2018 is here and it’s time to shake things up. Your business and employees can easily become stagnant. So, use this year to start trying new things and finding ways to improve your office. Here are a four ideas to get the juices flowing.
1. Learn what motivates your staff
If you still assume that your staff is motivated by cash bonuses you could be way off. Many studies have found that employees are motivated by a number of items other than additional pay. In fact, many employees would choose another reward if it were up to them. Here are some of the things that employees are motivated by:
- Paid time off. Provide ways for your employees to earn additional paid time off of work, or simply reward them with it if they have been working hard and putting in extra hours.
- Praise them more. Believe it or not some employees just want to be praised and recognized. Take the time to praise them and let them know how much you appreciate their work both privately and in front of others.
- Listen to their ideas. When a company asks for and listens to the opinions and advice of all employees it motivates employees to look at their job in a new way.
- Build a team environment. If you want your employees to be motivated and love their jobs then you need to build a team environment. Provide time for team building activities together and look for ways to add fun to the day, like Taco Tuesday.
2. Add a little fun
Business owners have a lot of stress; you can relate to that. There are so many things that you have going on each day. There are bills waiting to be paid, customers waiting for callbacks, and a long list of unread emails growing in your inbox. It’s easy to allow that stress to build and then take it out on your employees. In order to combat this, you need to add a little fun to the office.
There are many ways that you can accomplish this, but here are a few ideas that are favorites among employees at other organizations:
- Casual Friday. It sounds simple enough, but if your office has a dress code consider allowing your employees to have a casual Friday, even just once a month. It’s amazing what this does for your individual employees, the mood of the office, and the level of creativity that takes place.
- Send around or post a daily joke. Keep it clean and stay away from topics like government so you don’t risk offending anyone or starting a fight. Find a way to make your employees smile.
- Have an office pet. Studies have found that offices with a dog are more productive and the employees are happier. A good option would be a hypoallergenic dog so it will be ok for people with allergies and asthma.
- Celebrate the wins together. Did you close a big deal? Or, did you get a great deal on a product from a vendor? Celebrate with the whole staff together. And, make sure to celebrate the small things. If you feel that the office mood has been on a downward spiral throw a rootbeer float party to celebrate making it through Monday.
3. Cut down on emails
Emails take up way too much time. Between typing out what you are trying to say, and then retyping to make sure that it comes across the right way, to reading and responding to everything that comes in your whole day can be wasted. Picking up the phone and calling someone is more time efficient than email. Many times you will also be able to get a faster answer and move on to another task sooner.
Switch up 2018 and require that your employees begin calling each other instead of emailing. If documents need to be referenced in the conversation they can be sent prior to the phone call. This is a good way to get your employees to interact with each other, take a break from the screen, and waste less time. You will most likely find that you start to use this tactic with your customers and vendors as well because it is so much more efficient.
4. Think outside of the box
Spend some time as a staff thinking of the processes that you have in place, even the ones that have been set for years. Think about why you do them that way and ask for ideas on how to do them differently. Ask the employees for ideas on how to save time and money at work. The people that are doing the jobs on a daily basis are usually the ones that are going to know how to make the process better, yet many business owners never ask them.
Encourage employees to participate in this process by rewarding their efforts. Reward anyone that comes up with a money saving idea a gift card or other treat for making their suggestion and contributing to the company.
Don’t allow 2018 to pass you by without making some bold moves to grow your business. This is your year to try new things and find wild success in places you never would have guessed.