Office morale can directly impact job satisfaction ratings as well as productivity and even talent retention. Unfortunately, some managers and business owners only think about the importance of morale when it sinks to a very low level. The ideal work environment will foster high morale on a regular basis, and this will feed high employee satisfaction ratings and motivate your team to be as productive as possible on a regular basis. These points will help you to maintain high morale in your workplace year-round.
Let Them Know What to Expect
Employees need to have goals to work toward. These goals should be challenging enough that they feel as though they need to strive to meet them, but they should not be unattainable. Your team needs to understand what your goals are and how they were selected. It is imperative that you clearly define the company’s goals and that all of your actions and words are in line with the goals.
When creating and managing workloads for your team, ensure that the workload is as evenly spread out as possible. Avoid excessively overworking your team, but ensure that everyone has something productive to work on throughout the day.
Get to Know Your Workers
Your employees may feel more motivated about working hard for you on a daily basis when they feel as though you care about them. You need to actively work toward creating a strong and personal connection with each employee. While you definitely want to be aware of their names, their children’s names, their birthdays and other important details, avoid getting excessively personal with them.
You should always greet each employee by name when passing them in the office or meeting up with them in a conference room. Act happy to see each person, and ask or say something personal or relevant to make them feel valued. Send a card or gift for birthdays, the birth of a child and other special events. These small gestures are incredibly meaningful and can result in much higher morale throughout your office on a regular basis.
Help Them Grow
Morale can also be boosted through personal development and professional advancement. Identify what each of your employee’s career goals is, and actively work toward helping them achieve those goals. Offer them educational opportunities for development, such as massive open online courses, technology-based training, foreign language classes, seminars and more. There are many cost-effective and convenient educational platforms that you can explore in a wide range of industries and professional settings.
In addition, focus on promoting from within when possible. After all, employees need to feel as though their new skills and education are being put to full use.
Give Feedback and Acknowledgement
Your employees need to receive feedback from you on a regular basis. When they do a great job, let them know in different ways. For example, have an employee of the month program, or offer a free lunch to an employee who has worked exceptionally hard recently. These gestures of praise and reward can boost morale significantly. You may also consider promoting employees from within as a more significant sign of positive feedback.
Negative feedback should only be provided in the form of constructive criticism. Avoid offering this type of feedback publicly, and ensure that any criticism is fair and honest.
Be Supportive and Flexible
Employees should never feel stressed about trying to manage personal obligations and work obligations. Ideally, you will give them the flexibility they need to tackle all of their responsibilities effectively. To accomplish this goal, you may consider allowing your team the opportunity to telecommute from home periodically. This has been shown to reduce stress levels and increase productivity.
You should also allow and even encourage your workers to take personal days as needed. Focus on generating results rather than ensuring that your team members are confined to a desk for a certain number of hours each day. Performance should not be measured by attendance alone if you want to have high morale in your office. In addition, never make an employee feel guilty for taking time off for personal needs.
Promote Team Spirit
Another excellent driver of morale in a work environment is team spirit. In the most positive work environments, individuals work well together and are therefore more efficient and productive in their positions. Many individuals are motivated to work hard when they feel as though they may let their team down if they do not.
You should focus on building a team environment away from the office as well. Team building activities, casual lunches and more are wonderful opportunities for your team to get to know each other on a more personal level and to learn to respect each other’s differences.
Don’t Forget to Have Fun
You understandably want to boost morale in your workplace so that productivity and efficiency skyrocket. However, in order to encourage your team to work as hard as possible, you need to allow and even encourage some fun in the office and outside of office hours.
For example, set up a regular casual Friday, and plan team building weekends once per quarter. Host a holiday office party or a summer barbecue, and consider having an office movie night at a local theater. These events will help your team to learn more about each person on an individual level and may foster respect and camaraderie.
When morale is high in your office on a consistent basis throughout the year, you may notice that productivity and efficiency are maintained at high levels. You can see, therefore, that promoting a high morale in your office on a regular basis is a critical step to promote the overall success of your business. If you have not been consistently focused on morale-building activities and efforts, now is a great time to adjust this behaviour. By doing so, you may notice that morale skyrockets and that your team is happy to work as hard as possible for you throughout the year.
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