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Being a boss is not only about the bottom line; you also have to manage the people that are doing the work. Keeping morale high is a good way to ensure that productivity and efficiency remain at high levels and it takes a little effort on your part to keep that morale at a high level. Offering incentives for hard work, by letting your employees relax once in a while, remembering them during the holidays through parties, gifts, and also taking an interest in their lives are all ways to keep the morale high.
Offer Incentives for Hard Work
In the classic office place comedy Office Space, main character Peter says, “It’s not that I’m lazy. It’s that I just don’t care.” This can be a symptom of working in an office where hard work goes unrewarded, so in order to combat this tendency, give your workers a reason to go the extra mile. It can be as simple as motivating your sales staff by starting a sales contest in which the one with the best sales numbers for the month gets a prize. You can even offer to close the office early on a summer Friday if they manage to tie up loose ends before the weekend. You’ll be amazed at how much incentives work to increase productivity and efficiency.
Assign Occasional Time to Relax Together
Office work can get tedious, that’s no secret, so it’s nice to offer time to relax for a little bit and have some fun together. Talk to the Human Resources department and try to come up with some fun events for your workers, so they can take a break from their computers and socialize with their coworkers. During the summer, schedule an annual barbecue in the parking lot or have a potluck around Thanksgiving. You could even schedule a time to meet at the local bar for some drinks. They should never stop seeing you as a boss, but it’s always nice to add another side to the relationship.
Remember Them during the Holidays
When the holidays roll around, don’t forget to offer your employees a nice gesture, whether it’s a bonus, a party, or even something small like corporate holiday e-cards. Such small gestures do not go unnoticed by employees and it will make them feel wanted and respected. In turn, they will more likely show you the same respect and may even help with productivity.
Taking Time to Know About Their Personal Lives
It’s not a good idea to pry where prying isn’t wanted, but you should also remember that your employees have a life outside the office and a family they go home to at the end of the day. Showing an interest in their family, even if it’s simply small talk, can go a long way in boosting morale. Quite simply, making an employee feel like they are a person and not a work machine can help boost morale, especially when they are experiencing major life events like having a baby or getting married. Sometimes, just being an ear for someone can do wonders for a relationship and change their attitude towards work.
About the Author
By Claurence Dickens, a long time supervisor of a great team that didn’t build itself overnight.