Keeping your employees motivated and fostering a positive atmosphere in the office is key to a successful, thriving business. When morale is low, performance flounders and you’ll find it extremely difficult to get the best out of your employees. It’s easy to spot a workplace where morale is lagging- the atmosphere will be tense and quiet, laughter will be scarce and productivity will be down.
There are plenty of easy ways to boost morale in your business, and many of them won’t cost you a penny. When money is involved, consider it a sound investment in your business.
1. Acknowledge their accomplishments. Employees need to feel that their achievements are noticed and appreciated. Take the time to thank workers for individual successes, and reward them for these accomplishments through quarterly awards, announcements and bonuses.
2. Incorporate bonuses. If you’re not already offering a decent bonus during the holiday season then try to start doing so, particularly if the basic salary isn’t very high for certain employees. A little gratitude can go a long way where morale is concerned.
3. Offer discounts. If you own a retail business or any kind of business where your employees can purchase items for themselves, offer an employee discount. This will feed more money into your business while ensuring that your employees feel valued.
4. Find a loyalty program. If you can’t offer discounts related to your own company’s services, strike a deal with the local coffee shop offering a loyalty discount or specials for those with a company card.
5. Offer a book exchange. Ask employees to bring in business-related books or self help books and stock them in an office library. Employees can then borrow books and swap their own, which will give them the opportunity to develop their skill and boost their self esteem.
6. Include snacks. This may seem obvious, but free food can be a major boost to your office atmosphere. Offer up employee lunch breaks and bring sandwiches in from a local deli- they’re sure to offer you a special deal, and your employees will appreciate the effort (as well as the break from their usual packed lunch). Keeping your office kitchen stocked up will also keep your employees in the office for longer, and prevent long lunch breaks out.
7. Set up games. Companies like Google are well known for their fun, vibrant offices. They keep employees relaxed and feeling motivated by providing ping pong tables and other relaxing outlets to take part in during breaks. A quick game between employees can improve office relations and help re-charge your workers for the day ahead.
8. Organise team building activities. A day out playing paintball, getting to know one another or taking part in a volunteer project for charity will help your employees bond, and give them the opportunity to develop new skills.
9. Brighten the office. A positive atmosphere starts with the workspace. Paint the office in bright, lively colours that make you feel awake and alert, and keep the space cheerful and light with plants, flowers and artwork on the walls.
10. Deal with disputes. Many managers make the mistake of ignoring or avoiding workplace conflict and issues between employees. Encourage your staff to bring any problems they have to you, and ensure that they trust you to help resolve the issue in a fair and calm manner.
11. Ask for feedback. Give your staff the chance to express any concerns they may have with the management of the business through regular feedback forms.
12. Offer perks. Small perks included in the employment contract will improve your staff’s wellbeing and help them feel more motivated. Things like gym contracts, business phone contracts and opportunities for travel can be a major incentive.