The average American employee spends approximately nine hours at work each day, and the environment in which they work has a huge impact on their productivity, creativity, and intelligence, as well as how happy they are and whether they are likely to suffer signs of stress, anxiety, and depression.
That’s why it is so important that, if you are an employer, you work hard to give your employees the best possible working environment possible. It won’t just help your employees – it’ll do wonders for your business too when you see productivity levels soar and sick days fall.
So, what exactly can you do to create a happy working environment? Any of the suggestions below would certainly be a good start…
#1 Offer Healthy Choices
If you want your employees to be fit and healthy and have fewer sick days, one of the simplest things you can do is to make it easy for them to make healthy choices by, for example, removing a lot of the junk food from vending machines and canteens and replacing them with healthier fruits, vegetables, and water.
You may also want to offer subsidized gym memberships or office-based yoga classes and things like that which will encourage them to stay healthy.
#2 Make the Outdoors More Accessible
Spending 9 hours a day in an office can really suck the life out of people. As humans, we have a deep-seated connection with nature and it is a connection that we need to revisit regularly if we are to be as happy and stress-free as possible.
It makes sense, then, to invest in green space with park benches and picnic tables, where your employees can go for breaks or to eat their lunch and get some fresh air at the same time. It will boost their productivity and bring down their stress levels no end.
If you don’t have any outdoor space to do this, could you turn the roof into a garden? If not, then at least encourage your staff to go for walks on their breaks – don’t be tempted to chain them to their desks.
#3 Ensure Optimum Conditions
Your office should be light, ventilated and warm or cool depending on the outside temperature at all times. It would also be a good idea to have plants and flowers that boost the spirits and promote a sense of calm on every desk.
All of these things will influence how well your employees feel and they could be the difference between them getting sick and feeling down and them being healthy and happy and staying at work.
#4 Ergonomic Furniture is Important
On a similar note, you should always seek to install ergonomic furniture and equipment on your business premises if possible. Why?
Quite simply because they help to prevent injuries like back pain and repetitive strain injury which can make your staff unhappy and put them out of action for prolonged periods of time.
#5 Go Open Plan
It isn’t always possible, but where you can layout your office so that it is open plan, it is probably a good idea to do so because it opens up space and makes your employees feel less stifled than they do when they’re each confined to their own tiny cubicle.
It also allows staff to better communicate with each other, which is good for their wellbeing and for fostering greater levels of creativity via idea exchange.
#6 Make Time for Team Building
A lot of people roll their eyes at team building but when it’s done right it is a great way to improve the social relationships between your employees and work out what everyone’s strengths and weaknesses are so that they can be given the most optimum tasks and supported in achieving greatness.
It doesn’t have to be anything too silly either – simply going out for staff lunches on a regular basis can be all it takes to build stronger relationships and improve happiness levels all around.
#7 Encourage Personal Development
Helping your employees to reach their full potential is your duty as a business owner. No one feels happy in their work when they feel like they are undervalued and they have no place to go.
So, offering them courses and personal development days that will allow them to potentially climb the corporate ladder is a must.
#8 Create a Relaxing Space
If you can, creating a staff room that is relaxing and filled with lots of comfy furniture, plants, a TV, perhaps even a games console is a great way of helping your employees to unwind and catch their breath in their spare moments.
Happy employees make for a better business, so get to work and create an environment that fosters health and happiness today.
What tips can you share about creating a great work environment for your employees?