Any great employer wants to create an environment that fosters two very important things. First, they want their employees to get along. It’s hard to get through a workday if people can’t be friendly with each other. Second, they want their employees to be productive. Productivity is the fuel that keeps the engine of the business going. Both of these things need to coexist for a work environment to reach its full potential. Does your office need a little more friendliness and productivity?
Create a Strong Company Culture
Everything that occurs within your workplace is a direct result of your company culture. If things are lax, loose, and disconnected as a result of an imperfect or absent culture, it’s hard for your employees to get to know each other. They may not feel motivated by an impending deadline and keep their workflow slow.
Productivity and friendliness need to keep a core place in your company culture. Your culture tells your employees what you expect for them and want from them. Putting forward advantageous values and modeling them from the top down will serve as constant inspiration and reinforcement for the environment you’re attempting to create.
Give Employees Enough Space
Both friendliness and productivity require clean, clear, and organized environments. People need room to sit together and work on projects. If you don’t have enough designated collaborative spaces, it’s time to make some. You might need to declutter or reorganize to properly set the stage.
Storage rooms can easily be turned into conference rooms by restructuring the space. If it’s time to throw some things away and donate things that still have life left in them, make it a priority to do so. If you still have some stuff you’d like to hang onto, you can use a community storage site like Spacer to find a safe local place to put it. Set up a table with some comfortable chairs and give people a place for teamwork.
Implement Excellent Team Bonding Strategies
The best time and place to encourage employee bonding is when people are having fun together. Team bonding strategies that involve “pass the ball” type games or trust falls aren’t anyone’s idea of fun. They feel forced and a little cheesy – everyone will be more worried about getting through those exercises that they will be about making the most of them.
Organize something cooler. It’s not that hard or expensive to plan a team hike, lake trip, or pizza party. You can even host casual game events for your employees. Cards are a great time, whether your employees are playing something as simple as Go Fish or something as stimulating as Magic the Gathering. People will be able to bond organically, and those bonds are stronger than the bonds that can be imposed in environments that feel forced.
Offer Them More Than a Salary
Money is great, but everyone has limits. You might be delighted to eat a whole cheesecake for $100,000. You might not want to eat a basket of dirty socks for the same amount of money. Employees are less happy and less productive when they feel as though they’re slogging through for nothing more than a paycheck. Offering them more than just money shows a greater level of appreciation.
Think of something that everyone has in common. A lot of employees want to be able to tend to their wellness. That’s why so many companies offer wellness programs for their employees. Your employees will know you care about them and understand their priorities. If you help them to become healthier, they’ll be the best possible versions of themselves. Not only will they be more productive, but they may also take less sick days. Happier, healthier people have stronger immune systems.
Assure That Workloads Are Evenly Distributed
A constant overflow of work is going to make your employees grumpier and less productive. It isn’t difficult to imagine why. If you constantly feel stressed out, it’s almost impossible to find the optimism and drive you to do your best. If you need to hire assistants or extra help to fill in some gaps, it may be worthwhile to do so. If that isn’t feasible, encourage people to start taking their vacation time. Reprioritize deadlines. Have leadership become more hands on. Make sure that everyone only is expected to do their fair share, and everyone will be happier.
Although it should go without saying, always ask your employees what you can do to improve their happiness and make it easier for them to do their jobs. Every workplace is different, and they may have some small niche requests that would make a world of difference.
About the author:
Rachel is a mother of 2 beautiful boys. She loves to hike and write about traveling, education, and business. She is a Senior Content Manager at Populationof an online resource with information about demographic statistics of world population.