Improving office culture and morale can have countless positive results: More productive employees, better quality work, increased business growth—the benefits are endless. Most workplaces already have some form of an office culture, but by improving morale, your office can be a more pleasant and exciting place to work. Just by making a few small changes, you can completely overhaul your work environment. Below are eight ways to improve morale and culture in the workplace that you can start implementing today:
Keep employees in the loop. Let them know what the company is working on; be honest about when things go well and especially when they don’t. Transparency and accessibility ensure that employees trust the direction that the company is going in. Establishing open lines of communication makes employees feel like part of a bigger picture and encourages them to contribute to the overall success of the business.
One easy way to improve communication is by encouraging the use of collaborative tools and software in the workplace. Applications like Slack, Skype, and Trello allow employees to quickly share important information to entire groups at the press of a button.
Incorporating flexibility into the company’s work schedules keeps employees happy and energized. Flexibility has also been shown to reduce turnover, which saves businesses time and money. Consider starting with a few small changes, such as offering employees the opportunity to work from home one day a week, and then work up from there. Many companies call this policy “Flex Fridays.” Other companies do the opposite, instead allowing employees to work from home as long as they go into the office one day per week. Consider which strategy might work best for your employees’ needs (or ask them!). Learn how to make the most effective flexible employee work schedules here.
Ask for Opinions
Ask employees for their comments and opinions regularly. Making employees feel heard is a great way to show them that they are a valuable part of the company. Use employee engagement surveys to gauge the success of new projects and initiatives (like the ones on this list!). Asking for people’s honest thoughts ensures that you are improving office culture in a way that best fits your individual workplace.
Collect and Internalize Feedback
It’s important to collect feedback from employees, but it’s even more important to internalize it. Implement smaller suggestions whenever possible. Instead of saving feedback for a yearly performance review, be open and honest with employees about your expectations and their work. Constructive feedback can promote honesty and openness in the workplace. Feedback can be a useful tool to fuel workplace productivity when utilized correctly.
Create Co-Worker Relationships
Get people more engaged in your office culture by fostering positive relationships between co-workers. Create open spaces where people can gather and socialize. Make lunch breaks an opportunity for socialization instead of a time to check phones. Getting employees off of screens and into conversations can prevent that dreaded late afternoon slump. Improve office morale by encouraging dialogue and watch your employees thrive!
Like flexibility, recognition has also been proven to reduce turnover. Acknowledging the effort that employees put into their projects is an easy way to boost morale. Get started by identifying which behaviors and results align with the company’s mission. Draw attention to and reward these behaviors as often as possible. Consider offering concrete rewards like food or prizes to further recognize employees for all of their hard work.
Incentives, like food and prizes, also reward employees for their work. However, unlike prizes, incentives can involve the entire office. Some companies provide group incentives to promote teamwork and cooperation, such as exercise classes. Other companies provide different incentives that match their own workplace culture. Consider what would best motivate the employees in your own office when choosing incentives to offer them.
The most important part of improving your office culture is to tackle each new change with a genuine goal of improving the workplace. Employees will respond better to changes that they can see are truly meant to better their experience at a company. Authenticity is crucial and takes effort; while these steps are simple, it will take time for the office to adjust. Improvements will happen more quickly and efficiently if there is real drive behind them.
After implementing any of these steps, be sure to check in as your employees adjust to the new changes. If something isn’t working, you may want to try a different approach; every office is different and so is every office culture. Also, be open to new strategies and ways of thinking about how to continue to improve office morale in the future.
Improving office morale is an easy way to boost productivity and bring the best out of your employees. Our eight strategies will completely change the way you and your office work:
- Communicate often
- Develop flexibility
- Ask for opinions
- Collect and internalize feedback
- Create co-worker relationships
- Recognize achievements
- Provide incentives
- Be genuine