A little kindness and a good bond with colleagues go a long way to improve the workplace.
Work stress has increased over time. With the world dynamics changing and every company racing to stay in the game, employees succumb to workplace pressure. Research suggests that 80 percent of workers are stressed on the job and half of them say they need help managing their stress.
It is up to organizations to create an environment that is peaceful and relaxed. Employees should not be pressured over work-related matters and should be given enough liberty to complete their tasks at their own pace. To ensure an environment where sanity prevails and employees are satisfied and happy, employers must ensure that employees have connections with each other and are practicing compassion and empathy.
Here are some simple strategies that organizations can implement to make sure the workplace environment is one where kindness is practiced and every employee has a bond.
Instill Gratitude in Your Employees
Many people argue that gratitude is a habit, not a trait that can be learned; however, when individuals are surrounded by people who practice gratitude, they are bound to learn to instill it as a habit of their own.
There is no hard and fast rule to show gratitude. A great way to introduce gratitude as your business culture is the traditional thank-you card. Thank your employees when their actions benefit the company even in the smallest way. Physical cards and notes can be sent to employees working in a typical office setting. You can send a thank you email or design a customized thank you note for remote workers.
Regardless of how you show gratitude or the type of team you are dealing with, make sure that gratitude is passed on to all workers and that they spread it to their co-workers. You will experience positive results when workers show gratitude towards one another.
Recognize and Appreciate Your Workers
When businesses do not spend time appreciating and recognizing their workers, employees develop a negative attitude which then reflects in their work. To minimize such impacts, make sure to show appreciate to your employees often. Tell them when they helped the company achieve its goals or when they helped grab a huge project for the company, etc. Appreciating employees does not necessarily mean a monetary increase, but recognizing them for their efforts goes a long way.
Once employees feel appreciated and valued, they put more effort into their work which leads to lower work stress levels. They do not feel that they are over-burdened and hence perform better.
Random Acts of Kindness
Random acts of kindness are a great way to boost kindness and connection at your workplace. Introduce a culture where every employee must commit to at least one random act of kindness. These could be as small as holding the door for a colleague, saying something nice to an unknown peer, sharing light-hearted messages/memes, etc. Doing this will help bring about kindness in your workplace culture.
Acts of kindness with strangers are a strong way of building connections in the workplace. When an employee helps another employee with whom he/she is unfamiliar, it creates a strong bond that lasts. Moreover, such acts help the company achieve its goal of instilling kindness.
Care for Your Employees
Caring for your employees is another great way of practicing kindness and enhancing connection. You can introduce free healthy lunch snacks for your employees to show that you care about their health. This will also give them a chance to bond with their colleagues, hence encouraging employee connections. Once employees create a bond, they work as a team which helps the company achieve new heights.
Another way to care for your employees is by supporting them during difficult times. Be it work-related or personal, when an employee is cared for in tough times it develops a connection with their co-workers and the company. Moreover, the employee understands that the company and their peers are compassionate towards him and will stand by him.
Break Traditional Barriers
Breaking the traditional leader-employee barrier is a great way to bring kindness and connection to your workplace. Let your employees create a bond with you like just another colleague instead of just following your orders. Bond with your team and treat them as your equals. When you treat your employees like your equivalent, they are more likely to respond positively. Be kind, tell them what needs to be done and keep a smooth follow-up with them. If any of your employees cannot meet the deadline, give them additional time to get the task done. An extra day or two will harm no one.
Additionally, move out of the traditional working practices. Get rid of unnecessary meetings; replace them with emails or messages. Make use of smart tools that will help you get the task done. Make changes that help you get the job done smarter, not harder. Bring everyone on board and make sure that all employees are aware of the changes.
Hear Your Employees
Hearing your employees is one of the best ways of encouraging connection in the workplace. When employees know that they are heard, they do not hold back and offer their ideas. Companies should make sure that they not only hear their employees but also look into what they need. If they suggest an improvement or a change, you should make sure the suggestion is considered and the change is implemented if possible.
Communicate with your employees. Tell them where they are lacking and what aspects they need to focus on. When they know they are understood, they will strive to overcome their weak points and make every effort to help the company succeed.