The holidays are an important time of year for organizations to show their appreciation to their employees for all of the hard work that they have accomplished over the past year. It doesn’t have to be that “big bonus” or a “fancy party” – what really matters is getting the team together to celebrate. Everyone getting together on a Friday afternoon for a potluck lunch is more than enough.
You need to have the right group to be able to do this with. Which means, as a Leader, you need to create that perfect workplace environment. But how? It’s not always easy – it takes time and an authentic Leader – one who truly cares about their employees. This isn’t something that can be done in one afternoon; it’s something you work towards each and every day.
The worst nightmare for a Leader is to have a hard time keeping employees, resulting in a high turnover rate. Think about it, as a Leader it doesn’t look good when you continually have people quitting on you or even worse you have to fire them. As an employee, no one ever wants to work for an organization that has a high turnover rate; it’s a clear sign that something isn’t right. You know that espresso machine you have wanted to buy? Well would you consider purchasing it if most of the reviews were bad and previous customers would NOT recommend buying it? Most likely not.
So what does it take? What ingredients do you need in order to create the BEST workplace environment that your employees can not only thrive in, but they will never want to leave!
Here are 7 ingredients that you can easily mix into your workplace – our very own “Recipe for Success”.
Compassion – Let them know you care. A simple thank you for staying late or doing a good job when they nailed that presentation, lets them know that you are paying attention to them and that their hard work is not going unnoticed. Maybe the team landed a big client and to celebrate you could have a pizza lunch one day. It’s important to recognize employees on an individual level but also on a group level – everyone doing their part is what makes the organization function.
Communication – Everyone is aware of this one, but in reality does everyone do it? We tend to always communicate the good news and forget about the bad news. If an employee is not working to standards they need to know, otherwise how will they improve? Team meetings are a good way to make sure that everyone is current and up to date. However, when one person is in need of corrective feedback, you own it to him or her to provide it privately and in a respectful and timely fashion. If you don’t, their stress levels may arise and/or their performance may deteriorate to the point where you have to part ways. Sad for everyone.
Development – By offering professional development you are not only investing in your employees’ futures, you are investing in your company’s future. We’re not saying that you have to offer them university degrees, but online classes or an afternoon in the office with a trainer is more than enough. Check our Coursera for the world’s largest offering of no-cost online courses.
Advancement – It is important for employees to continuously grow and they need to know that they are not in a dead-end position with no way to move up the ladder. They need to be challenged or they will get bored and start looking elsewhere. Knowing that there is room for growth will help with motivation and drive to do the best job they can.
Understanding – Employers need to understand that their employees have lives too and don’t expect them to be on the clock 24/7. A lot of organizations have started to allow employees to work remotely in order to help with those family / personal needs. Over-working your employees will just lead to them feeling burnt-out and not performing to the best of their abilities. Encourage them to take days off, maybe even close up shop for a few days over the holidays to allow them some time to spend with friends and family. Everyone needs time to unwind and relax, especially Leaders, so take your own advice sometimes too!
Positivity – Always try to remain positive, especially when there is negativity around. Even when you have to give some bad news, throw some positivity in there too, for example, “Okay, so you didn’t meet your quota this month, what can we do to change that for next month?” Talk about goals and how you are there to offer support and help because you want to see your employees succeed.
Friendliness – You might be the Leader but that doesn’t mean you can’t be a friend as well. I’m not saying you have to be best friends, but ask your team members how their weekend was, how is little Johnny doing in school – show personal interest. Organize socials and have those Friday afternoon potlucks, and not just around the holidays – a “just because” or “just for fun” is a good enough reason!