Gone are the days when a typical 9 to 5 job looked like sitting in a cramped cubicle with employees shuffling in and out in a daze. A holistic work environment is crucial for decreasing stress and increasing efficiency. A positive work environment helps boost productivity and employees’ morale. In this blog, let us shed light on how to create a positive work culture to ensure employee satisfaction.
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The Importance of a Positive Company Environment
Mutually shared core values pull the team together, resulting in new ideas, ambitious goals, and patience and acceptance of one another. Conversely, a toxic work environment would breed anxiety, low company loyalty and hostility among employees.
What does a toxic work environment look like?
- Mistrust and lack of communication among employees, which would result in misinformation being passed around.
- No inclusivity, which would create a feeling of alienation in certain employees from specific communities and groups that would breed the feeling of not being part of the team.
- No camaraderie among employees, which would result in awkward transitions of roles instead of a seamless work environment.
- A lack of work-life balance, which would induce higher rates of burnout in employees and slow down productivity.
Characteristics of a Positive Work Environment
Research suggests that employees are most likely to have a positive outlook on work if the culture is flexible and supports work-life balance. Lighting and comfortable temperature are also crucial to the mood of employees as too harsh or dark lighting may cause discomfort, and a high temperature would increase irritability.
Furthermore, it is also essential to be mindful of the fact that it is crucial for the employees to feel like they are doing meaningful work that makes a difference or impacts lives positively. Management styles also significantly affect productivity and work environments. Being berated, put down and micromanaged creates a hostile environment and resentment.
10 Ways to Foster a Positive Work Environment
- Spruce up the workspace
If the team routinely uses a physical office location, the employees would greatly appreciate a welcoming, functional environment with a warm office ambience. This entails anything from temperature-controlled settings to ergonomic furnishings. In addition to relieving discomfort, adjustable standing workstations and strategically placed computer screens can improve employees’ focus and mental health.
Using blue-enriched light bulbs in brainstorming areas can improve work output and lessen weariness. Warmer tones can be used in break rooms or conference rooms to generate emotions of calmness and relaxation. In conference rooms, the use of mid-tone lighting can help keep attendees focused while also fostering a more friendly atmosphere.
- Check in with your team.
Contrary to popular assumption, establishing a productive workplace for your team doesn’t need to be complicated. It should be no surprise that those who enjoy their jobs tend to do better work. Additionally, remote workers must understand that they are supported in ways other than through routine 1:1 chats. Companies can also use collaborative technologies to promote an open flow of discourse.
- Create open lines of communication
Keep your interactions with staff in mind. Upper management and team members should concentrate on communication strategies and how they affect fostering a positive work environment. Regular team meetings, as well as one-on-one meetings with each employee, keeps channels of communication wide open. Constant communication also builds rapport so that if an employee faces a problem, they will not be hesitant to reach out to the management.
- Recognise achievements
Rewarding fine work promotes a culture where hard work is valued and recognised, which motivates the entire team to keep up the good work or strive for the same acknowledgement. Rewards may be intrinsic (intangible rewards like personal achievement, and professional growth) or extrinsic (tangible rewards like money, gifts, and vacation).
- Make onboarding a priority.
Efficient onboarding is a crucial component of a pleasant work environment. It allows new hires the opportunity to learn about and become invested in the company culture. While some businesses opt to spend a month or more on onboarding, initiation should typically take place for at least the first two weeks.
- Make time for fun
You spend a significant portion of your time at work, so it’s critical that you establish a setting that is both professional and enjoyable. Workers tend to enjoy their jobs more when given the freedom to unwind and be themselves at work. The team could have scheduled breaks throughout the day, and they could be encouraged to personalise their workplace. And trips and retreats could also add to the bonding between the employees.
- Make space for equal and open discussions.
A strong and effective workplace should be the ideal setting for candid dialogues. Workshops and brainstorming sessions can be fantastic ways to come up with fresh, intriguing, and creative ideas. Companies should also make space for the more soft-spoken employees to put their opinions and ideas forward to foster a more inclusive environment for everyone.
- Anonymity can be your friend.
The feeling of safety at work can truly change when people are anonymous. You can accomplish this in a number of ways, for instance, by using an anonymous feedback form. This can be helpful if you need to talk about delicate subjects or solicit strong opinions or feedback.
- Create an inclusive workspace
Create an environment where employees from every culture and background feel safe and welcomed to express themselves and their culture. It would be best to sensitise your employees to what is appropriate and inappropriate towards different cultures.
- Trust your team
As a leader, you must have faith in your group. Avoid micromanaging or taking on duties that belong to others because this will make your team feel unappreciated. Instead, foster a culture of trust and grant your team autonomy, boosting morale among your staff. Teams will often respond more positively when their ideas and decisions are respected, and their opinions and skills are acknowledged.
How to talk about sensitive topics?
Most people find it difficult to broach delicate subjects in a professional setting. The capacity to successfully negotiate these challenging situations is the mark of a workplace with a secure and healthy environment, although occasionally, challenging discussions and seminars may be necessary.
Perhaps there has been an event that needs to be addressed, perhaps an employee needs to go to HR with a private issue, or perhaps candid but challenging feedback needs to be provided. Whatever it is, having a solid plan in place can help you ensure that the delicate subject is covered adequately and politely and that individuals approaching you do so in a way that gives them confidence.
We are Team EMB the voice behind this insightful blog.