Is your morning stroll into the office starting to feel more like a walk down death row? You know that your team is capable of rock star performance, but your department as a whole is suffering because your employees are just not happy.
There’s nothing worse than a bunch of unhappy rock stars. Tour busses get destroyed and platinum albums don’t get made. When employee morale is low, productivity is low, sales are low, and sick time and turnover are high.
How do you improve employee morale in your department and inspire rock star results? Read on to learn how.
Ways to Improve Employee Morale
There are a variety of techniques that you can implement today to create a better working environment for your team and increase your bottom line in the process. A happy employee is a productive employee.
Spruce up the office
Is your office dark, dingy, and outdated? This brings down the energy in an office and can make employees dread wasting their days. People thrive with natural light, soft colors, comfortable furniture, and plants (not to mention that some plants clean the air and improve the quality). Even if you don’t have a ton of money to spend, paint and some natural greenery can go a long way to improving the environment and making your employees happier and healthier.
Rethink the 9-5
Does your business require face-to-face contact with customers or could employees work non-traditional hours to better suit their lives and natural schedules? Employees that are able to take care of their families, go to doctors when necessary, and enjoy their lives —without taking comp time — are happier and more likely to stick around. If your industry doesn’t require specific hours, pass that freedom along to your employees. This could also include telecommuting a few days a week, and perhaps even restructuring their pay to do a job, not for the amount of hours they sit in a chair.
Allow employees to bring their pets to the office
Nothing improves morale in the office quite like having your fuzzy family members by your side. Pets have been proven to lower blood pressure, lessen stress, and build camaraderie among employees. They also encourage employees to take breaks and get some fresh air which can help improve energy and productivity. Not to mention, when an employee doesn’t have to rush home to feed their furry friend, they are more willing to stay later to finish a product.
Offer paid time off to volunteer in the community
Many employees, especially Millenials, have causes that they deeply care about and want to be involved with. When you offer your team the opportunity to get out in the community and support a charity they love, it has several benefits. These include improved:
Employees need to be recognized for reaching goals, providing excellent customer service, and otherwise furthering the company’s mission. Throw a party when team goals are reached, offer incentives and public acknowledgment when employees meet personal goals, and if a team member accomplishes an impressive feat in their personal lives, celebrate that too. Employees will feel appreciated and morale will soar.
Insurance and a retirement plan are important… and expected. If you’d like to make your employees happier and more productive, you need to think creatively. Do your employees sit at a desk for 40+ hours a week? Here are a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing:
Hire a motivational speaker
A motivational speaker can come in and pump up your employees. Marvelless Mark creates “rock bands” with your team, giving them the opportunity to write and perform their own music. This creates energy, encourages fun, and gets your employees excited to be a part of the company.
Communicate your “Why”
If your employees don’t know why they’re doing what they’re doing, they aren’t likely to be enthused about it. Make sure that your company story is well known to every single employee and make it clear what your larger mission is and how each employee’s work contributes to the company.
Offer opportunities for personal and professional development
When employees feel stuck, their morale and productivity take a dive. When they feel as if they are growing, improving, and have the opportunity for promotions and new challenges, they thrive. Here are a few ways to encourage growth:
Yes, an office should be a professional setting — but that doesn’t mean it can’t be fun. Adults need to play sometimes too. Provide crayons and coloring books in the break room, have an impromptu dance party to get employees up and moving, or take the afternoon off, every once in a while, to go bowling or catch a sporting event (as a team).
Ask for (and take) suggestions
Employees will be more emotionally invested when they’ve had a say in the decision making process. Whether it’s hiring new employees, making changes to existing protocol, or implementing new designs and products, your employees should be involved in the process. Ask for their input and whenever possible, take it! You never know what brilliance may be hiding among your employees, until you ask for assistance.
You know that your team is capable of rock star performance. Every day, you have the opportunity to boost morale in your department and encourage them to greatness.
“There’s so much opportunity in this world that sometimes it takes my breath away… It’s always there. It’s just a matter of taking the opportunity to use the opportunity.” John Mellencamp
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