8 Steps to Create a Positive and Healthy Workplace for Your Employees During and After COVID-19 Pandemic
Whether it’s because of generous compensation, location, or flexibility, employees stay in a company for many reasons. One of the primary reasons that make them stay longer and enjoy their job is the company culture, which includes the organization’s values, ethics, business goals, and work environment.
Company culture matters because employees tend to enjoy their job more when their goals, needs, and values match with the organization. Especially during a global health crisis. Their employer’s management style and workplace habits greatly affect their performance, productivity, and relationships within the company.
Why a Healthy Work Environment is Important
When an employee finds that their principles and work habits don’t fit with the organization’s culture, they are likely to find work unsatisfying and less efficient. For instance, if an employee prefers a more collaborative and team-oriented environment, chances are they won’t perform well in a company that has a more traditional and formal management style.
This is the same with employers, too. When they find employees who fit with their culture, the business will boom because the people are driven, motivated, and productive at work. Indeed, culture impacts a company and serves as a competitive advantage.
Do you still need a little more convincing? Below are some interesting statistics that show the power of culture and work environment. These numbers should speak for themselves.
- In a survey of over 1,400 North American C-level executives, 90% said that culture was important in their companies, and more than 50% said that it affects productivity, creativity, profitability, firm value, and growth rates.
- About 89% of employees at companies that support wellness programs are likely to recommend their company as a good place to work.
- Organizations with satisfied employees surpassed their competitors by 20%.
- Workers’ overall ratings of their company’s qualities, such as collaboration, work environment, and mission and value alignment, are 20% higher at companies with solid and healthy cultures.
- Around 94% of executives and 88% of employees believe that having a clear workplace culture is vital for business success.
Whether you’re part of an in-house or remote team, it is always essential to establish a healthy company culture and positive work environment. This is how you can reduce turnover and keep them satisfied with their work. To help you, we’ve put together some tips on how you can create a positive workplace for your employees. Let’s dive into it!
8 Tips to Create a Positive and Healthy Work Environment After COVID-19 Pandemic
Tip #1: Encourage open communication
You have a lot of personalities working in your company, which means disagreements are inevitable. That’s why it’s important to promote open and honest communication practices to avoid or quickly resolve problems and other disputes.
A culture of open communication can also prevent employees from going behind another’s back as it fosters healthy confrontations and conflict resolution. When a company can handle such sticky situations, employees are likely to appreciate working in this environment.
Tip #2: Promote work-life balance
One way you can establish a healthy work environment for your employees is to encourage work-life balance. Work can be draining, especially when they’re required to do overtime to finish a task or project. Overworking can cause burnout and lead to a dip in productivity and work performance.
Some ways you can promote this is by offering your employees work-from-home perks, flexible working hours, generous sick leaves and vacation leaves, discounted gym memberships, at-work coffee machines, and more. When you help them balance their obligations and responsibilities, they can better deliver at work.
Tip #3: Implement wellness and cleanliness initiatives
Even before the pandemic, wellness and cleanliness have been overlooked in offices. But nowadays, they have become a priority. And will overtime be the norm. Employers are now beginning to implement programs to help alleviate the spread of the virus in the workplace.
You must promote these initiatives in your company, through social distancing measures, food hygiene, and physical exercise. For example, you can arrange bike racks to encourage employees to bike to work instead of using public transportation, organize daily misting in the office, distribute face masks, gloves, and other safety equipment, arrange a weekly or bi-weekly exercise program, or invite mindfulness specialists to conduct webinars to help manage with stress.
Tip #4: Create clean and comfortable spaces
Apart from workplace initiatives and policies, the design and layout of the office space are also vital since it’s the place where your employees spend most of their time. A clean, comfortable, and well-structured workspace where there are natural light and signs of life like plants helps build a healthy office.
In some way, these elements help rejuvenate distracted and stressed out employees. Moreover, pieces of furniture like standing desks and ergonomic chairs allow them to work however they want to. Spending nine or more hours a day sitting at work can cause discomfort and bad posture.
Tip #5: Recognize and reward good work
A simple thank-you note or email to acknowledge your team’s hard work can keep their spirits high and give a sense of pride in your employees. Employee reward and recognition also increases morale and productivity and keeps them engaged with the company despite being in the midst of a pandemic.
You can reward them with a free lunch, gift certificates, extra holidays, or monetary rewards. However, don’t feel too pressured and know that rewards don’t have to cost much. Cliché as it may sound, it’s the thought that counts. If you want your employees to stay in your organization longer, invest in them through rewards and recognition programs.
Tip #6: Host virtual team building events
Sitting in front of a screen or talking to customers all day long, day in and day out, can be tiresome and draining. You can bring teams closer together and make them more productive by hosting virtual team building activities.
Such activities can refresh and re-energize employees, making them ten times ready to take on tasks and projects. You can also conduct weekly team engagement activities to start building a positive workplace culture. Online games can help boost relationships and improve communication among team members.
Tip #7: Refrain from micromanaging
How would you feel if someone hovers over you while you work? Employees work best when they feel trusted, not when they’re always on a manager’s or boss’ radar. Contrary to your objectives, micromanaging can negatively impact their job performance, and worse, employees may start to resent their work.
It’s essential to give your employees the trust and sense of freedom they need to do their jobs. Set clear expectations and goals early on, so they’ll know what your expectations are of them. This can help them better contribute to your business growth and success. You can ask for updates and reports during your team meetings instead of being over their shoulders.
Tip #8: Get to know your employees
Although this should be a no-brainer, many managers are hesitant and fail to see the value of having meaningful conversations with their employees because they don’t want to “cross the line” and seem unprofessional.
However, getting to know the people in your company is the key to creating a healthy workplace and work culture. Employees appreciate it when they can approach their managers easily and when they feel included in the company.
A Healthy Work Culture Means Happy Employees
A healthy corporate culture is crucial for the employees to flourish and the company to thrive. Luckily, creating this kind of environment isn’t hard and doesn’t cost much. Small changes, like the tips above, can make a significant impact and bring positive results in a flash, especially when employees are anxious of their future in the company because of the pandemic.