Happy staff are good for business, happy staff encourage other workers to be happy and they encourage the best of potential employees when recruiting. Happy staff work harder making the customer happier. Unfortunately you can’t just wave a wand and demand your staff are happy and it’s not always just a case of paying as higher salary as possible, it’s the little things that create a happy workplace
Obviously if someone keeps making the same mistake over and over or if someone makes a mistake that does serious damage you don’t break out the Champaign but it’s human to make mistakes. You can only learn from mistakes so whether it’s someone pulling down the racking in the warehouse or someone sending an email to a client by mistake make sure everyone knows they’re not going to be trouble. You now know the racking probably wasn’t secured properly or that all emails should have a ten second recall time (like you can get with Gmail).
Unless you work in an environment that requires a high level of presentation don’t make your staff wear suits to work every day; let them wear what they want. If you look at most large media agencies, you’ll see rows of designers and coders in Converse trainers and jeans – the more relaxed your staff are the happier they’ll be. Yes you might get a few customers through but so long as your staff don’t take it to extremes, your potential customers will be impressed by the happy atmosphere.
Offering flexi hours is a great way to attract a better calibre of staff, if they have kids to pick up let them get in the office for 8:00am and leave at 4:00, if they have doctors’ appointments let them make the time up any time before the next pay day or if they just like to finish a littler earlier on Fridays let them only take half an hour for lunch. If you trust them to manage themselves they could even come in an hour or two late if they had a heavy night the previous night rather than putting up with hung over staff, this has to be better than them calling in sick.
Whilst the office may be a place of work if doesn’t have to be decorated like a prison and this means more than just a couple of half dead plants dotted about the place. Something as silly as a few jars of penny sweets dotted around the office can make a lot of difference. Have breakaway areas where your staff can go to work quietly away from the hustle and bustle, let your staff listen to their own music and have a few interesting plants to liven things up.
No matter whether you’re a haulage company, record label or independent shop all your staff will have an idea or two of what they’d do if they were in change. Most these ideas probably come out down the pub on a Saturday night but have one afternoon a month where everyone gets together and has a ‘creativity session’. Any ideas can be put forward and you never know they might come up with a really clever idea for the business. Some ideas will be incredibly unfeasible but by showing them their ideas are at least listened to they’re going to be more inclined to work hard.
You can have all the fancy toys, cool gadgets and treats money can buy but that doesn’t mean you’re a good company to work for. If you have staff you don’t feel pull their weight or don’t fit in or whom you just don’t like you need to make them feel included. Find out what it is about the place they don’t like, maybe they’re going through a tough time away from work, maybe they feel a particular client or member of staff wasn’t treaded well. Letting them just tick along isn’t fair on them or you.