Give Your Staff a Morale Boost!
It Only Takes 10 Minutes.
Usually, embarking on the ‘how to boost my staff’s morale’ quest is something that takes a lot longer than ten minutes. And in some ways, it has to. But there are a number of things you can do to boost staff morale today – right now.
Some of these things are so simple and natural that you might be surprised at the level of difference they can make. Others require some flexibility, some (dare we say it?) adventurousness on your part. And others rely on empathy, a word that doesn’t get used enough around the workplace.
Fun and Fast Ways to Boost Your Staff’s Morale
Fun isn’t something that we normally associate with work. Usually it’s ‘fun’ on one end of the spectrum and ‘work’ on the other, perilously close to ‘drudgery’. But fun can and should play a part in your workday. And we’re not just talking about fun team-building exercises or employee engagement events. We’re talking about every day fun. So how can you make that happen?
- Use fun activities in team meetings. Team meetings are like check-in points: Is everything on schedule? Is everyone doing what they are supposed to? Lighten up the atmosphere by adding some fun to the routine. Be imaginative. (And be kind: no poking fun at someone.)
- Take a chat break. Every day, make it a point to chat with some or all of your team – and not about work. Discuss football scores, TV shows, silly animal clips from YouTube, your Angry Birds troubles, etc., etc. Keep the atmosphere light. Even if you can’t leave the office physically, it’s a nice mental break.
- Make Five for Fun a Rule. During busy times, it’s easy to let the fun slide in favor of max productivity. Not so fast. We suggest instituting Five for Fun: have a quick five-minute break for some kind of fun activity. Research shows, especially during busy times, by taking 5 minutes for fun you will actually be more productive and effective than if you hadn't.
How to Use Imagination and Empathy to Boost Staff Morale
Some other quick morale-boosting activities may require a little thought on your part, but they are remarkably effective.
- Schedule time to talk to each employee about the challenges they face and how you can help.
- Give sincere and specific appreciation.
- Know what’s going on with your employees. Without being intrusive or creepy, show some interest in your team’s non-work lives. This is especially helpful if someone is facing an illness, going through a life change (positive or negative), or battling a blue mood. A little concern and empathy go a long way.
- Do something you don’t want to do. Rather than shove off an unpleasant, monotonous task onto somebody else, come on down off your ivory tower and do it yourself. Make those copies, deal with that demanding client, fill out those unending reports. Put yourself in the trenches too.
- If it’s a viable option, implement flex time, casual Fridays, work-from-home days, or some other work-life balancer.
- Communicate and update. Frequently. Daily if possible. A team kept in the loop is a happy team.
- Watch your own attitude. A bad attitude is so contagious it puts the common cold to shame. If you’re grumpy, bored, frustrated, or anxious, guess who will be joining you?
So, if you’ve been wondering how to boost your staff’s morale, start with yourself and work outwards. Can you be more understanding? More enthusiastic? Better organized and more communicative? You’re probably going to have to answer yes to at least one of those. Take ten minutes today and get started. Boosting staff morale is more about baby steps than grand gestures.