Although it may seem intuitive, science now stands behind the idea that happier employees are more productive. A study by the University of Warwick showed that happier workers were 12% more productive. That’s like adding an extra day to the two-week pay period. So, now the question is, how do we improve employee satisfaction, without breaking the bank? Here are five easy ways to increase employee satisfaction – outside of giving a raise.
- Praise your employees’ hard work. In today’s busy work environments, it’s easy to overlook basics like a simple thank you for a job well-done. A few sincere words of praise let your employees know they are appreciated. Plus, who can argue with the $0 price tag?
- Provide a reward for above-average efforts. Incentives and rewards are common for employees in sales, but don’t forget the rest of your team. Small rewards like gift cards, a lunch out, or tickets to a sporting event can go a long way, without costing a fortune.
- Offer flexible work hours. This sends the message that you realize the importance of an employee’s outside life. Flexible work hours also make it easier for employees to avoid rush hour traffic, which is guaranteed to improve anyone’s outlook.
- Make your employees comfortable at work. Inexpensive things like free water, healthy snacks, and ergonomic chairs show your employees that you are interested in their comfort level. Here’s another novel idea: turn up the thermostat a degree or two in the summer months. You’ll save on cooling costs, and have fewer miserably cold employees.
- Communicate. Building a strong relationship with your employees ensures they will talk to you about any problems, leading to a faster resolution, and a speedier return to productivity. In addition to regular communication, it’s also a great idea to offer employees a suggestion box for making anonymous tips on improving the workplace. The cloak of anonymity gives employees the freedom to share honest opinions, without awkwardness or fear of retribution.
What does your business do to improve employee happiness? Share your tips and success stories in the comments.