Employee morale is a powerful thread in any organization. When it is weakened, productivity and performance follow suit. It’s no surprise that culture change is becoming the premiere skill for organizations to master moving into the 21st Century.
Best Ways to Improve Employee Morale
Here are the best proactive measures you can take to keep employee morale healthy, in no particular order:
- CREATURE COMFORTS – Morale really starts with the basic work environment – is the office comfortable? If you are in a busier workplace, are there at least comfortable spaces employees can take a load off? Set out to make a thoughtful break space. Get some nice soft couches. If you offer foodstuffs, spring for the good coffee and a healthy variety of snack options.
- GIVEAWAYS/EVENT RAFFLES – Any experience is improved when you get a surprise gift along the way every now and again. Plus events and raffles are excellent opportunities to get your people doing something as a group. Shared experiences strengthen familial bonds, and give them something extra to look forward to in the workday.
- EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE – Study the “bad manager” clichés, and make a conscious effort to steer clear of them. Offer some sort of management training around communication and empathy skills if possible. The manager-employee relationship is a top driver of engagement, and it needs precise care.
- RECOGNITION – Formal recognition systems give everyone in the organization an easy way to build a culture of high morale on their own. By promoting strategic initiatives and encouraging its overall use, employees get a clearer picture of the desired culture change and can also act upon it at will.
- DIVERSITY – An MIT study revealed that people are happier and more cooperative in workplaces where diversity and inclusion are seen as a priority. Additionally, a wider variety of social perspectives and experiences can contribute much more to the collective knowledge of your group, with far-reaching effects.
- FLEX HOURS/REMOTE WORK – Our need to self-actualize is strong, and the more control we have over our work/life balance, the more satisfied we become. Offering some form of flexible scheduling or remote work is crucial to morale as employees become more and more woke to the fact that many jobs in today’s age can be done from anywhere.
Be Like Ike
President Dwight D. Eisenhower said it best – “The best morale exists when you never hear the word mentioned. When you hear a lot of talk about it, it’s usually lousy.” If your morale is running low, don’t just talk about it – take action, shake things up, and show them the change you want to see.