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Deadlines, compliance, changing customer demands, new technology and competitors are just a few of the many things that a company manager has to deal with. It is little wonder that the needs of the staff are often overlooked. If everyone has turned up from work and appears to be busy, just let them get on with it.

The challenge is that your staff are your greatest asset. If they are happy, positive and motivated, they are far more likely to be productive, innovative and loyal. If they enjoy being part of your team, they will speak favourably about your company to others and help to market what you have to offer. They will actively contribute to discussions and help to drive the business forward.

Workplace Culture

In order to create a positive work environment, you need to establish an employee focused workplace culture. This could include ditching the age old job descriptions and recruiting employees with the skills and strengths that you need to complete your team and work towards the company goals.

Flexible Working

An effective workplace culture provides individuals with flexible working options that allow them to fulfil other commitments outside of the workplace. This could be caring for others, undertaking an evening course, voluntary work or even working from home when an important delivery is due. With a bit of give on your side, you’ll see employees more willing to help out when a big order comes in, or a customer needs assistance.

Communication

Communication is at the heart of a strong business. Managers often see informal chat as a distraction and there are plenty of jokes about the conversations being had around the water dispenser. In reality, informal conversations can have many benefits. It can build trust, establish shared interests and make everyone more approachable. This reaps rewards when employees need to work collaboratively, contribute to team activities or share ideas.

Water Dispenser Chats

The water dispenser chats are also a good way to take a break from the desk, let off a bit of steam and get everything back in perspective. In a sense it offers a small dose of stress release, which can help individuals to return to their desk refreshed and ready to be productive.

Not only that, but the water itself helps to keep them healthy, hydrated and functioning at their best. If you have yet to install a water dispenser, High Wycombe and surrounding areas are served by Chiltern Hygiene.

Another important factor when it comes to communication is listening. If you are occasionally positioned at the water dispenser, it can be an informal way of getting to know your employees better, asking open questions and listening to their replies. This could result in a gem of an idea being shared.

Appreciation

Appreciation also contributes to a positive workplace culture. Get to know what every member of the team is doing to ensure the success of your business. Are they diplomatic when dealing with customer complaints or highly professional when delivering a presentation? Do they ensure all the bills and invoices are paid on time or have they just secured a dream order? By recognising and openly thanking individuals for their contribution, you’ll help to build a happy work environment.

Taking Action

Equally, it is important to effectively deal with individuals who aren’t contributing, are causing friction within the team, or are spending too much time on ‘friendly chat’. A respectful, trusting workforce needs everyone to pull their weight.

Cost Effective Solutions

The common factor in all of the points mentioned above is that it requires minimal financial investment in order to build a positive workplace culture. These all focus on being a fair and decent human and treating others as fair and decent humans too. The good news is that it spreads, so you’ll see the same approach adopted when dealing with each other, the customers and suppliers.