It is the managers job to get the best out of their employees. Employees have the skills to perform their jobs, but it is up to the manager to allow their workforce to operate in a way that ensures the highest quality of work is being produced. Therefore, the comfort and well-being within the workforce should be of great concern to any manager. Happy employees make for good work and in most cases, what makes employees happy doesn’t conflict with running an effective workplace. A friendly and warm working environment can make all the difference to an employee. Working in a place where they feel welcome and respected allows them to just focus on their work and motivates them to produce good work. So if you’re a manager looking to create a friendly work environment where your employees can thrive, here are some tips to help you.
Respect, first and foremost.
The easiest thing you to curate a friendly work environment is promote respect between everyone who works there. In any office, there can be a lot of different personalities, some of which will clash with others. The occasional conflict is bound to come up, but what helps you avoid letting those differences become toxic is by showing respect for everyone. Value different opinions without dismissing them outright. If you start to think negative thoughts about people in the office, or allow negativity to grow between employees, then each interaction will first have to overcome that negativity and that can be difficult. Respect the people in your office and help them to respect each other.
Along the same lines of respect, open communication leads to a happier work environment. We don’t need to once again state the great importance of communication within the workplace (even though it really can’t be overstated), but it is especially relevant to how your workforce feels valued. When they bring up an issue, a question, or an idea, you owe it to them to listen. You might not agree with them, but understand their position, discuss it with them and leave them feeling like they were heard. When employees are missing this quality at work, they feel as though they are an undervalued part of the operation.
Invest personal interests.
Some managers maintain that it is a bad idea to form friendships or personal connections to their employees. To them I say this; grow up. If you can’t balance having a decent and reciprocal relationship with someone while keeping up your professional duties, then maybe you shouldn’t be a manager. A real effective manager gets to know their employees. They learn about their families, their life outside of work, their background, their interests. This kind of knowledge is not just being a decent person, but it makes employees feel as though they are a part of something instead of just a worker drone.
Be positive, even in the tougher situations.
Positivity can be hard for some people but it is a quality that is essential for managers. Whether it is fair or not, and whether it is blatant or not, employees often look to managers as the example of the established attitude of the office. Of course, a positive attitude is the preferable route to take, but that goes beyond saying good morning to everyone at the start of a new day. Every office has difficult situations they have to deal with, and staying positive in these situations can be a little more difficult. Positivity doesn’t mean turning a blind eye to real issues, but rather that you don’t allow the negativity to cloud the bright aspects of the workplace.
Above all else, you employees want to know that their work is being valued. As a manager, your job is to be aware of the work your employees are doing and provide them with the appropriate feedback. When giving feedback, many of the qualities we’ve discussed above come into play. You have to be respectful of their work, listen to their reasoning for their approach, be positive about going forward. And when someone is doing a good job, go out of your way to acknowledge it and show them that their hard work it noted and appreciated.