Managing any team will be challenging, as there’s more to it than hiring people and scheduling shifts. You also have to keep them working. You’ll see dramatic increases in productivity if you can improve morale and workforce engagement. For example, improved workplace satisfaction will reduce turnover and the number of sick days your team takes. The question for most managers is how they can achieve this. Here are 5 ways in which managers can help improve workplace satisfaction.
Employees appreciate having greater autonomy, responsibility and control over what they do. At a minimum, you’ll need to stop micromanaging them. You could eliminate red tape and bureaucracy so that people don’t have to jump through hoops to get things done. Finding ways to streamline your processes will make them more efficient, too.
If possible, allow them to work from home or on a flexible schedule. You might see gains simply by shifting their work schedule so they can avoid rush hour.
Invest in Their Health and Safety
Many companies say they care about their employees. If you invest in the health and safety of your team, you’re proving that you do. For example, you could have casual safety meetings. These are often referred to as toolbox talks or safety time-outs. In these meetings, teams that deal with safety hazards address any and all health and safety issues. Crew members might discuss how to use power tools safety, or a warehouse manager may discuss proper lifting techniques. These can be short presentations on coping with stress, recognizing repetitive stress injuries or providing first aid.
These meetings should be in addition to mandatory safety training and periodic safety meetings. The talks should cover topics of importance to your crew. The goal is for each talk to be five to fifteen minutes. Let team members propose topics, and let those who have the interest and expertise lead them.
Recognize and Reward People
Employees want to know that they are valued. One way to do this is to give them recognition. Note that this doesn’t have to be a bonus in their paycheck; it could be as simple as an announcement on the intercom or the company newsletter.
Make sure to praise them in team meetings when warranted and implement recognition systems that automatically seek out people for recognition and give them a perk. For example, give the employee of the month the best parking spot, or give them ad-hoc gifts like vouchers or an extra day of paid vacation. Reward them for meeting stretch goals, so that everyone has a goal they can strive for and realistically meet.
Open up channels of communication. Give disgruntled employees an avenue for venting their frustrations aside from talking to the department gossip. Provide them a way to make their complaints and address their problems, especially if the problem is their boss or team lead. Encourage collaboration on teams so that everyone feels heard and respected.
Open communications should be two ways. Send out company newsletters that let people know what is going on, whether it is good news or bad news. Hold meetings so that people can ask questions and have their concerns addressed.
Provide Employee Training and Development
In many workplaces, there is a minimum level of training required for people to legally be allowed to do their jobs. For example, someone must attend construction site safety training sessions before they can walk onto the worksite. However, you should provide more training opportunities. Let them learn new skills, so they’re qualified for a wider range of assignments. You should also consider offering mentoring or coaching. This will facilitate knowledge sharing within the organization as well as engagement.
If you can improve workplace satisfaction, you won’t just see increased morale; your company will see a number of benefits that have a direct impact on the bottom line.
Founder Dinis Guarda
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