, marketing efforts, employee satisfaction rates, and much more. When they aren’t in meetings, they’re inevitably performing another work-related task, and free time is often unheard of unless a rare vacation opportunity presents itself. We hear you, business owners. You’re busy! So naturally, the last thing you want to worry about is employees procrastinating at the workplace. If your employees aren’t performing as they should, this guide is for you. Let’s learn how to prevent workplace procrastination!

Is Workplace Procrastination Really a Big Deal?

Busy business owners may be tempted to overlook procrastination at the workplace. After all, it’s just one more thing to worry about. However, we encourage you not to shrug this behavior off as “no big deal.” A YouGov Survey discovered that people, on average, spend 218 minutes procrastinating every day. When you calculate the total time spent procrastinating each year based on these numbers, you get 55 days’ worth of lost productivity! Business owners, can you really afford 55 days of lost productivity?

Why Does Workplace Procrastination Happen?

Procrastination may seem like pure laziness. However, the causes behind procrastination are often more complex. For instance, many workers procrastinate because of anxiety or a fear of failure. Feeling overwhelmed is another major cause of procrastination. Now, that’s not to say you should excuse employees for putting off their tasks unnecessarily. But you should keep in mind that oftentimes there is a root cause behind this bad habit.

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How to Prevent Workplace Procrastination

When your workers are consistently shirking their duties, it can feel impossible to get them on track again. Thankfully, that’s not true. Here are four actionable ways to help your employees stop procrastinating:

1. Set Goals For Your Employees

Vague instructions and nonexistent deadlines are two major causes of workplace procrastination. People are more likely to get things done when you set clear, time-limited goals. For instance, you might tell your marketing team you want 60 social media posts by a specific date. Or you could tell your financial team that they need to have a budget complete by the end of the week.

2. Encourage Your Employees to Break Down Tasks

Oftentimes, workers freeze because a task seems huge and daunting, so they keep putting it off. Tell your workers to break down big tasks into smaller pieces that are easier to manage. For instance, say you ask your marketing team for a draft of a white paper that is 10,000 words. They have two weeks to complete it. Encourage them to get 1,000 words done every day, then use the last four days to proofread and edit. That will make the task seem more manageable.

3. Assign Workplace Buddies

It’s easy for employees to put off work when no one is checking in on them. That’s why it can be helpful to assign workplace buddies to keep everyone accountable. Encourage workers to check in on one another, offer motivation, and make sure their teammates’ projects get completed.

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4. Create an Employee Advocacy Program

Workers are more likely to contribute when they love their job and are encouraged to be passionate about what they do. So, consider starting an employee advocacy program that turns your workers into in-house influencers. Give them free swag with your brand’s name, hold contests to see who can get the most traction on social media for a branded post, etc.

Interested? Check out our post on how to start an employee advocacy program here.

Consult Our Team on Workplace Procrastination Today!

Don’t let workplace procrastination drain your resources and slow down productivity. Our team can help prevent the effects of workplace procrastination among your employees. Contact USA Link System for the best industry resources!

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