The Challenge: Maintaining employee morale when running a business
The Science: Study proves that companies who focus on maintaining their employees morale doubles up in productivity, profitability and saves money in the long run.
The Solution: If you’re looking for simple ways to keep employees happy and feeling good, read on for some great tips and advice. Below therefore are 7 simple tweaks to boost your employees’ morale:
1. Make Praise Part of Your Routine
Offering in-person encouragement is a small thing, but it has a huge payoff. Oftentimes, employees only expect to be called out when they make a mistake. Instead, try making it a daily practice to catch employees doing things right. In a study, employees said that frequent recognition of accomplishments was the best non-monetary award they could receive.
You only need to offer a few words of praise to create a huge morale boost for hardworking employees. A simple, heartfelt “thank you” can go a long way towards making employees feel appreciated. Meanwhile it benefits your business!
2. Communication Is Key
Before you start instituting a slew of incentive programs, ask yourself: are you communicating enough with your employees?
Setting out time to talk with your employees is the most basic and most effective way to keep them happy. A recent article from Accountemps found that 48% of senior business executives said that improving communication with their employees was the most effective way to improve morale.
Designate specific moments where your employees can walk into your office to talk, or set up weekly meetings to facilitate discussions. Remember, communication is a two-way street, so while you keep your employees updated with news, be sure to listen to their suggestions and comments.
3. Publicly Acknowledge Excellent Work
Apparently, employees like public recognition for their good works, so create a space to showcase your employees’ best work.
You can create a physical bulletin board complete with gold stars where you can post acknowledgements of excellent work. Place it in a high-traffic area (like near the kitchen or breakroom) to maximize recognition and incentivize lower-performing employees.
If you prefer taking the digital route, you can make a blog where you can highlight employees who are going above and beyond. If your company has a newsletter, that’s another great place to highlight employees’ work. You can even make it a note from the CEO or president rather than just from their manager – to really boost their morale.
4. Offer Small, Non-Monetary Perks
If you want to reward an outstanding employee with something tangible but don’t have the budget for a monetary reward, consider granting them some other office perks. If you work in a formal office environment, you could allow top employees to enjoy Casual Fridays. You can grant extra vacation days if it’s within your power, or you can allow the employee to work from home on certain days.
Provide top performers with flexible hours to accommodate family or travel needs. If other employees realize that they will be tangibly rewarded for every brilliant works, it can help motivate them to up their own performance.
5. Follow the 50/30/20 Rule
A study found that employees respond best to recognition when 20% comes from the business, 30% comes from their peers, and 50% comes from management. Since management has direct influence on promotions and compensations, employees value their praise the most. Praise from peers can feel hollow if it makes up over 30% of recognition, so make sure your management team and the company as a whole works to praise great work.
6. Give a Plaque
Many companies hold recognition ceremonies once a year to reward their employees for all their hard work. Often, these are luncheons with speeches and awards. Companies may choose to give top employees plaques or art glass with their achievements inscribed into the awards. Corporate gifts with the name of the company and the name of the recipient are also popular options.
7. Ask Your Employees How They Want to Be Recognized
If you’re not sure about the best way to reward your employees, try asking them what they want. You could provide a list of potential rewards and let them choose, or you could have employees contribute their own original ideas. Not only will this guarantee that they’re satisfied with their reward, it also shows the employees that you value their input.
Remember, communication is key!
- Recognition is Powerful!
No matter what method you choose, remember that the most important thing is recognizing your employees’ hard work. At the end of the day, people just want to be acknowledged when they’re doing high-quality work. Even if you can’t give every employee a fun perk, make it a habit to thank them. They’ll feel like their work is being noticed, and in return, you’ll get better-performing, happier employees.
This is a guest post by Jeffery Brauer of Trophy Outlet.
Author: Jeffery Brauer
Jeffery Brauer is a freelance writer based in Indianapolis who has been writing about work-life balance and other lifestyle issues for nearly 10 years. He has served as a consultant for local small businesses, including Trophy Outlet.