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Posted by & filed under Careers and Beyond.

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Sometimes in life, it’s the little things that matter; the same is often true in the workplace. The fleeting moments of recognition, company outings, lunch breaks at the local restaurant and other policies that make a company feel more like a home are intrinsic to employee motivation and happiness. While these five morale boosters won’t be an immediate answer to a business’s every problem, they will help to encourage a team atmosphere and a culture of collaboration.

1) Take lunch breaks seriously

While working consistently throughout the day may be necessary at busy periods in the life of a business, employee wind-down time is an opportunity to refresh and reflect. Research suggests that only one in five people take lunch breaks and that white-collar workers are least likely to step away from their desks for a break. Managers should use lunch breaks to refresh their employees, encouraging communal dining with an open lunch room or asking if anyone in the office wants to go for a coffee. Get outside the office or create a space inside to boost creativity and relaxation. For instance, low-cost games (such as ping pong tables, board games etc.) allow employees to engage different parts of their brain. Staff lunch initiatives could also be used to increase morale, such as the company buying the lunch for the office once a month.

2) Professional development scheme

Useful in both aiding recruitment and increasing morale, fostering a culture of professional development allows employees to work in a mutually beneficial fashion, both for themselves and the business. A number of banking chains across the UK encourage staff to manage their own personal development plan (PDP) while certain professions (such as accounting) see continued professional development (CPD) as a necessity to keep on top of policy changes and other evolving areas of the sector. Giving employees time to focus on a research project or initiative of their own every month shows a company’s support for their employees, thus boosting morale. Other personal development initiatives could include a tuition scheme. A business running a tuition scheme would give an employee part payment of the tuition fee cost of a course as long as the employee is studying a subject aligned with the business; this results in a more motivated, more educated pool of staff.

3) Offer perks that are tailored to staff needs

While we might hear about some of the amazing perks multinational companies give their employees (Google provides onsite medical staff while Campbell provides child care and onsite fitness services), for most businesses these kinds of perks aren’t cost effective. In the case of young or maturing businesses, it’s better to tailor workplace benefits to what would help the majority of the staff. For instance, if the office is difficult to commute to, it would benefit employees to be able to dictate their own working hours. If the nature of a business calls for longer or later hours, an inexpensive nap room could be an ideal place for employees to catch up on sleep and recharge. These low-cost solutions show that a business is sensitive to the needs of its employees.

4) Deliver wholeheartedly on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

CSR is good for more than just corporate image, it can also be a gateway to better understand employees and make them proud of a company. In giving employees the opportunity to volunteer for a charitable organisation, businesses are upholding their CSR as well as providing managers with the perfect opportunity to connect with their employees.

5) Get on board with online education

Online learning allows employees to enhance their personal and professional development without interrupting their daily work schedule. Depending on the qualification, the lessons learnt through an online degree can flow directly into an individual’s profession or reinforce their years of experience to make them more eligible for in-house promotion and further study.

If you’d like to study our Management and Leadership degree (BA) or Management and Professional Accounting degree with Coventry University College Online, fill out our enquiry form or contact us via Whatsapp on +447493511472. Remember to ask your employer about tuition fee schemes or employee sponsorship!

Watch this space for part 2!


Image courtesy of Glen Wright.

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