How to create a positive work environment that will keep your employees more motivated and productive!
There is a multitude of factors that can lead to a workplace becoming a toxic, negative space. This can have hugely negative effects on the ability of employees to carry out their responsibilities, perhaps because a task has not been clearly communicated or because they do not feel like their work will be recognised and appreciated.
This can be hugely demotivating for staff and can lead to burnout, job dissatisfaction, poor mental health, and high levels of staff churn. So, what can you do to create a more positive and sustainable working environment? Let’s explore some of the steps can take!
Recognise and celebrate achievements
It’s understandable for someone to feel unmotivated to perform at their best when they’re at work if they don’t feel like they are going have that work appreciated or even acknowledged.
“We all have a human need to be appreciated for our efforts, and so when your colleagues don’t notice [your contributions], it makes you feel as though you don’t belong,” says Karen Dillon, writer of the HBR Guide to Office Politics. And
One of the most significant contributing factors to a negative work environment is poor communication. It’s a widely accepted truth that organisations function at their best when they have clearly defined and communicated objectives to work towards. Issues begin to arise when these objectives are not clearly communicated, including missed deadlines, work not completed to a sufficient standard, and a general feeling of unhappiness among staff.
It’s important to be aware of the fact that making an effort to create a positive work environment through improving communications doesn’t mean that negative communication and criticism do not have their place in a workplace. The important thing to be aware of is that communication – whether positive or negative, mission-critical or not – should be clear and unambiguous.
Ensure that staff members feel safe at work
It’s vital, in order to create a positive work environment, to create a safe one. Some managers and business owners, however, struggle to achieve this consistently. So, how do you ensure that your employees feel as safe as possible in the workplace? Let’s take a look at a few ways you can do it:
- Be proactive in emphasising potential risk factors in the workplace, and ensure that employees are educated and prepared for any potentially harmful situations that may arise.
- Take a proactive approach towards preventing bullying and harassment by creating specific policies against such behaviour.
- Make physical and digital security a priority. This may take the form of regular cybersecurity audits, hiring more security staff, creating new safety and security processes on site, or investing in security technology for your premises.
Listen to new ideas
Showing empathy and attentively listening to the opinions, concerns and feedback of those around you in the workplace helps to create a working environment in which everyone feels valued and appreciated.
As Elle Kaplan points out in her article on the benefits of active listening in the workplace “Listening may seem simple. You may not consider it to be a powerful tool. However, more and more business leaders and entrepreneurs are taking it on as a serious skill and are reaping the rewards.” Not only does an active, attentive approach to listening to others create a more positive working environment, it can also make your organisation more productive.
Improve levels of trust between colleagues
This pointer is, in a way, a culmination of everything we’ve gone through previously in this post. An essential aspect of creating a positive working environment is for everyone in your workplace to trust each other, on a personal and professional level. As Susan M. Heathfield argues in her article on how to build trust in the workplace, it’s important to “start building trust from the beginning of your relationship with each new employee.”
So, how do you go about encouraging increased levels of trust to create a positive work environment? Let’s explore some of the most achievable steps you can take to improve trust:
- Always be welcoming to new members of the team. It’s scary enough for new team members on their first days in a new workplace, and the last thing you would want is for new starters to feel excluded. Ensuring that new hires feel included from the offset sets a great first impression with them and creates a generally more positive working environment
- Be consistent with every member of the team: don’t give anyone on the team preferential or overly negative treatment. This can lead to team members feeling underappreciated and as though they’re being excluded from an in-group within the workplace.
- Respect the time of your colleagues. If you’ve booked a meeting at 2:30 pm, that’s when you should turn up. If you absolutely can’t make it for that time, make everyone involved aware of this as early as possible. This increases levels of trust within the workplace and ensures that your team knows you can be relied upon.
If you want to create a more positive and productive place, as well as improving your security and safeguarding procedures, switching to a digital visitor management and sign-in solution is a fantastic way to do this! Staff are more likely to feel safe, and employers less worried about their safety, when their data is stored and managed securely.
Want to discuss your requirements for a sign-in system and see if it can help you create a positive work environment? Our expert team are on hand at +44 (0) 191 341 0016. Alternatively, head over to our contact page for more ways to get in touch!