Today’s economy isn’t just frustrating for those without jobs – limited budgets can do a number on employed workers’ morale as well. Exemplary employees might not be awarded with raises, no matter how much effort they put into their projects. Employers unable to afford larger salaries may find their best employees looking elsewhere.
But some companies are finding way to keep employees happy by cultivating employee-friendly office cultures. For example, in the fall of 2010, Washington, D.C.’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer implemented a Results Only Work Policy (ROWE), which pays employees for results, not the hours that they work. This means that employees are able to work when or wherever they want, so long as their work gets done. In places where it has been tried, ROWE not only boosts morale and retention, but also improves output.
Of course, not every company is willing to redo its entire work structure. That doesn’t mean that they can’t find less drastic ways to boost morale. Here are some of the many ways that companies can make the workplace more attractive for employees:
• Acknowledge employees’ contributions. Employees who work hard without recognition are likely to lose morale. Even if a company can’t provide raises, it can award employees’ efforts. For example, managers can give out certificates or plaques acknowledging an employee’s accomplishments or designating an employee of the month.
Plaquemaker Plus, a company that offers many personalized trophies, plaques and frames, offers laser-engraved that can be used to give hard-working employees a boost. Visit their website at www.PlaquemakerPlus.com or call 1-800-367-5556.
• Celebrate birthdays. Acknowledging employees’ personal lives will make them feel like valuable team members, rather than a replaceable automatons.
• Communicate. Unhappy employees are less productive, so managers should take time to speak with them about their questions or concerns. An anonymous employee-satisfaction survey can also help employers determine where they need improvement.