A negative work environment has far reaching implications.
Anyone who has dreaded going to work because of a negative work culture is not alone. A toxic office environment causes increased stress, along with a number of health problems for employees. “They range from eczema, increased anxiety, insomnia and high blood pressure…A recent study also shows that those who experience psychological stress at work face twice the risk of cardiovascular disease,” according to an American Express article.
A toxic, negative workplace is bad for everyone. As a business owner or manager, it’s important that you create a positive work culture. It will result in a better environment and happier employees.
Why a positive work environment is so essential to business success
According to Insperity.com, “Happy employees are 85 percent more efficient, experience a 60 percent drop in absenteeism and stay twice as long in their jobs…creating a measurable impact on engagement, retention, safety, wellness, employer brand and even cost control goals.”
In other words, happy workers will work harder for you. If your employees are under constant stress or they feel oppressed, belittled, or unappreciated they will eventually leave. Then you’ll be left with the task of finding a replacement, which takes time, money, and effort that should be going toward building your business.
So, how can you create a culture that makes employees want to come to work?
Here are 6 tips to help.
1). Start at the top. As a business owner or manager, you are the single most important factor in creating a positive work environment. Your attitude and general demeanor will trickle down and affect everyone in the office. If you are constantly negative, shaming people and finding fault in front of others, employees will not be motivated to do a good job. Instead, practice an attitude of happiness and reflect that in everything you do. Instead of focusing on what’s wrong, turn it around and try to find something that you can be positive about. That’s not to say you should always be smiling and laughing, but if you work at staying positive, your employees will follow suit.
2). Hire positive employees. Next to “the boss,” the next most important factor in creating a positive work culture hinges on your employees. The team you build will go a long way to having a workplace that is fun and energetic versus one that is filled with animosity and stress. Even one negative employee can drag the entire team down. “Make sure employees are professional and team players. The same idea translates to those who are already in the office. When employees work with toxic workers, they are more likely to become toxic themselves,” according to Business News Daily.
3). Say “thank you” and “good job.” Never discount the power of praise. Everyone wants to be assured they’ve done a good job. If all employees hear from you is criticism, they will soon become discouraged. According to Insperity.com, “Make it a goal to compliment people. Recognizing even small accomplishments and praising your team members in meetings or in an email can make a big impact.”
4). Having a purpose matters. Employees want to feel like what they do actually matters in the long run. It’s easy for daily tasks to become drudgery. Make sure every employee knows the work he or she does is essential to the company’s mission, vision and goals. “Engaged employees are efficient, enthusiastic and are willing to do what it takes to help your organization succeed. Creating a sense of purpose for your employees is an investment in your company’s future,” according to Insperity.com.
5). Encourage regular breaks and social interaction. Taking regular breaks gives the brain a rest. Having a designated area where employees can go to decompress is helpful. It’s also a good idea to encourage social interaction that doesn’t have to do with work. This will encourage team building and keep everyone motivated.
6). Pay attention to the actual office environment. By office environment, we mean things like lighting, furniture, artwork, and even color choices. If the lighting is bad or the office chairs are uncomfortable, it will cause problems over time. “If it’s not possible to incorporate natural lighting through windows, there are other options. Blue-enriched light bulbs may reduce fatigue and increase happiness and work performance…Use this type of lighting in brainstorming rooms. In meeting or break rooms, use warmer tones to promote calmness and relaxation. In conference rooms, use middle tones that welcome workers while keeping them alert,” according to Business News Daily.
You might try giving employees the option of having a standing desk. Makes sure office furniture is ergonomic so that it doesn’t end up causing back, wrist or other issues.
Creating a positive work culture is essential to a successful business. Incorporate these 6 tips to ensure everyone is happier…including you and your customers.