Boredom and lack of involvement taxes productivity at work, Study suggests – Part 2

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012 6:10:31 by

One of the less discussed factor in low productivity is the employees’ lack of involvement in decision making and the mechanical routine at work. The routine tasks are effective ways to increase productivity of employees as they inherit a less probability of errors. However, at the same time they become boring over a certain period of time.

In the past, employees had opportunities in the market to switch jobs but now that the unemployment rates are skyrocketing and lay-offs have become synonymous to cost-efficiency, employees have no or small window of opportunity in the market. Therefore, they are stuck to what they are doing currently, ultimately losing their interest in the work.

The West has addressed the issue and recent surveys and studies have revealed that the most unheard factor is actually the most intimidating to organizational productivity, boredom.

According to Richard Chaifetz, a neuropsychologist and the CEO of ComPsych, a provider of employee assistance programs, “When people get bored they become disengaged, the costs can be extreme—lack of productivity, significant errors and catastrophic accidents.”

“When we talk about ‘doing more with less,’ you have to consider what kind of work is piling up on people’s desks,” he further added.

The main reason behind the disengagement with work is the repetition of the same tasks over and over. One of the factors is the increased work that used to be divided in two or more employees, now falling in the lap of a single worker.

Angelo Kinicki, a management professor at Arizona State University’s W. P. Carey School of Business said, “It’s repetitiveness that’s the culprit.”

As mentioned above, employees do not have a choice in selecting a job any more. They are stuck with something forced by the economic pressure. Even more so, the rapidly changing business trends and exponentially evolving technology makes certain skills of certain employees obsolete.

Mark Royal, senior principal at global management consultancy Hay Group and author of The Enemy of Engagement said, “The role is not allowing him to do what he can do best. So he feels frustrated, and the company is losing out.”

To kill the boredom from workplaces companies should encourage managers to talk to the employees every once and a while. This motivates them in inputting their insight in the work they do. Moreover, it brings a change in the mechanical routine of ‘Go to work, work, and go home.’

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