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6 Ways to Ensure You Prioritize Employee Happiness
Featured Best Practice on HR Strategy
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If the Great Resignation taught employers anything, it was that they must prioritize employee happiness. Retaining your best workers saves you money, time and ensures your brand has continuity from one season to the next.
How can a small business compete with mega corporations, though? After all, they can typically offer higher wages, more benefits and other perks you may be unable to provide and still make a profit.
How Do You Monitor Employee Happiness?
Gallup’s State of the Global Workforce Report found many people aren’t happy in their current jobs. Around 60% of people said they are emotionally detached and another 19% claimed to be “miserable.” A mere 33% felt engaged, which is a drop from the previous report.
At least half of all workers in the United States say they are stressed at their jobs every day. It’s no wonder more people are focusing on a better work-life balance and resigning in record numbers.
How can companies retain workers and ensure they remain happy enough to stay on? Here are some of the best ways to ensure you prioritize employee happiness.
1. Assess Where You Are
Start by figuring out just how happy or miserable your employees are. Ask them to turn in anonymous surveys, talk to department heads and create an open line of communication where staff feels they can speak up about things concerning them without fear of repercussion.
Have one-on-one conversations with your staff. Take them to lunch and ask for their input. Figure out what you need to do to create higher job satisfaction.
2. Celebrate Their Hard Work
If you don’t host at least one party a year for your employees, you may be missing out on an opportunity to show them how much you appreciate their effort. Host a family picnic where you rent tents, serve dinner and pass out awards. You can even host the event on company property to show off your building, a new landscaping venture or set the tone for the coming year.
Start your own awards ceremony. Make it serious or light-hearted. Cater in a fabulous dinner and pay a DJ or other entertainment. Let your employees bring a guest. Recognize the unique gifts each person brings to your company.
3. Offer Unique Perks
Think outside the box. You might not have the funds to give employees six months of paid maternity leave, but maybe you could institute a work-share program or bring your child or puppy to work with you plan.
Some companies offer a travel stipend. Others give paid days off to volunteer for the nonprofit organization of your choosing. There are many different things you can offer that keep your workers happy and show them you care about their well-being.
4. Work on Company Culture
What is your company culture like? Do people wake up Monday morning excited to go to work and interact with others? If anyone dreads the end of the weekend, you aren’t doing things right and you need to make adjustments.
Ask your current employees what they’d like to see change. Implement regular meetings to see how you’re doing with employee satisfaction rates. Create a no tolerance policy for bullying. Encourage people to communicate. Recognize effort as well as success. Make your company a place you’d love to work.
Understand company culture starts at the top and works its way down the ranks in your company. Train your leaders to motivate and encourage and watch how the entire attitude of your business changes. A good book to have everyone read is “The Energy Bus.”
5. Let Them Go Remote
Experts predict around 25% of all jobs will be remote by the end of 2023. You likely already have people working at home at least part of the time. One reason people cite for leaving their current positions is a desire to work remotely. They either strike out on their own as small business owners or seek out employment with another company.
Allowing your workers to do their tasks at home doesn’t require a lot of setup. You can go through third-party providers to set up a network that allows them to login and do their work.
6. Give Raises
Struggling companies may be tempted to freeze all raises and not give anyone an increase in pay. However, this is a certain way to lose your top workers. As the cost of living rises, employees at least have to keep up to maintain their standard of living. If you don’t give them a raise, they’ll seek other employment and get the raise through higher pay from a competitor.
You can get creative with your packages, offering a small raise and extra paid days off or other perks to spread out the cost a bit.
Ask Your Workers What They Want
One of the best ways to keep your employees happy is to ask them what will make them so. Talk to them about what perks they want, if their benefits are sufficient and how their work-life balance is. Pull them into your office and offer feedback about how they’re doing or training for areas where you see them excelling and want them to develop further skills.
When you keep the lines of communication open, you will know when a worker isn’t happy. Hopefully you can take steps to fix any issues before they become departing former employees. Keeping your workers happy often requires putting their needs first and seeking solutions to any problems together.
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The purpose of Human Resources (HR) is to ensure our organization achieves success through our people. Without the right people in place—at all levels of the organization—we will never be able to execute our Strategy effectively.
This begs the question: Does your organization view HR as a support function or a strategic one? Research shows leading organizations leverage HR as a strategic function, one that both supports and drives the organization's Strategy. In fact, having strong HRM capabilities is a source of Competitive Advantage.
This has never been more true than right now in the Digital Age, as organizations must compete for specialized talent to drive forward their Digital Transformation Strategies. Beyond just hiring and selection, HR also plays the critical role in retaining talent—by keeping people engaged, motivated, and happy.
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About Eleanor HecksEleanor Hecks is the editor-in-chief of Designerly Magazine. She’s also a web design consultant with a focus on customer experience and UI. She lives in Philadelphia with her husband and pups, Bear and Lucy. Connect with her about marketing, design and/or tea on LinkedIn.
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