How To Create A Productive Workplace Culture
By Zoe Little
Regardless of whether you work for a big company or a smaller business, one of the most important parts of a successful company is the employees. Invested, hard-working employees are the foundation of a business and their happiness and enjoyment at work should be a top priority for anybody in a leadership position. Workplace culture refers to the shared values, practices and beliefs that guide the way employees interact with one another, their managers and customers while at work. It’s about how people work together towards their objectives and the manner in which they treat each other. Part of creating a successful company where the employees are happy means having great workplace culture and creating the type of work environment where team members work together, share knowledge, openly communicate and provide support and friendship to each other.
Here’s how you can create a productive workplace culture that will help your company thrive.
- Ensure open communication
Effective communication is one of the most important aspects of a healthy working environment and helps to create a productive workplace where employees and employers are on the same page. A culture of communication motivates people and helps to ensure transparency in the workplace. This, in turn, allows for an atmosphere of trust and openness among colleagues. As an employer or leader, it is important to constantly check in with your employees and regularly discuss their work, your expectations, the goals of the company and the progress they are making. This is important for productivity because a productive employee is one that knows what they are expected to achieve and what work they should be focusing on due to those objectives. Something that can make employees feel stressed, overwhelmed and as a result upset and unproductive, is shifting or unclear expectations. This leads to a lack of motivation and job dissatisfaction. As a result, consistent communication is essential to the health of a company. Ensure there is plenty of opportunities for your employees to communicate with you, even if you aren’t always in the office.
- Listen to your employees
Part of open communication isn’t just you talking to your employees about what they should be doing. It involves seeking feedback and actively listening to what your employees have to say. To understand how to improve the culture of your workplace and the employee experience, you need to know how people are complaining and what issues they might be facing at work. Creating a productive workplace culture involves creating a culture where employees feel that they can voice their concerns or address an issue that might be impeding their productivity. By giving team members the opportunity to shape the workplace culture, you are sure to see an increase in productivity because they will be working in an environment they are happy with.
- Have flexibility in the workplace
For many people, the rigid 9-5 work day, five days a week is not an ideal way to manage work and family commitments and can often lead to an unhealthy work-life balance. Research actually shows that the 9-5 office culture can lead to employee disengagement and a better way of ensuring employee productivity is allowing them to be more in control of the hours they work. This might be by allowing employees to work remotely when necessary or allowing team members to start earlier and finish earlier if it suits their schedule better. Flexible working arrangements help to create an environment where employees feel as if their time is valued and employees who feel that they are appreciated and cared for in their workplace are more likely to be more productive with the hours they dedicate to work.
- Health and wellness benefits
There is a direct correlation between health and productivity. Employees who are healthy are more likely to be happy and happy employees are more likely to be motivated and energised at work. This is why offering office perks around health and wellness can help to contribute to a productive office environment. They can make a big difference in the atmosphere in the office and encourage employees to make healthier decisions in other aspects of their life. Some ways you can offer health and wellness benefits are through offering gym membership, having on-site fitness facilities, free counselling services or stocking the kitchen with free healthy snacks. While offering perks requires a small financial outlay in the beginning, the payoff can be exponential if it means that your employees feel and work better!
- Celebrate achievements
Employees are more productive when they feel that they are being recognised for their work. For this reason, a great workplace culture is one where leaders celebrate the accomplishments of their employees and as a result, employees feel motivated to work towards collective objectives. Celebrating achievements doesn’t always have to be done in a material way – it can be as simple as verbally acknowledging the contribution of an employee and thanking them for their work.
- Value personality as much as skills
When hiring new talent, it is important to consider what impact each new member will have on the team and company culture. While experience and technical skills are important to think about during the hiring process, it is also important to consider the personality of the candidate and how they will fit into the work environment. If you just focus on proficiency in technical skills you may end up hiring someone who causes conflict in the workplace which will ultimately have a negative impact on productivity. Instead, look for team members who will help to maintain a culture of teamwork, transparency and openness.
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