Employee morale can have a big impact on your bottom line. A person’s morale is their outlook, attitude, satisfaction and confidence at work. Low employee morale can lead to a loss in productivity, collaboration and employee satisfaction as well as an increase in turnover and absenteeism.
Low morale can be caused by a lack of recognition, unclear expectations, poor communication, unreasonable workloads and undefined employee development opportunities. The good news is that there are many ways to improve employee morale, including handing out employee recognition gifts.
Ways to improve employee morale
- Encourage work-life balance: Employees who feel they have a good work-life balance are 21 percent more productive than their counterparts. To help employees achieve a work-life balance, offer flexible scheduling and the opportunity to telecommute if possible. Offering part-time positions or job sharing can also be helpful. Be sure to include employees’ family members in work-sponsored events like picnics, cookouts and baseball games. If you’re planning a family-friendly event, offer children a grab bag that’s just their size. Include a company logo’d colouring book, crayons and a boomerang.
- Help employees manage workloads: For better or worse, technology now allows employees to remain connected to their jobs 24/7. Encourage employees to unplug when off the clock so they have time each day to de-stress. Remind staff to use an email “out of office” response when they’re on vacation. When time away isn’t feasible, thank employees for their extra effort. If your staff is working late, order pizzas. If they’re coming in on a Saturday morning, provide donuts. A small gift, like a logo’d water bottle or spa kit , can go a long way to show your appreciation.
- Communicate early and often: A shared vision for the company is key to high employee engagement. Knowing how each team members’ efforts contribute to a shared goal can do wonders to improve morale. Make sure management and staff are on the same page by communicating early and often about company goals, successes and changes. Encourage managers to develop a relationship with each person they supervise. Holding regular one-on-one discussions, as well as department meetings, provides opportunities to get important face time. Be sure managers are addressing questions and gathering employee input on upcoming projects.
- Give timely recognition: Timely recognition lets employees know they are successfully fulfilling their job duties. Be clear about your expectations and set up an award system. For instance, if staff meets sales goals, are they eligible for a bonus, raise or gift? If so, how much? And by when? If offering an employee recognition gift, honour various levels of achievement with tiered awards—from a certificate of completion to an imprinted plaque to a crystal award.
- Provide paths for advancement: The opportunity for training and development, financial growth and career advancement are strong factors when it comes to improving morale. Have employees list their future plans and come up with a clear path to help them achieve their goals. The opportunity for in-house training or external seminars, raises, bonuses and job shadowing are all great motivators.
Remember, high employee morale is good for business. Using a few simple ideas, like encouraging work-life balance, helping employees maintain a manageable workload and good communication, you will likely see a big change around the office.