Updated: May 23, 2022
What is your workplace like…?
I bet your mind instantly came up with a few choice words.
Wonderful, & friendly, might’ve been some words that came to mind, or maybe you thought about it being stressful, & chaotic.
What about, productive, cohesive, efficient, trusting ,or encouraging?
The difference between a great place to work and a not so great place to work doesn’t have to seem like a gigantic mountain.
Here are 5 quick tips for developing your workplace into a positive atmosphere.
Understand how decisions are made in the workplace and how they affect others. For instance, if decisions are made based on the need to be popular they may look great in the beginning but not do so well overall. As a leader it’s important to see the bigger picture and what’s best for the good of the company. It may be hard to shake off the need to be popular but try digging deeper and understanding where that need is coming from. When leaders are in a position of authority they sometimes have to sacrifice popularity for the greater good.
When you are communicating with your team, how do you interact with them? Are you a bulldozer steam rolling everything and everyone? Or are you talking 90 miles and hour in a very technical way. When giving directions it’s important to make sure you can talk in an assertive, clear and concise way. It’s very easy to get wrapped up in technical jargon, but as leaders we need to think that every person in the room may not understand it all. When you hear the word “assertive” it does not mean to be domineering and overpowering but direct and clearly understood.
How does your team know they’re appreciated? Do you give feedback in a positive way, are other people’s ideas celebrated? When people are a part of a team, being appreciated goes a long way to helping keep a positive environment. Think about if you were constantly told “ your ideas needed to be improved” would you want to continue to share? What if instead of your boss telling you “ wow, great job, thanks for getting that report in so quickly and accurately” your boss just said “Next time could you add more information to page 3.” You might feel anger and resentment towards your boss instead of being happy to be a part of the team.
A tough part of being a leader is holding others accountable. When members of a team are equally held accountable the team has a sense of cohesiveness. Each person knows that they are being treated the same as their counterparts and one person isn’t getting special treatment when they don’t do their part. Holding your team accountable may be difficult when you have a strong desire to be liked or you have friends on your team. But as a leader holding each person accountable for their own responsibility will continue to keep your team productive and not allow irritation to grow.
Are you the type of leader who sets the example, or do you ask your team to be there at 9 am but you consistently show up at 9:15am? Perks of being a leader right? When the leader models the behavior that's expected of the staff no one feels like you are above the law of the office. But if you are the type of leader who doesn’t stick to the rules and policies that have been set, you will start to see bitterness in your team. Sometimes as leaders we often think that tasks are below us, but as a leader you should be the first to step up and do a task that no one wants to do. It will allow others to see you as one of them and they will continue to want to work with you and not just for you.
At the end of the day, employees want to come into a place they feel safe, appreciated, and valued. The job market is competitive and you've spent a lot of time and money to bring your current staff in. Now it's time to invest in them. Think about small ways you can implement a few strategies to improve your workplace environment. The changes don't have to be big grand overtures, that seem overwhelming to take on. But each day think about one way you can be appreciative, encouraging and you'll start to notice subtle positive changes at work.