Leaders are often so occupied with big ideas, that they tend to lose focus of the small things that actually matter to the people in their organisation. But these small things can go a long way when it comes to how your people feel when they wake up every morning, fire up their computers, or head out for the office. Here are 21 things you can do to leave a lasting impact on your people.
#1: Make your employees’ schedules more predictable and less erratic
Because unpredictable schedules make it more difficult for your employees to plan their personal lives and responsibilities, and worsen their sleep quality.
#2: Encourage your coworkers, leaders, and employees to be vulnerable
And that starts with you. When you feel comfortable enough to show your vulnerabilities to people, others will too. This creates more meaningful bonds between leaders and their teams, and amongst coworkers.
#3: Give employees more control over workplace policies and design
Encourage them to bring a plant from outside to their desks, if they feel so. Ask them if they like the lighting at the newly designed workplace. Ensure that they can openly voice out their frustration with a new tool that you have adopted.
#4: Ask your leaders to show concern towards your employees’ personal needs
Nudge them towards family supportive behaviours. This way, your employees will no longer need to lie about the leave that they took for their kid’s or spouse’ birthday – to you, or to their coworkers.
#5: Start spontaneous conversations with your people at your workplace
If you are passing by someone’s desk, ask them as to what’s troubling them at work. What can you do to make their workday easier for them? Such conversations enable you to put a human front to your employees.
#6: Hold open office days and encourage employees to bring their friends and family
This is a great way to learn if your employees feel proud of their workplace, their teammates, and their organisation’s culture. In addition, it also enables your people to bond in a different context.
#7: Have an unprecedented early-finish Thursday or Friday to extend the weekend
Some of your employees may find it very difficult to concentrate on work when they have an exciting weekend planned ahead. Bring them closer to their plans by calling it a day earlier.
#8: Screen a major sporting event at the workplace (and don’t forget the pizzas)
This way, your employees won’t be watching the snippets secretly on their phone screens while stressing about their tasks. Encourage them to watch as a team, and use it as a way to foster social bonds.
#9: Offer your employees to work on a project that they would like to be a part of
Even if, only for a part of their work week. This is a great way to build cross-functional teams, while giving your employees more control over how they work and contribute to the organisation.
#10: Schedule organisation-wide coffee breaks, and encourage remote employees to drop in too
This is an easy, yet powerful way to build cohesion amongst hybrid teams. In addition to offering time off, it might also make remote workers want to come to the office, or in-office employees to take a remote day.
#11: Don’t take employee engagement as yet another task. Make it fun
If it feels like a task for you, it most probably does for everyone else too. Using more workplace-friendly tools like HROne can help you make engagement more fun, and leave a lasting impact on your workplace culture.
#12: Hold happy days and bring therapy dogs to your workplace
This is one of the easiest ways to de-stress your employees, and to put a smile on their face. If you can’t find a therapy dog, encourage your employees to bring their well-behaved pets to the workplace on select days.
#13: Hold virtual games sessions for both remote and in-office employees
Your in-office employees may have access to a break room, but what about your remote teams? Ask them to drop in for some fun and easy online games that will de-stress them and improve their happiness levels.
#14: Make sure that your employees are laughing every now and then
If they are not, they are probably stressed, or they are unable to open up. However, make sure that your employees don’t laugh at the expense of others. Encourage sensitive humour that doesn’t offend anyone.
#15: Show your employees that you care about their mental well-being
Offer rewards and benefits that encourage your employees to plug off, or provide counselling sessions at the workplace. But more importantly, tell your people to use these services – that way, they’ll know that you care about them too.
#16: Evangelise digitally healthy healthy habits to promote well-being
Encourage your organisation to move away from bad email etiquettes, intrusive digital behaviours, or unhealthy levels of screen time. This goes a long way in reducing stress levels.
#17: Use positive reinforcement techniques to promote desirable behaviours
Nobody likes to be told no. But positive reinforcement enables you to fine-tune your organisation’s culture with a lead-by-example ideology. Appraise people who exhibit inclusive behaviours and turn them into cultural ambassadors.
#18: Incentivize physical fitness both at and outside work
Encourage your employees to stay mobile at work (standing desks or treadmill desks may be a good idea to explore), and tie up with gyms to offer memberships to employees at discounted rates. You could even set up a leaderboard to track the number of steps that your people took over a week.
#19: Eliminate hierarchy where it is not welcome or needed
While it is a bad idea for anyone to show their people that they are above them in any way, hierarchy may get established in miniscule things like reserved parking spaces, or major differences in employees’ workspaces.
#20: Say thank you!, well done! and good job! more often
It not only makes employees feel valued, but it also makes them feel seen and heard. Digital HR platforms like HROne, which offer excellent employee appraisal capabilities can significantly elevate the outcome of your employee recognition efforts.
And that’s why asking your employees every now and then as to what they would like to see improved or changed – and then acting on them can help you build trust, and leave a lasting impact on your people.