At one point in your career, chances are, you’ve had to endure a horrible office environment; we’ve all been there. Where every day feels like it’s the worst day and you dread waking up and heading into work. The entire day goes by in super slow speed and you may have found yourself intensely staring at the clock, waiting for 5 o’clock to deliver your freedom.
Having low morale in your office will severely stunt your business’s ability to grow and will have a dramatic impact on your staff’s productivity levels. We’ve compiled the top 7 mistakes that kill employee morale so that you can quickly recognize behavior that keeps employees depressed and less engaged.
Mistakes that kill employee morale and how to avoid them
1. Overworking Your Staff
In order to be as productive as possible, your staff needs a healthy work-life balance. You as a business owner have a responsibility to make sure that your staff is not overworked and overly stressed. By not having sufficient staff to handle heavy workloads, you’re going to lead your team to occupational burnout aka job burnout.
In a recent Statista study, ‘More than one third of employees lose one hour or more per day in productivity, while almost one third miss between three and six days per year due to stress.”
2. Inexperienced Supervisors
One of the biggest employee morale killers is having a bad management team. In a recent survey, Gallup shared that 82% of the time, companies fail to hire a manager with the right talent for the job. This inability to properly hire supervisors and managers leads to 50% of U.S. workers quitting; citing poor management.
When putting a professional in a managerial position, you have to make certain that they’re properly trained for the position.
3. Unprofessional Attitudes
Your team should be encouraged to be friendly in a semi-casual office environment to foster great working relationships. However, you should be careful not to create an atmosphere that is so lax that it breeds unprofessional behavior. Office gossip, inappropriate humor and mixed signals can lead to a variety of long-term morale issues.
Lead by example and teach your staff what level of professionalism you expect. Create a clear line of what is acceptable and what will not be tolerated.
4. Micromanaging Your Staff
High on the list of mistakes that kill employee morale is micromanaging. According to Forbes Magazine, “Nearly 60% [of employees polled] said they had worked for a micromanager at some point in their career. Of that group, 55% said it decreased their productivity and 68% said it dampened their morale.”
Allow your employees to show you that they’re capable of doing the job they were hired to do. Focus on the bigger picture and empower your team to help put your plan into action.
5. Lack of Organization
While your staff doesn’t want to be micromanaged, they don’t want to feel lost without leadership either. Prepare clear policies and guidelines that each employee can turn to when they have a procedural question. Share your company’s goals with everyone and explain how each person contributes to the team’s efforts.
Don’t put extra stress on your employees by not giving them the structure they need to excel in their positions.
6. Withholding Raises and Promotions
Each staff member has their own idea of what they’re worth to your company. If they don’t feel like they’re being valued for their work, their morale will eventually be negatively affected. Yes, a person’s salary is their compensation for the work they perform. But when your employees go above and beyond their normal call of duty, they should be awarded accordingly.
Schedule employee evaluations frequently to discuss their job performance. Create incentive programs and allow your team to be personally involved in their career development.
7. Inadequate Tools or Atmosphere
A carpenter won’t be able to work without a tape measure and a receptionist can’t properly handle calls without a reliable phone system. When an employee doesn’t have the tools they need to complete their tasks they’ll feel defeated, insecure and anxious.
If you’re looking to improve your staff’s morale, it’s also suggested that you take a look at the office atmosphere you’ve created. Your employees want to feel inspired and comfortable in their workspace where they spend 40 or more hours a week. Does your office have adequate lighting? Do you keep your building temperature too cold? Too hot?
These details may seem trivial but not paying attention to your staff’s tools and office environment can lead to disengaged employees. In our recently published article, 10 (Nearly Free) Ways to Boost Morale in the Workplace, we reported that, “Engaged employees’ performance levels are 202% higher than disengaged employees.”
Be sure to rectify any inadequacies so that your staff can do their job in a comfortable environment with the necessary tools.
Make sure to avoid these mistakes that kill employee morale!
Your office morale affects more than the mood of your staff. Committing any of these 7 mistakes that kill employee morale will decrease your overall productivity, employee retention and will prevent your business from growing.
If you’d like to get some creative ideas on how to improve your office morale, read our popular article, 50 Simple Ways to Boost Morale in the Workplace.
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