Can the efficiency of a team be improved by creating a more pleasant working environment? The answer is yes!
Workplace happiness is based on several aspects and its perception may differ from one employee to another. A great leader, challenging projects, recognition and rewards, stability at work or a pleasant atmosphere, just to name a few, can play a different role and importance in each member’s mind.
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Organizing team building events
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Greeting the team
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Praise and give recognition when necessary
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Making work satisfactory
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Making work/life balance a priority
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Promoting well-being in the workplace
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Launch an individual development plan
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Use feedback as a mini-mentoring tool
- Improving the efficiency of a Team: Step out – from time to time – from the work routine
As a project manager, creating an environment that brings out the best in team members is key to the success of the organization.
In fact, research shows that decommitted employees have:
- 37% above average absenteeism,
- 49% more accidents,
- 60% more mistakes in work activities.
So it seems that not caring for the happiness of one’s employees can become costly. So let’s see what are the tips to improve the efficiency of the team by making the working environment pleasant.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Organizing team building events
Amusement leads to happiness.
Holding team building events where employees play together, laugh together and solve problems together contributes a lot to their happiness.
Team building events – if well planned – inspire people to stay in the workplace and even promote creativity.
Whether it’s an afternoon in an escape room or an adventure in the woods, team building events can be countless.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Greeting the team
It may seem like a small thing, but in reality, greeting employees means a lot in the workplace.
Team members want to feel regarded, so the manager can give them a little positive boost in the morning, greeting them warmly with a smile or a pat on the back.
Also, asking the team how the weekend or a particular event went helps a lot to deepen the bond and makes the work environment more “familiar”.
A project manager with an optimistic and genuine approach increases the team’s self-esteem, making each employee more motivated.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Praise and give recognition when necessary
Feeling undervalued at work is the first reason why an employee quits his job. This reason has even more serious repercussions than low wages, limited days off and poor work-life balance.
So here’s how offering praise and recognition when necessary will make the team enthusiastic and eager to contribute to company-wide initiatives.
A great project manager might ask team members how they prefer to be rewarded or complimented on a job well done.
For some, it could be a “public” recognition during a meeting, while for others, it could be an individual positive feedback session.
This recognition also shows that the project manager cares about the well-being of their employees.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Making work satisfactory
Everyone wants to hear that what they do at work is important.
In order for team members to feel good about the work they are doing, they need to fully understand the mission and purpose of the organization.
Giving an overview of what each department does and why it does it allows team members to feel more connected to the organization and to understand where their part of the work fits into bringing a project to success.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Making work/life balance a priority
The concept of work-life balance has become a priority in many workplaces.
Team members must have a clear understanding that they are valued as loyal employees and as people who also have a life out of office.
The work-life balance can be improved by offering, for example, a few days of work from home, unlimited vacation days, discounts on health and wellness programs in facilities close to the company or childcare options.
Offering incentives that improve a team member’s overall quality of life shows that the organization and manager cares about their well-being.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Promoting well-being in the workplace
Whether it’s healthy food, exercise, meditation or awareness strategies, promoting well-being in the workplace is a great idea and therefore helps to increase productivity.
Many new wellness programs have been developed specifically to improve the work environment so that it is easier for employees to adopt and maintain healthy behaviors.
It is possible to create a culture of well-being by implementing these strategies:
- Prepare and share a list of healthy dining options within a predefined radius from the office.
- Organize bike racks and provide information resources about the benefits of cycling to work.
- Negotiate company discounts for memberships in wellness centers and gyms.
- Hire a yoga instructor or meditation specialist to come to the office once a week or a month to help reduce team members’ stress.
Showing team members how important it is for them to have a healthy lifestyle is a way to show them how important they are to the organization.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Launch an individual development plan
An individual development plan is a mean to assist employees in their career and personal development.
Its main purpose is to help employees achieve short and long-term goals and improve their current work performance.
An individual development plan can be used to develop a better understanding of each team member’s professional and personal goals and objectives, including strengths and areas in which everyone wants to improve.
This shows employees that the organization is seriously investing in them as individuals and puts everyone on the same level to achieve personalized goals.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Use feedback as a mini-mentoring tool
Effective leaders understand the power of feedback and use it to offer constructive criticism and positive recognition, removing any doubts or negative thoughts of the employee and communicating how an individual’s behavior aligns with the company’s results.
Through feedback, a leader can drive an employee away unwanted behavior and cement positive thinking and behavior that leads to personal and professional excellence.
Feedback sessions should be two-way conversations in which the employee can ask questions and raise concerns. You can use this article on how to get feedback from the project team.
If team members are afraid to ask a question, this is a warning signal of a big problem.
It is therefore important that the manager makes sure to be transparent and open in his approach so that both sides get the most out of the “mini-mentoring” session.
Improving the efficiency of a Team: Step out – from time to time – from the work routine
Just sitting at a desk in the office all day or chatting with clients for long periods of time, day after day, can undoubtedly become boring and routinary.
So the manager can surprise his team by holding the next meeting outside the company, perhaps in his favourite restaurant for lunch or in a meeting room in a building surrounded by greenery.
Also, many American companies have introduced the “Casual Friday“. On this day, employees are not required to follow the normal dress code in the office and may freely wear Hawaiian shirts, flip-flops, shorts, etc.
This will make the team members extremely productive during the day, but also during the following working days, since they should be well rested, refreshed and more than ready to face projects with new vitality.
The working environment could also improve the efficiency of the team. There are many companies that have left it to their teams to decorate and make the look of their office to their liking.
To ensure that these implementations last for a long time and that they actually lead to an improvement in team efficiency, it is crucial that they are implemented regularly and become an integral part of the organization.