Positive staff morale is one of the most critical aspects of a successful business, yet many companies continually get it wrong.
It’s no wonder. Improving staff morale is difficult, and there’s no silver bullet that will instantly grant you a happy workforce.
Don’t worry; all hope is not lost.
Here are a number of easily implementable tricks and techniques you can use to boost staff morale right away:
Gain a deeper understanding
One of the worst errors a manager or business owner can make is to treat staff like commodities. When you’re continually presented with spreadsheets, it can be easy to forget that you’re dealing with human beings, not numbers.
It requires a mindset shift – and a more in-depth knowledge of human psychology – to get the best out of your employees and create a positive, productive atmosphere for everyone. Studying a business psychology degree, such as the TUW Masters in Organizational Psychology, will give you a rounded understanding of how best to manage your workforce – and yourself.
Have an open-door policy
Being available is one of the best ways to boost staff morale.
This is because you will be more connected to your staff, allowing them to voice their concerns or worries, advise you with possible strategy ideas, or feedback with findings from the shop floor. It also avoids an atmosphere of ‘them and us’ between management and the rest of the business, which can easily create toxicity.
Understand people’s jobs, but don’t monopolize
It’s well worth your while to understand your employees’ daily tasks and routines, even if they work in departments you have no expertise in.
In fact, you could go one step further by teaching yourself a working understanding of these different department roles, allowing you to make business decisions that suit everybody – or at least take everybody into account.
There’s nothing worse for an employee than to feel marginalized or misunderstood, especially if they have to pitch you their ideas. By understanding everyone’s jobs, your staff’s morale will be transformed.
This doesn’t mean you should become an overnight expert and start doing your employee’s jobs for them or override their suggestions at every turn because you think you know best. This will destroy staff morale and undo all your hard work.
Regularly shake things up
Once your business becomes set in a particular way of doing things, the atmosphere can quickly become stale. The same people will be working with each other in the same environments from day to day, leading to a rut of creativity and enthusiasm.
You can avoid this by shaking things up. Organize regular team-building events that take the workforce out of their usual environment, team completely disparate departments up with each other, and make sure management gets involved, too. This will bring everyone together on a level playing field, regardless of rank or role, and spark fresh ideas from everybody.
You could even take this idea and run with it, implementing a system that sees employees regularly change desks or offices or simply changing team members around to boost staff morale.
Set a clear path
If everyone knows what they are working towards, then your workforce will be happier.
There’s nothing worse than business strategies or harsh decisions being taken without justification for why they’re being done. Setting clear, easy to visualize targets will keep everybody – including you – pulling in the same direction. It will also reduce the need for you to constantly keep tabs on an individual’s progress.
As long as everyone knows the reason why they’re doing their jobs, staff morale will improve, and productivity will soar.