Owning a small or large business has its perks. As a business owner, you’re in control of how you lead your team and how you treat your employees. It’s commonly known that happier employees are more motivated, more productive and more satisfied with their work and work environment.
As people are spending most time of their days at work, the least you, as an employer, can do is try to keep them happy. How? Even though increasing their salary is always an acceptable solution, you have to think about your company. Constantly increasing paychecks will severely damage your business and will weaken the motivation because they know larger paychecks are coming their way.
Instead of that, we reveal the top 9 secrets to keeping your employees happy at the workplace, and they are all budget-friendly!
1. Provide great conditions
The first step to happier employees is providing great work conditions. What does that mean? Imagine working in a building with no access to the natural light and, on top of that, the roof is leaking. Those work conditions would not only ruin the reputation of your company but are putting your employees at risk as well.
No sunlight can decrease motivation, make your employees tired and even sick and depressed. Similarly, a leaky roof is in danger of collapsing. This environment doesn’t positively affect anyone. To keep your employees happy, make sure the workplace is clean, dry and adequate for a dedicated group of professionals that work for your company.
Depending on the type of your business and the available space, think of the layout that will keep everyone satisfied. Don’t forget to take into consideration the type of work each employee does. If they are working in a team, an open office will be ideal for uninterrupted communication between team members. However, if their tasks require peace and quiet, separate offices are a better solution to keep your workers satisfied.
2. Encourage team building
One of the most important aspects of job satisfaction and happiness at the workplace is a good relationship with your colleagues. Being mentally “sick” every time you have to leave the house and go to work can be damaging for your health and the business. That’s why you should encourage your employees to get to know each other and build better relationships.
The truth is, not everyone is going to like everyone, but for the sake of your company, you should at least encourage respect and tolerance towards the differences and different opinions. Each team needs to know how to function as a whole. What’s a better way to achieve that than by organising team building activities?
Team building activities don’t have to be organised on the work premises. The weekend getaways are the ideal opportunities for your team to get to know and understand each other better. By investing in such activity, you’re investing in your team and your company. You’re creating a supportive atmosphere that will make your employees happy.
3. Respect them and their work
Nobody likes to stay at the place they don’t feel respected. That’s one of the main reasons frequent employee fluctuation happens. How to prevent your employees from leaving? The answer is simple: make them happier by showing appreciation and respect for the work they do.
Your employees invest their time and knowledge in completing projects and tasks for your company. Besides paying them a good salary, reward them by showing appreciation for their work. Compliment their well-done tasks and help them improve if they are making mistakes. Create an atmosphere where everyone will be comfortable to work at.
Your employees are professionals in their field. Rewarding them from time to time won’t hurt anybody. By giving them bonuses at the end of the month, or providing a few more days off, you’re keeping your workers happier and more motivated to continue doing an amazing job.
4. Invest in their progress
If you want great results for your company, you will have to invest in your employees. Does that mean increased paychecks? It could, but not necessarily. Investing in your employees includes investing in their knowledge and skills.
Why should you invest in them, if they are already professionals? Every business field advances at its own pace. If you keep playing by the old rules, you’ll quickly get ruled off of the game. So, if you want your company to progress, your employees need to make the progress in their knowledge as well. Send them on courses and seminars that will be useful for their sake and the sake of the company.
However, knowledge isn’t the only thing they can work on. Invest in their soft skills as well. What are soft skills? Soft skills include non-technical skills such as assertive communication, time and stress management, organisation, etc. They will help your employees feel more confident and be more productive while working.
5. Give them freedom of choice
Without freedom, is anyone truly happy? This doesn’t mean that you should let your employees do whatever they want to, but to simply allow them to choose. Let them decide about some business-related things.
For example, instead of assigning them tasks, offer them opportunities. By offering them an opportunity to solve the task, you’re allowing them to use their skills and knowledge and grow their area of expertise. Each task has to be easy enough, but interesting and challenging at the same time. So, give them freedom of choice to decide whether they’ll tackle the challenge or not.
In addition to that, you can let them choose how they want to decorate their workspace. If they share an office, allow them to choose a colour and add personal details to their desks. However, be careful with how much freedom you give. If they can’t agree on something, it can create unnecessary conflict. Besides that, too many personal details can be distracting for your employees, so don’t forget to set some limits and boundaries.
6. Celebrate little victories
Celebrations are wonderful events that inspire happiness and excitement. Celebrating the company’s achievements is a great way to show appreciation for the employees and bring everyone closer. What you mustn’t forget are the individual achievements.
When your employees reach a certain goal, personal or business-related, it should be celebrated! Who doesn’t love a big “thank you for your effort and congratulations on your success” celebration? It will make them feel happy and appreciated. You don’t have to organise a big party every time. Even a simple announcement and a small gift, such as a gift card, flowers or chocolate, can make their day brighter.
By celebrating little victories, you demonstrate that the goals are achievable if you work hard enough. That will make your employees approach each task more productively, and be more motivated and happier to complete it.
7. Work-life balance
No matter how hard-working your employees are, keep in mind that they are people with a life outside of their job. To keep them happy, respect their shifts and don’t make them do over-time unless they want to. Their job should stay in the workplace.
To achieve maximum satisfaction, encourage your employees to have a work-life balance. What does that mean? This means that your employees should learn how to balance work and life responsibilities. House responsibilities shouldn’t be solved during working hours, but that also means that no work-related things should be done at home.
To contribute to that balance, offer a flexible schedule. You can reward your employees with some time off if they complete their tasks on time. It’s a win-win situation for the company and the employee.
8. Encourage breaks
Sitting at the desk from 9 to 5 can be horrible for productivity and your employees’ health. Can you imagine the headache and backache every morning? That’s why you must encourage employees to take breaks. More breaks equal to happier employees.
More frequent but shorter breaks are ideal for productivity and motivation. Instead of scrolling through their phones, encourage your employees to go to the breakroom and socialise with their co-workers. To “lure” your employees to use the breakroom more often, offer free coffee. If you truly care about your employees’ happiness, you’ll make sure to serve high-quality coffee from only the best commercial coffee machines at the workplace. Tasty coffee from the best coffee machines is the great introduction to a productive morning, motivated noon, and creative afternoon.
Besides boosting your employees’ productivity, free coffee makes them happy. Drinking coffee helps them relax in-between strenuous tasks and lets their mind wander away from the stress. If you offer a delicious cup of coffee every time they take a break, your employees will know that you care about their well-being.
9. Listen to their needs
Communication is the key to satisfaction and happiness in the workplace. That doesn’t mean that only you should talk, and your employees can only listen. A healthy communication flows both ways. That’s why you need to learn to listen to your employees’ concerns.
Take your time to listen to your employees’ concerns, worries, and complaints. By listening, you can come up with the solution and prevent possible issues from occurring. Your employees can give you the best feedback on how well you run your business. If you consider their suggestions, they’ll feel like they’re contributing to the growth of the company, which will make them happier.
Another reason to listen to your employees’ needs is to make them more satisfied with their jobs. For example, if they are unhappy because they don’t have baked goods at the breakroom, you can easily solve that problem by providing snacks and baked goods. If the personal issues are keeping them blue, be there to listen to their problems, and encourage them to think of different approaches to them. That will help them solve it with ease.
As you can see, these 9 secrets will help you take better care of your employees making them happier and more satisfied with their workplace.
Your company’s success partly depends on the happiness of your employees. If you don’t provide good conditions, chances are your employees won’t invest maximum capacity in your business.
So, if you want your business to succeed, ensure that you’re doing everything in your power to keep your employees happy and motivated.