People make a first impression about your workplace within minutes of being there. When it comes to clients, new staff, or potential partners, they often base their decision to work with you (whether subconsciously or consciously) on your office ecosystem, which is why it’s so important to cultivate a positive and healthy culture.
Recognition expert Sarah McVanel is passionate about recognizing greatness in each other and ourselves, and says it is a fundamental tool in improving morale, increasing top talent retention, and generating a positive corporate culture — all of which lead to sustained business success and a stronger bottom line.
She shared three tips to help create and maintain a healthy workplace that will result in better working relationships with both customers and employees.
- Celebrate each other
As much as we think people have thick skin, everybody needs to feel acknowledged, appreciated, and valued rather than just being told what is needed, how to improve, and what to do differently. On the surface, someone may seem tough as nails, but within all of us is the need to do meaningful work and feel valued for it. This is at every level, from those just starting their career to the c-suite, and it impacts their energy and productivity. People will continue to work hard and more effectively when they feel that their greatness (their talents, passions, and virtues) are being cultivated, appreciated, tapped into, used, and valued.Make sure you celebrate your team in small and large ways on an ongoing basis.
- Ensure every voice is heard
Do you know what your talent has to say? Do you hear lots of ideas? Do you hear people chatting with each other, interacting on a social level, getting to know each other? Is your team connecting, sharing, and contributing their best ideas to important projects, pitches, clients, and problems? Or is there silence?
If you hear little to nothing, whether in meetings or around the office, that’s a good indicator that there’s toxicity in the work environment such as mistrust, disengagement, or inter-team tension. This cannot be ignored.
When a healthy ecosystem exists in nature, the population of its inhabitants grows. Do you have people who want to come and work with your team? Is there a lineup of people waiting to get in? Do you have a stack of resumes waiting for the first vacancy? Or is the environment stale and stagnant because there is no appreciation or acknowledgement for growth within the team?There’s a number of organizations I’ve worked with, that never have to post a job advertisement because they have a natural attrition. They have people who want to grow and be a part of the team because individuals are encouraged to do so and shown how to within the organization instead of having to look elsewhere.
Some people may feel powerless to induce change in an unhealthy workplace environment, but these three simple steps can have a powerful ripple effect throughout the office. Start small and you’ll see it grow.
Sarah McVanel has extensive experience overseeing training and development, organizational development, public relations, change leadership, government relations, integration, and community partnerships. Her talks help everyone from teams struggling with low engagement to organizations experiencing high turnover.
Interested in learning more about Sarah and what she can bring to your next organization? Email us at [email protected].