When employees are loyal and engaged, productivity increases and the business benefits. However when employees are unhappy in the workplace it is found that absenteeism begins to increase and can cause bosses a HR headache. I have outlined a number of ways that can help keep employees happy and hopefully motivated, providing a more harmonious workplace beneficial to both the employee and of course you the employer.
1. Gratitude is key; it’s the most cost-effective morale boost any employer can give. Remember to consider employees who may not be on your radar, they will especially appreciate you spending time to talk and expressing gratitude for the work they undertake. It’s a sure morale booster.
2. Ask employees about their job, take a keen interest in what they do, what they enjoy about the role. Also listen to any concerns and what could be done different. Taking onboard their views will allow you to take action, even small changes can make a difference which will be welcomed and once again is a sure way to boost morale. It also shows that you listen to your employees, you respect their views and the fact you’re always willing to make changes should they be required.
3. Consider giving your employees the day off on their birthday. It is understandable that not all employers are in a position to offer this especially if your business relies on manpower; however it can be a welcome incentive especially if the employee achieves set targets or KPIs (key performance indicators).
4. Another way to help ensure employees feel valued is by communicating to your workforce the work they have undertaken, it’s a great way to offer praise. However take care not to isolate members of your workforce, ensure the rest of your employees are also congratulated when deserved. However such an incentive can increase morale and will help to ensure the individual concerned continues to perform admirably, ensuring consistency throughout.
5. Talk about the business to employees; keep them informed of company developments. Employees appreciate honesty and transparency, they also like to express their views and will often suggest ideas to help the business. Again, listen to what they have to say but remember transparency is key.
6. Keep employees working. While this may sound clearly obvious employees dislike being bored, they would prefer to be kept busy. Keep their job varied, provide them with tasks that are challenging yet can offer a real difference to your business. Monitor stress levels to ensure they are within tolerable limits. Also if applicable, invest in training, this is a sure way to motivate employees when investment is made to expand their key skills. However remember to introduce a HR clause that enables you to recover the costs of training should an individual leave your employment within a short timescale of training.
7. Try not to micromanage your employees, allow them the opportunity to be able to perform the job and make decisions themselves; empowerment can make a difference. Provide praise when deserved and advice when needed. Again it is all about ensuring that the employee feels valued and satisfied.
8. Consistency. Make sure that you business is a fair workplace. All benefits should be equal, work demands fair and rules in place applied to all employees. Whatever expectations you set as an employer ensure they are consistent with all employees.
David Price is managing director of Health Assured.