1. Communication, communication, communication
recent survey, 34% of employees identified a lack of interdepartmental communications as being a key cause of stress. As the second most prevalent cause of stress identified it’s clear that employees value transparency highly. Well, who doesn’t? Letting employees know where they stand is an easy way to help them to feel secure in their job; making sure that they’re aware of any upcoming workplace changes, whether the company is meeting targets, and what your plans are going forward, can all help to keep your team happy, which in turn means you’ll keep your team. Useful, that.
Having regular catch-ups with team members can also help to provide reassurance; making sure that employees know how they fit into the bigger picture and what their personal goals should be can also help to provide stability and to retain staff. An employee handbook, listing company policies, structure, and rules, can really help to keep everyone on the same page too.
It’s also important to make sure that your team know when they will and won’t be working. Uncertainty over scheduling can bleed into an employee’s home life, preventing them from really switching off from work or making long term plans. Making sure that
staff know when they’ll be working ahead of time can combat this to keep your team happy. 2. Perks of the job
We know what you’re thinking – this one already sounds expensive. It really shouldn’t have to be though, if done right; you’ll soon find that your team appreciate a properly considered treat far more than they will if you just throw money at the problem. With the work/life balance a hot topic, employees are increasingly likely to value leaving early the day before a holiday above a long and expensive team-building trip. Trust us. Something as simple as occasionally supplying a picnic lunch can also be a great perk, or even providing access to training and personal development resources. If your employees feel valued they’ll be happier and be more inclined to work hard in return – everyone’s a winner!
3. Listening to your team
Of course, there’s no point in providing any perks if they aren’t what your staff want; listening and giving them the chance to have input is key in order to keep your team happy. An anonymous suggestion box is a great way of learning what your team
really think. You may not always follow their requests – 5 day weekends, for instance, would be great but might not be practical for most businesses – but at the very least you’ll know if the decision you’re making is likely to be popular or not so that you can manage it accordingly.
set their own availability preferences can also be a good way to keep your staff feeling valued; although occasional horrible shifts are a part of life matching employees with the times they prefer to work when possible can only be a good thing both for them and for you. They’ll be able to plan their free time more effectively and be more engaged and motivated when at work. 4. Working smarter, not harder
Overworking can be a real killer for a workforce. Sure, it can seem great at first; who doesn’t want a team dedicated enough to work overtime and skip breaks? But that dedication can quickly turn to stress which in turn hits productivity levels – suddenly your team are working extra hours not because they want to but because they’re not achieving enough during the day and that’s no good for anyone.
This isn’t new information, either;
studies published as early as 2011 have concluded that your best employees will be those who take regular breaks, allowing them to be far more focused when actually working and therefore more productive overall. They’re also likely to be happier as they’ll be able to feel a level of control over their day. In short, all of this means that it’s in both of your interests to make sure that employees are taking breaks and only working overtime when there isn’t another option. Scheduling shifts to make sure that workload is balanced across your team and that employees aren’t starting a new shift without having had time to recover from the previous one is also essential to maintain a productive workforce. 5. Remembering your Ps and Qs!
It may sound silly, but you should never underestimate the impact of simply saying “thank you”.
Research has shown that 81% of employees work harder when they’re shown appreciation by their boss, and when something so easy can have such a positive impact it’s hard to find an excuse not to do it. Your team are a driving force in your business; you know that and it’s important that they do too.
Encouraging your team to praise one another can also be incredibly valuable. It helps to build a better general working environment as well as boosting employee morale and shouldn’t be overlooked. Prompting employees to publically flag colleagues who have gone above and beyond each week can be a good way of getting this started; with a bit of care and attention positive reinforcement will quickly become a habit, helping to boost the whole team.
So there you have it; listen to your employees, make sure they feel valued, and treat them as you’d want to be treated yourself and you won’t go too far wrong. It sound simple when we put it like that, doesn't it?