People are the heart of every organization. When employees feel heard, cared for, and supported, they go out of their way to help one another. On the other hand, when employees don’t feel like their voices are being heard and that leadership doesn’t care about them as individuals, productivity decreases, and employee turnover rates rise. A recent survey showed that 61% of respondents valued a better working experience and improved employee well-being as a reason to take a new job or stay in their current position.
So, creating a positive workplace atmosphere can go a long way toward retaining great employees. An employee’s experience largely hinges on how that person feels about their job on any given day — not so much what the job is, what it pays, or any other external factors. The emotional intelligence of leaders matters significantly when it comes to creating a positive work environment. Here are some tips for engaging your team members at work:
Pay attention to your management skills.
All managers have their own style and way of managing employees. Some managers are highly hands-off, and others like to be more involved in the day-to-day tasks. Some managers are better than others at reading the room and noticing when employees need more attention or understanding. We all have blind spots. This is why it’s essential to pay attention to your management skills and note areas that you need to work on. If you find that employees are having issues with you and your management style, ask them what you can do differently.
If you notice that employees are struggling to meet deadlines or goals, you may have the urge to step in and start micromanaging. But this type of behavior can be highly damaging. Not only does micromanaging stall productivity, but it also stifles employee creativity and morale. Micromanaging can also cause employees to feel like they aren’t meeting their full potential, and in turn, this can cause them to look for other opportunities. If you notice employees falling behind, check to see if a more significant issue, such as miscommunication or lack of resources, needs to be addressed. If not, try to avoid micromanaging and instead rely on your employees to be creative and work through their challenges together.
Ask for employee feedback.
Asking for employee feedback can be uncomfortable. But in reality, you are doing your team members a favor. With their input, you can improve your management style and also work to solve operational issues. If an employee has feedback for you, it is essential to listen and take it seriously. If you take it to heart, you can change your management style, creating a better work environment for everyone.
Focus on a productive working ambiance
The type of work environment you have can make all the difference in engaging your team members and creating a positive work experience. Here are some ways you can transform your workspace to create a more engaging and productive working ambiance:
- Create an effective and inviting break room: If you have an onsite break room, you can transform it into a place where employees eat lunch and rest. Kitchen amenities and supplies, along with comfortable furniture to relax in. Include a music system you can play around the office, such as SiriusXM music for business, in communal areas, or for individual employees to listen to at their desks if they wish.
- Be creative with your office space: Pay attention to the layout of your office to ensure it benefits employees and your working culture and affords them the practicality to do their jobs. Then add a bit of personality, paying attention to color schemes, decor, and navigation within the space.
Encourage collaboration and innovation.
We all know that employees work better together, but this doesn’t always happen organically. You are the leader, and you need to make it happen. With that said, there are a few ways you can encourage collaboration and innovation:
- Offer employee benefits that allow for working remotely: While you can’t force employees to work together, you can offer benefits that encourage it, such as allowing employees to work remotely. This gives them the freedom to work with others and will enable them to focus on their work and be productive.
- Create collaborative workspaces: You can also transform your physical space to encourage collaboration. You can do this by creating meeting rooms that encourage people to work together and ensure office areas where employees can sit and talk if needed.
- Encourage employees to try new things: If you want your team members to grow and learn, you must encourage them to try new things. You can create a flexible work schedule that allows employees to take time off to try new hobbies or explore different interests. You can also offer benefits like profit-sharing or online education programs to help employees learn new skills.
There are many ways to engage your team members at work, but it all starts with creating a positive work environment. If employees feel heard, cared for, and supported, they go out of their way to help one another. And positive team engagement is contagious – it can spread from department to department and positively impact productivity and your bottom line.