Everyone wants a quick fix these days – a faster plane ride, a simple weight loss plan, a better golf game. No matter the arena, we want things more rapidly than ever. When it comes to improving employee morale though, there’s no simple solution. But, with some well thought-out planning and sincere effort, you can stem the tide of mounting employee uneasiness and build employee loyalty.
While no single action is the cure, there as several key steps you can initiate in relatively quick order:
A. Address the Issue: Call a meeting, host a lunch or pull together a conference call. Let your team know that you can sense “a disturbance in the force.” Acknowledge that you’re aware of specific issues (name them) and that you’re doing something about it.
B. Give Them the Responsibility: Involve your team by soliciting suggestions on what can be done to make things better. No recommendation should be deemed “bad” or “wrong”; have them be as realistic as possible. You may need to give them time to consider options, but advocate for each of them to bring ideas to the table.
C. Create the Safety Zone: When moral goes south and problems resurface (which undoubtedly they will), let staff know how to address issues in the future and how feedback will be handled. When employees have faith that you’re getting ahead of future unidentified issues, the more likely they will actively participate in morale-building activities .
D. Share Incentives: It has worked since childhood and it’s a proven path for even the most senior of staff. Identify employee incentives (perhaps from their suggestions) that they will be presented with when conditions improve for the better. (I’d be remiss if I didn’t showcase Restaurant.com Gift Certificates as a leading option.
E. Offer Skill Building: Lastly, if you’ve got funding, invest in your team to help them conduct their responsibilities more effectively. Allowing their participation in seminars, conferences and conventions illustrate your commitment to them, which will fortify their professional conviction.
Give morale time to improve and trust your employees enough to be part of the solution. Changing the vibe in your workplace isn’t a pipedream. Growing hair overnight? Dream on!