The Top 8 Ways to Build the Workplace of the Future
The modern workplace is changing rapidly. Gone are the days when employees stuck with the same employer for their entire careers. These days, employees are just as concerned with the organizational culture of a company as with the work it does, if not more so. In fact, many employees report that they would accept less pay if it meant working for a company that aligned with their goals and values. Read on for eight tips to help you turn your workplace into somewhere that employees actually want to be.
1. Listen to Your Employees
The best way to know what the top employees want out of their jobs is to ask them. Being actively involved with your employees and potential candidates gives you insight into what is important to them so that you can make changes accordingly.
2. Show the Bigger Picture
For many employees, particularly those in lower-ranked positions, it can often be difficult to see how their job matters to the company as a whole. Engaging in transparency at all levels helps employees to see the bigger picture of how their role fits in with the overall goals of the organization. It can be a huge boost to employee morale when they feel like what they are doing matters. It also helps to show them what their career path is likely to look like over the next one, three, five or even ten years.
3. Allow Time for Personal Development
Your employees’ schedules should allow time for growth and development, both in personal and professional pursuits. Your organization should give employees access to training and certification programs and should encourage them to participate.
4. Track Data
It can be difficult to gauge how changes to your organizational culture are performing if you don’t have a way of evaluating them. Employing a system of tracking and measurement can help you determine which efforts are successful and which are not.
5. Provide Detailed Feedback
Feedback is incredibly motivating to employees and shows them areas in which they are doing well and in which they need to improve. When providing negative feedback, be sure that it is constructive and not unnecessarily critical. The goal is to help your team improve, not to make them terrified of making a mistake. Don’t forget to offer praise when it is earned as well.
6. Allow for Work-Life Balance
The old saying that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy holds true more now than ever before. The Millennial workforce in particular prizes work-life balance very highly when it comes to choosing a place to work. Be sure that your employee benefit structure allows for ample vacation time and family/medical leave.
7. Define Your Organization’s Values
The easiest way to ensure that your organization attracts candidates who share the company’s values is to clearly identify those values in the first place. For example, if giving back to the community is an important part of your corporate philosophy, a candidate whose sole focus is on generating profits would likely not be a good fit. If you prize innovation and creativity, an applicant who prefers a highly structured work environment would not mesh well.
8. Support Autonomy
The wave of the future is towards giving employees more autonomy and flexibility while at work, rather than having constant supervision. This way, they are free to explore creative solutions and drive innovation. You may be surprised by some of the things they come up with when given a bit of freedom. Morale will be higher as well when employees have the confidence to take initiative.
While you may have to make a few changes to enhance your workplace, the effort is well worth it. Employees who feel valued are the ones that will produce the greatest value for your business. They are the ones who will ensure long-term growth.