Directing your employees to share your passion for making the company better can be a challenge because technically, they have no stake in it. However, studies have shown that when leaders find the time to engage the staff and make an effort to improve their well-being, the more the latter are inspired to enhance their performance.
Group supplemental insurance carriers, for example, found that if a company invests in a person’s health or fitness, fallout rates are lower and people actually look forward to showing up for work every day. So, how can a company show that it cares?
1. Provide a professional working environment
By providing an environment that’s conducive for work, you show your employees that you respect their skills and time. This includes having the right equipment and supplies to perform tasks, setting up the right places for doing actual work, taking breaks, or doing personal stuff, having guidelines on decorum and dress code (depending on the type of industry you are in), and more. Being in a well-equipped office motivates staff to perform better because there are resources available for them to do so.
2. Be very clear about company goals and expectations
Employees feel lost in a company that does not know where it is headed or is not clear with the team about its goals. Companies that fail to communicate these to their teams have high fallout rates because people really want to be able to contribute to a bigger cause, and not just show up for work and take orders from bosses. By involving your staff in company plans, you show that you value their presence and opinions on how to make the company do better.
3. Cheer for effort
Many companies mistake appreciation for incentives, in that the only way to show an employee that he or she is valued is to provide prizes for work that’s done or team goals that are met. This if-then formula often backfires because it’s not all the time that the company has an “if” situation that needs to be fulfilled.
Appreciation, on the hand, is not just about the results. It is a recognition of a person’s hard work and efforts, plus the favorable result. When employees are acknowledged and cited for their efforts, studies show that they become more motivated and confident at work. It also helps let them know that they are on the right path and are in a good standing with the company.
4. Provide time for breaks and leisure
Allow time for staff to take breaks when they need to. Of course, lunch or coffee breaks are a staple part of the schedule, but companies that have less strict rules about gluing people to their desks make for a healthy work atmosphere. You can also schedule quiz nights, movie nights, or other leisure activities at certain times in a month. This way, your staff get to know the rest of the team better and appreciate their work more.
5. Provide protection
It is required for offices to ensure that all employees are compliant with Social Security obligations and such. However, if you could do more for your staff, like provide a health plan or group supplemental insurance, that would also be better. Some companies even provide free gym memberships to encourage fitness, as well as regular personal enrichment seminars so that team members also get to improve their own skills while growing with the company.
While companies really can’t force their employees to “care,” you produce more motivated staff that will render positive performance by showing them that you value their contributions and their well-being. It’s not always about how high one’s salary is or how many incentives he or she gets. A company that knows how to take care of the social and psychological well-being of its teams will certainly fare much better.