The Importance and Impact of Employee Morale
Unlike sales numbers and similar work metrics, morale can be difficult to gauge, and yet it is an indispensable factor for a company to maintain a healthy, loyal, and productive workforce. Simply put, employee morale refers to the overall attitude and satisfaction that employees have towards their work. Employees with high morale are more productive, proactive, healthy, and loyal. Consequently, low morale can manifest in a lot of ways that can negatively impact the workplace by lowering productivity and performance, increased probability of workplace disputes and quarrels, and higher turnover which can affect the company as a whole.
Ways to Boost and Maintain Morale
As such, companies need to improve and maintain employee morale, and we’ll be discussing a few effective ways to help you accomplish this goal:
The mere act of proactively asking employees about their job satisfaction and well-being, and hearing out their suggestions on how to improve the workplace can already have a positive effect on morale as it lets them know that they have a voice in the company and that the company genuinely cares about them. There are many ways that you can go about in asking for employee feedback about the workplace and what changes should be made to improve morale (among other issues). A practical method would be through a survey (through email or paper) that not only gauges employee morale but also allows them to provide feedback and recommendations anonymously. Alternatively, you can also go include employee feedback during one-on-one coaching sessions so that they won’t only be entirely about performance.
2 Recognize and/or Reward Milestones and Achievements
Never underestimate the power of recognition. A high-performing employee may end up settling for meeting the minimum targets if the company doesn’t properly acknowledge their hard work. As such, supervisors need to take note of their staff’s performance and find a way to acknowledge them. This can be done through awarding events that identify top-performing employees or can be as simple as having an employee-of-the-month thing going on at the office. You can even go further by providing rewards or incentives to these employees in the form of financial gifts or even through simple gift cards. You should also recognise work anniversaries and similar milestones to celebrate your tenured employees.
3 Extra and Exclusive Benefits
Most workplaces already provide their employees with necessary work benefits such as health insurance, retirement savings plans, and so on. However, you can go the extra mile by providing your employee with exclusive benefits through employee discounts programs and similar employee benefits packages outside of the basic ones that your company already provides.
4 Career and Educational Advancement Opportunities
The thought of being stagnant or the prospect of doing the same job forever can significantly affect morale. As such, your employees must be aware that they have the opportunity to further their careers or even education within the company. Let your workforce know that, through hard work, they can advance their careers, or even take advantage of sponsorship programs that let them continue their education to develop their skills and ‘market value’.
Employee morale plays a huge role in every workplace; even well-compensated/high-salary employees are more likely to cease performing or even quit their jobs if their morale isn’t kept in check. So make sure that your managers and supervisors don’t only focus on the numbers, but also pay attention to their staff’s attitude and outlook.And lastly, you need to remember that maintaining morale is an ongoing process, so providing one-time interventions are only as good as band-aids, and adapting morale-boosting activities, such as those stated above, can go a long way in boosting and maintain your entire workforce’s morale.