Top 10 Ways to Improve Employee Morale
Copyright © 2012 by Ty Howard. All rights reserved.
Enhancing the good will (and productivity) in your workplace should be significantly important today, tomorrow, and in the future. Employees with high moral show up to work on time, spend more time actually working, show improved communication, eagerly contribute to creativity and innovation, call out from work less, and stay longer (retention wise) at a company that promotes and practices positive long-term employee morale improvement.
There is no quick fix approach to improving and revving up employee morale. In order to put you, your team and organization on the right track toward sustainable and higher levels of employee morale, it will take learning and constantly practicing the following list of sound employee morale improvement principles:
1. Be Authentic. While you may not be concerned with the details of your employees day to day lives, just being authentic and honest about why you acknowledge them can go a long way. Pretending to care will never improve employee morale, but saying, in so many words, "I genuinely want you to feel good about being here and about being a part of our team" can.
2. Communicate More. Time is a precious resource, ensure your communication is focused, transparent, consistent, frequent, and provide only as much detail as the recipient needs to understand and engage. Communicate more to inform, inspire, empower and elevate everyone around you on a daily basis.
3. Build a Culture of Trust. Show me a team or organization with high employee morale, and I will show you a team or organization that has successfully built a culture of trust. Trust is everything in a relationship, be it business or personal. Share information, be honest, provide constructive feedback, and speak with purpose and good intentions.
4. Create Ways to Contribute. All your employees can point out some area or time-consuming process in your organization that needs to be improved, but not all feel empowered to do so. At least once each quarter, hold Open-minded Think Tank Meetings with your team. This will allow you to listen to teammates to learn "what gets in the way of the good job they want to do." Then after each meeting your next step should be to involve them in the process of eliminating and untying the knots they've identified.
5. Welcome Ideas. "An idea that is developed and put into action is more important than an idea that exists only as an idea," says Buddha. Today, more than ever, companies know they must become more creative and innovative in order to survive and thrive. Your teammates and employees are your biggest resource for fresh creative and innovative ideas—constantly seek and welcome them.
6. Clique Less. If you seriously want to improve and build employee morale—publicly announce to your team or organization a call for the immediate elimination of all office cliques. There is nothing more de-motivating and de-energizing than having to work on teams or inside an organization that is plagued with known toxic cliques. Organizations with high employee morale continuously produce to the tune of a unified agreed upon creed, similar to this one: "One Vision—One Team!"
7. Smile More. When I worked in corporate human resources years ago, I made it a point to always be uplifting. Encouraging each of my teammates to tell keep their head up, chin up, and smiles up—it's the best energy booster to get you through the day! Right after I would share those encouraging words, a huge smile would pop up on their face. Working with people who smile a lot creates a more productive and harmonious work environment for everyone.
8. Encourage and Have Fun. More meaningful and significant outcomes are achieved inside of work environments where the boss encourages and wants employees to have fun while working harmoniously and productively than inside work environments where any form of fun is prohibited. Encourage teammates to talk about fun things like hobbies, crack appropriate and clean jokes, and stop for a moment to acknowledge and celebrate birthdays, graduations, newborns, and small and large achievements. This will boost morale, create more smiles, encourage team building, lower stress, and shorten or prevent team burnout.
9. Recognize and Reward—Often. If you ask most employees working inside an organization that is suffering from low employee morale, what would make them feel more valued, most of them would probably express a need to be recognized more for the hard work they do. You do not have to blow up your budget to recognize and reward your employees! Sometimes, all it takes is a simple handwritten note that says, "Thank YOU for a Job Well Done! I/we recognize and appreciate the hard work you do." Stop waiting until the end of the year or when it's way pass due. Be a boss, manager, supervisor, teammate or employee who often steps up to recognize and reward employees who deserve and have earned.
10. Stick to the Plan. If high employee morale is what you truly want for your team or organization—then Stick to the Plan for Improving Employee Morale. Employees place a very high degree of importance on the consistency of verbal and non-verbal communication, and action. No one, including you, likes to be a part of weak efforts or broken promises.
Employee morale is an important part of team and organizational success. When morale is high inside an organization, employees are passionate and motivated to work through any project timeline, team challenge, plan for change, or opportunity that comes their way. The more each individual on your team or inside your organization is cognizant of their own needs and strengths, and of others, adjustments can be made on both sides to introduce, improve, drive and optimize employee morale on all levels.
About the Author: Ty Howard,
Mr. Untie the Knots®,
Freeing Maximal Business, Performance, and Human Potential Daily
Ty Howard is an internationally recognized authority on organizational and managerial practices that optimize employee performance and success. He is the creator and lead facilitator of the trademarked "Untie the Knots® Optimal Performance Process," and the author of Untie the Knots®: Improving Habits, Choices, People, Relationships, Performance and Results, as well as dozens of published articles on employee and organizational performance and development worldwide. For information on his programs and services, visit: http://www.tyhoward.com.
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