As a small business owner, you’re always looking for clever ways to boost employee engagement and morale. Most of us know the importance of ensuring that our team feels valued and respected. We often think that rewarding an employee with the occasional Starbucks gift card shown as a token of appreciation will suffice. In reality, there is more to it, we need to take a deep dive into the overall look and feel of the workplace.
A Clean, Modern Work Environment
The appearance of your company is key. Take a look at your office, do you have a clean, modern work environment for your employees? We all know the saying, “look good, feel good”, right? The same applies to your work environment. Even if your operation is not customer/client facing, it’s important to make sure your employees feel proud walking into their space. Approach the office as an outsider, does it look inviting? Is the furniture outdated or mismatched? Are there copy paper boxes in the corner? Do you have stacks of paper on your desk or files laying around? Breakroom appearance, décor, flooring, and wall paint can go a long way!
Everyone wants it, but how do you provide it? The best way to find out is to ask your employees! Let them help you support flexibility in the workplace. In 1926, a five-day, 40-hour workweek was instituted by CEO Henry Ford. Ford argued that his employees were more productive in fewer hours; critics were skeptical they could be productive enough to make up the difference. (Washington Post, 2021). Well, it’s 2022, and we’ve evolved! Most have identified that productivity still is achieved by giving employees autonomy over their own work schedule. It doesn’t have to be drastic; it can be as simple as adjusting start and end times, providing a hybrid work schedule or additional PTO.
As we enter a new era in the workforce, we encounter new technology, strategies and ideas. Embrace it! Don’t get stuck in an, “it’s always been done this way” mentality. Be open to new ideas and suggestions from your employees and include them in decisions making. Allow them the opportunity to do the research and find the solution to issues that arise. Let them problem-solve and help develop ways to increase productivity. Create an environment where they are comfortable and encouraged to participate and contribute to the business they belong to. Remember that in order to enrich the future of your organization be receptive and utilize the benefits of the talented people on your team.
Too often, we get tunnel vision and caught up in the day-to-day. Don’t forget that with just a few adjustments or some simple conversations you can improve employee engagement and morale!
Brockell, G. (2021, September 6). That time America almost had a 30-hour workweek. Washington Post. https://www.washingtonpost.com/history/2021/09/06/40-hour-work-week-fdr/