Higher return on investment (ROI), better productivity, and happy employees — all three are key ingredients of a successful company. It’s the third one that can unlock the first two. It’s really not difficult to see why: happier or less stressed employees are more motivated to work. And the more productive they are, the higher your ROI. It’s that simple.
The formula for a happy workforce, however, is not as easy to achieve. For many companies, it remains elusive or worse, not a priority.
To achieve a happier workplace, it’s crucial for you to invest in the right environment and the right employee benefits. With these two in place, your employees will not only work harder, but they will also be driven and fulfilled to do so. Consider the following benefits to create truly motivated employees.
The longstanding standard 9-to-5 work shift is quickly becoming passe. For one, these hours don’t necessarily represent the best times for all employees to work. Some are early risers. Some are so-called vampires who are very productive at night.
By introducing flextime, you can get the best out of your employees based on their body clocks. You will be allowing your employees to work during times when they perform at their best. Introducing this benefit will, of course, depend on the nature of your business and company culture. But if these factors allow you to give it a go, you’ll find your people naturally gravitating toward working hours that are best for them.
Allow working from home
For a long time, work from home setups have been negatively stereotyped. Management traditionally didn’t trust their teams to be productive from their homes, suspecting that they would spend their hours slacking off rather than accomplishing any meaningful work.
However, in the last few years, companies have started to embrace work from home arrangements, so much so that Forbes and Fast Company are calling it the new normal. Some findings even argue that some employees are more productive working from home. And with the COVID-19 quarantines, many companies have had no choice but to rely on the creativity and productivity of home-based employees.
Not only do WFH employees save on expenses and avoid the stress of a daily commute, but they also achieve greater balance between work and life. And as with flextime, they are able to find better hours and rhythms in a WFH environment that allow them to be at their best. All these point to happier and more productive employees.
Hold team events
You can use team events and social activities to reward your employees and create stronger bonds within the company. This, in turn, will motivate more productivity and loyalty. Make sure these activities are engaging, so be creative.
They can be as simple as an office party or as elaborate as an entire weekend packed with activities. But what’s important is the event brings the team together in a fun and relaxing non-work environment.
This is also your chance to let your guard down, in a way, and show your workers that you value them. In a more sociable or even intimate setting, you can enjoy food, drink, or entertainment together without being interrupted by work.
Business magnate Richard Branson is famous for saying, “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough so they don't want to.” If you truly value your employees and believe in their potential, invest in their career growth. One way is by offering opportunities to develop new skills and advance their current ones.
Advancing their skills will open doors for them and take them to the next level. Not only will they be grateful, but your team will also grow stronger, as employees have more to offer.
These learning opportunities will depend on what your company can support. For instance, larger companies are able to sponsor employees to pursue advanced degrees, while smaller companies may only afford online courses and certificates. But as long as you’re giving them opportunities that show you want them to grow, they will feel valued and derive some satisfaction and well-being.
Establish family care programs
Your employees can bring the stress and worry of managing their families to the office with them. If your company can alleviate some of that burden and expense, your employees will greatly appreciate it. This will show not only through more loyalty but with better focus and increased productivity.
It’s no surprise then that benefits such as child care, elderly care, pet care, and similar assistance programs offered by larger companies make for attractive benefits to employee prospects. If you’re a small business that can’t offer these benefits, an alternative benefit can be additional personal days off for family emergencies and requirements. Some offer mothers some days of the week to work from home. Others offer paternity leaves. What matters is you show that you care for your employees’ families.
Whether it is a $500 end-of-year bonus or a $5,000 raise, awarding employees for good performance has a positive effect on both their motivation and productivity. What is important is to regularly recognize them for their hard work. If someone does great on a project, give them a shout-out. If your team achieves a milestone, take them out for drinks or for lunch. Rewards and recognition count when it comes to employee morale.
In many traditional workplaces, supervisors frown upon even short breaks, thinking employees are only slacking off and procrastinating. In the same environment, workers who stay at their cubicles for long periods, even working through lunch, are seen as productive go-getters.
Many modern workplaces, however, have begun to acknowledge that a lack of work-life balance often leads to a decrease in productivity. Your employees will eventually burn out, which can lead to poor performance and output. They may even end up sick and being absent.
Smart managers know to strategically include breaks into their team’s working day to give employees time to recharge both mind and body. This will motivate employees more so that more work can be done.
Employee satisfaction is crucial to employee productivity. Positive changes to your employees’ working environment and investments into their health and happiness can go a long way for your bottom line. For instance, technology can help make your employees’ tasks more streamlined, less stressful, and more productive. Talk to us at Netquest to find out more.