10 Apr Importance of Staff Happiness
There’s no doubt about it – keeping your staff happy and motivated is pivotal to any successful business…
But before you dig into your pockets, it’s not all about the pay packet. In fact, we’d go as far to say that a person’s salary has little impact on how content – and productive – they are in the workplace.
What really matters is how they’re treated. Yep, it’s the little things that count.
So if you’re looking to increase productivity and retention, decrease absences, and generally maximise your revenue, listen up…
Let’s start simple: the importance of listening to your staff is enormous. This is the backbone to any healthy employer-employee relationship, and will lay the foundations for a happy and confident workforce. They need to know that you genuinely care about what they have to say, be it negative or positive. So, far from the stereotype fat cat sitting in their lofty office, you need to be approachable. Not only will your staff feel more valued, but you’ll also be kept in the picture about their concerns, enabling you to act on them before they throw in the towel.
Secondly, the more human you are, the more your staff will relate to you and respect you. So, rather than talking shop all the time, make the effort to ask them how they are. Did they have a nice weekend? How’re the French lessons going? I hear you’re moving house… By getting to know them as individuals, you’ll have a better understanding of what makes them tick and how to get the absolute best out of them.
Continuing the theme of good communication, Stay Interviews are gold dust when it comes to staff retention. These yearly one-to-ones give employees an official opportunity to discuss any concerns they may have, which in turn enables you to change things for the better and ultimately keep hold of talent before they run.
You may think this is an obvious one, but you’d be amazed at how many businesses don’t utilise staff incentive and recognition programmes. This tangible appreciation and celebration of hard work and achievement is an absolute winner when it comes to motivating your workforce, and it needn’t be a costly or time-consuming activity. An extra day’s holiday here, a voucher there… these are the little touches that make staff feel recognised and valued. Oh, and please remember to celebrate their birthdays
Ok, so you’ve got your communication and incentives sorted; now let’s talk about your business’ environment and culture. Staff absolutely love to feel part of a strong brand that they can believe in. This means that you need to create and maintain a robust and engaging brand that saturates the entire business, from the moment they clock in, to the moment they leave their desk. Brand engagement appeals to our pack mentality, and the stronger the pack, the stronger your business will be. Make your staff feel part of something special.
Whilst we’ve touched on celebrating the individual through good communication and recognition, let’s just emphasise it one more time: you must make sure that your staff don’t feel like a faceless drone in a crowd of other faceless drones. This means recognising their unique needs and, if possible, adapting to them. Perhaps a working mum of four would prefer flexible hours. Or another staff member may need more flexibility when it comes to choosing holidays. Whilst we don’t expect you to pander to every request that lands on your desk, a certain amount of understanding will go a long way in making your staff feel cared for.
And lastly, cultivate your team’s relationships with one another. We all know what it’s like to walk into an office full of people who neither know nor like one another. This type of environment is poisonous to productivity, and therefore one of the most important aspects to get right. The words ‘team building’ can bring some people out in a rash, but if you’re creative with the activity you may well stumble across a magic wand when it comes to bringing your staff together.
And of course, striking a good work/play balance in the office also goes a long way. Some of the most successful businesses incorporate screen breaks into the working day, whereby staff can mingle, chat and generally get their mojo back.
So, there you have it: the recipe to creating a happy and motivated workforce, without the need for pay rises. If you communicate, congratulate and care about every member of your team, your business – and revenue – will blossom.