No matter how great your job is, it can get routine and stale at times. You can talk to someone with the most exciting occupation and they will say that sometimes there are arduous days. But, as a human resource manager, you are responsible for keeping the workplace an emotionally healthy and exciting place for the employees. The better the work environment, the more productive the workers can be.
The key is to establish relationships in the workplace. This is the best way to increase productivity.
But how can you turn your office or other work areas into a place of care, warmth, and fun so that these relationships can blossom? Here are a few friendly suggestions.
1. Surprise Employees with a Break
There is such a stigma attached to taking a break. We think that if someone is on the break that they must be lazy or not a hard worker. That is simply not the case. Breaks are a great commodity in the workplace. Encourage small breaks throughout the day to stretch, grab a snack, or simply unwind. You will be amazed at how productivity increases.
2. Start a Wellness Program
This will show the employees that their workplace cares for their health. Sometimes after sitting for long periods of time, simply stretching your legs just won’t do. Having an area to exercise after hours, or partnering with a local gym, is a great way to display that you are not only concerned with their work, but also their health.
3. Communicate Clearly
Where there are many bosses, often there are many contradictory duties. It creates a better work atmosphere when you organize the goals and communicate them in a clear manner. Take classes or courses online to improve your communication skills. Oprah Winfrey is a great example of communication skills.
4. Allow Personal Decorations
Nobody wants to get up early and go to a drab gray space. They may even start dreading it after a while. Encourage your employees to decorate their office with pictures, artwork, hobby items, or anything else that will make working in their personal space more enjoyable.
5. Know your Employees
If the employees know that their manager is familiar with their hobbies, interests, and family, they will work harder for them. Establishing a personal connection is a necessity. This shows you do not think that you are above them. When they see they have a caring manager, they will work harder.
6. Develop your Employees
You can guide their progress with care by coaching them at their workplace. Workshops and other courses are effective in establishing clarity and incentive. There is always something new to learn on the job. These programs encourage constant growth and knowledge, which leads to a higher production rate.
7. Model Honesty
If you want your employees to display integrity in the workplace, it is essential that you display them yourself. Everyone wants to work for someone who is honest and upstanding. If you break the rules, they will too.
8. Request Feedback
Your employees are always being analyzed in some way. Sometimes, they can feel like they are the only ones under the microscope. Show them you too can improve by asking for feedback. This shows that you have humility and are always seeking to improve in your duties.
9. Ensure they have the Proper Resources
There are key resources for every job. Make sure that your employees never run out of these, so as not to interrupt their efficiency.
10. Recognize Individual Accomplishments
Your employees need to know that their work matters to you on a personal level. A simple nod at the coffee machine or water cooler will not do. You need to see their individual accomplishments and thank them for their work. Other than a monetary reward, personal recognition is one of the greatest incentives in the workplace. Make “thank you” a part of your daily vocabulary.
11. Be Flexible with Hours
Yes, it seems counterproductive. You may think if the employees spend long hours on the job, productivity increases. That is not true. Long hours can cause employees to make costly mistakes which can slow productivity. If you are flexible with the work hours, balancing them out fairly, your employees will perform better.
12. Organize Fun Events to Stimulate the Workplace
Going to work should be fun at times. If you organize events to create some liveliness in the environment, people will want to come to work more and this will result in making your company more creative and successful. There are some very exciting ideas to look into.
13. Encourage Office Friendships
Some employees have family nearby. Some, however, do not. They may have relocated and have not fit in yet. They also may be older and their families have moved away. Regardless of the causes, people will show up for work more if they know they have friends. After work, celebrate the end of a long day by inviting them to a restaurant, bar or coffee shop.
14. Remember Family and Personal Time
When you see numbers, statistics, pie charts and surveys all day, it may be tempting to think of your employees as numbers too. They are not. They have families, friends, and hobbies that you need to take into consideration. Provide ample time for them to have a life outside of the workplace. You will see their productivity numbers go up.
15. Do not make Sick Days Intimidating
Everyone gets sick. We do not want germs to spread in the work area. We don’t desire anyone to work with pain either. But so often, we make requesting a sick day or a doctor’s visit an intimidating ordeal. There are some instances in which employees are so intimidated that they will not ask. Fake illnesses and injuries exist, but they are not common. Give your employees the benefit of the doubt unless you see tell-tale patterns.
Conclusion: Employees are People
All of these suggestions are not simply tips for greater productivity. They are reminders that employees are not mindless machines. You cannot just tell them what to do, tell them their reward is a paycheck and expect them to work harder for you.
You have to keep in mind that you are leading friends, neighbors and work associates. It starts with you. You set the pattern to establish great relationships in the workplace. Once the relationships are formed, greater productivity is the natural result.