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51% of business leaders worried about productivity.

Posted on 27th October 2021

With footfall in the city of London now at 39% of pre-pandemic levels, the highest since early 2020, a new study shows post-pandemic hybrid working models are leaving business leaders worried. 51% of UK business decision-makers said they were worried about workplace productivity, and a massive 74% showed at least some concern, in a new survey by consultancy Agility in Mind.

The survey published in their playbook “How to Grow”, showed that 3 in 5 business leaders expect it to be harder to engage employees’ hearts and minds, and 29% don’t know how to determine new initiatives to tackle that, with 27% saying they simply don’t have the time.

Agility in Mind CEO Andrew Jones said: “Businesses have faced unprecedented challenges throughout each stage of the pandemic, culminating in an inability to plan and a cautiousness in how they plan for the future. Productivity concerns are unsurprising given the uncertainty that has plagued the business community.”

However, the research did find that leaders at least want to find solutions; 85% of senior decision-makers want to explore new ways to improve employee motivation, engagement and productivity, even if some are unsure how to do it.

And 45% see this as either critical to future success or at least a key business priority. On;y 7% see now value in these initiatives.

The playbook also examined business leaders’ proposed solutions to productivity concerns. 40% said their people were key to their businesses’ post-pandemic success. 38% thought new ideas were the solution, 35% cited access to capital, and just 34% said it was leadership. In other words, business leaders are tending to see their people’s contribution as more important than their own.

“It is refreshing that so many senior decision makers are motivated to respond to issues of engagement, motivation, and productivity, and that so many see people as a key factor in organisational success,” said Jones. “Senior leaders must learn and respond to their workforce... We don’t need to control people to force them to be productive, we need to create interesting work where they feel fulfilled and motivated to thrive.”