Encouraging a happy workplace
It is a truth, universally acknowledged, that a happy member of staff, is a productive member of staff. But don’t just take our word for it, a recent study by the Social Market Foundation and the University of Warwick, has found that happier workers are, on average, 12% more productive. Increasing the happiness in your workplace is difficult, however, as happiness doesn’t have a ‘one size fits all’ formula, just as we are all different, all businesses are different, and all workforces are different.
We’ve asked a few of the happiest workplaces we know what makes a happy workplace, and how can our blog readers foster this in their own businesses. In today’s blog, we’ll be sharing their advice.
Improve your workplace culture
Does your office feel like a pleasant place to work? Do you provide refreshments and breakroom activities? The little things can make a massive difference to how employees view their workplace, and give them that extra push to get to work in the morning. You should definitely be providing fresh clean water (you can read all about the benefits here, and view Borg & Overström’s exclusive hydration range here), but it’s often the extra touches that upgrade a workplace from a 9-5, to a destination of choice. Consider offering high quality tea and coffee, as well as selecting a water dispenser with the option of sparkling water. You can view a range of sparkling water dispensers, here.
Understand that each of your employees has individual needs and workplace preferences. The more introverted amongst your staff may find loud and boisterous workplaces stressful environments to work within, ensure that, where possible, a quiet working location is available to all staff. Modern offices are moving increasingly towards flexible working times and locations, allowing staff to choose their office times, lunch breaks, and when they want to work from home will increase their autonomy, and reduce their stress levels.
Tackle the causes of workplace stress
Every office has ‘office gripes’, you know the ones, ‘the office is too cold’, ‘these chairs are uncomfortable’, ‘we don’t get enough time for lunch’, these little factors add up and contribute to workplace stress, so whilst you may laugh these comments off, tackling them will send your employees a sign that you truly care about their wellbeing.
Not all employees are inclined to speak out, so enable staff to offer feedback by alternative means, such as a suggestion box. Enable open and honest discussion, staff should never be afraid to speak their minds. Liaising with your workplace union may be a good route to understanding the little, and not so little, issues within your workplace.
A mentally well workplace has a positive and transparent organisational culture. Encourage workers to discuss problems and issues as and when they arise in a supportive and non-judgemental atmosphere. Mind has some great resources for promoting positive wellbeing in the workplace, and you can find them here; www.mind.org.uk. Consider wellness initiatives, as modern businesses are increasingly implementing wellness programmes for staff members. These can range from mindfulness meditaton, and exercise classes, to group discussion and cookery sessions.
As well as wellbeing, don’t be afraid to inject a bit of fun into your place of business! Long gone are the days of embarrassing ‘team building’ exercises and groupwork games, these days, workplace cohesion can be enhanced with group trips, staff nights out, and charity fundraising activities. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box, you’ll be surprised at how much you learn about your staff and colleagues in unusual situations!
Hydrate your workers
In order to grow, plants need water. In order to be productive, happy, and healthy, employees require hydrating. Indeed, in a recent study, the University of Connecticut (2010), found that even a dehydration level of 1-2% causes a decrease in cognitive function. Studies have also found a connection between dehydration and planning skills, as well as the incidence of mistake. A hydrated workplace is one that is more productive, efficient, and cohesive. Talk to us today about refreshing your workplace with a Borg & Overström solution, or find the right water dispenser for your office from our specifier here.