Office morale is one of the biggest factors that directly affect productivity in your office, as well as employee retention. I’ve come up with five different ways that employers can build morale in the office and create a better sense of ownership in the company.
Be innovative. People love working for companies that are innovative and use technologies and ideas unmatched by their competitors. In the war for talent, keeping good employees entertained and happy is directly related to their personal growth within the company. If you’re fostering an environment of innovation and encouraging new ideas and growth, employees will be more loyal to the company because they want to be on the front line of new technologies.
Be fun. Your employees just want to have fun! Foster an environment like those big tech companies that let their employees have fun but still have a strong work ethic. Encourage an attitude of “Work Hard, Play Harder” in your organization, and you’ll see employee morale skyrocket. Take a page from Google, which is known for its perks including ping-pong tables, a video game room, and even a rock-climbing wall. Not all companies can be as cool as Google, but if you take small steps towards creating this kind of ambiance, it will certainly pay off.
Be different. When’s the last time you heard of a company letting their employees having more of a say in how things are run? Employees become engaged in a company when they feel that their opinions matter. No longer does just having an open door policy suffice as a means of communicating problems and ideas. You need to be proactive in your approach to engaging your employees. When problems arise in the workplace, get direct feedback from your employees. They will feel that they’re a real part of the team, morale will be boosted, and you’ll gain lifetime employees.
Be an advocate. Let’s face it, “the customer is always right” couldn’t be further from the truth in today’s world. When issues arise, don’t automatically assume that the customer deserves everything and your employees deserve nothing. Be an advocate for your employees and make sure you’re listening to both sides of the story before making a judgment call. Don’t lose a great employee over a customer who believes he’s entitled to everything. A good employee is usually an even better customer.
Be rewarding. Reward your employees for a job well done. Keep your employees engaged by offering rewards and credit for going above and beyond. This will act as a constant morale booster. It’s worth it to throw company parties for holidays or annual retreats if you can afford them. Think of them as an investment in your staff that lets them know that you care and will reward a job well done.
Building morale in the workplace can be done in simple ways, like the occasional bagel breakfast that doesn’t cost the company an arm and a leg. You can keep things simple, but let your employees know that you see their work and value their input. The more you appreciate your employees, the more productivity you will ultimately receive. Profits will rise—I guarantee it.
The idea of advocating your employees isn’t new. The problem is that even the employer who values real professionals would rarely take a chance of taking away their reputation in the eyes of their clients.
There’s nothing in the whole world that can build up the office morale more than a good financial reward either as a pay raise or bonus. However I wouldn’t undermine non-monetary benefits – sometimes they may mean even more!
I think that the best way to keep your employees happy is to show them that they are valued, their opinion counts and they make an important cog-wheel of the whole company mechanism.
Jack, I support your idea that the feeling of significance may motivate employees better than anything else. The realization that they do something meaningful may help to achieve the efficiency and to strengthen office morale.
Have you forgotten about good old team building? What about such wacky activities where you can shoot your boss in laser tag venue? Nothing brings more pleasure J