In this fast-paced technological era, creating a human workplace is paramount to keep everyone happy, healthy, and engaged. However, it can be a significant challenge, as everyone’s work is now tied into computer operating systems rather than working collaboratively and face-to-face.
To create a more human workplace, human resources professionals and executive teams have to lead by example and get everyone out of their silos. Here are three ways your organization can create a more human workplace.
The best way to create a more human workplace is to put employees above all else. Your human resources are your single, most valuable asset and should be treated as such. Look beyond what an employee does within the confines of the office take a proactive approach to whole person development. What drives and motivates your employees? What are their goals and their challenges? Who are they outside of work? Not only does taking the time to treat your employees like humans rather than numbers create a better work environment, but it also attracts and keeps top talent who enjoy working in such a positive space.
Look at what you can do to make work flexible for your employees. Give the opportunity for remote work days so they can complete their tasks from home when their child is sick, saving vacation days for self-care. Use Humanity to give them more control over their schedule, empowering them to handle shift changes and submit vacation requests well in advance.
The more efforts made to treat people like people, the more productive, engaging, and human the workplace will be.
Create Opportunities to Collaborate and Connect
Arrivals + Departures, formerly known as Extreme Group, is an advertising agency that likes to take an old-school approach to how they interact and approach projects. One of the unconventional ways they encourage self-care and employee interaction is Beer O’Clock Fridays, in which employees are welcome to sit in the common area and enjoy a beer during the last hour of the day before the weekend. This gives the employees a chance to unwind and vent about their week, getting it off their chest before the weekend.
This format won’t work for every kind of business structure, especially when there are a lot of employees in a limited area. However, incorporating regular get-togethers can create an opportunity for discussion and human interactions outside of cubicle walls.
Look at how you can encourage communication amongst your people, beyond the scope of work. Do you incorporate a Monday morning coffee break where people can ease back into the week and discuss their weekend? Perhaps creating a social committee will help get people more engaged.
Recognition and Rewards
People like to receive acknowledgment for a job well done. After all, your employees spend a significant portion of their lives at work. Take time to thank people for their efforts and encourage others to do the same. Create a monthly prize for recognition, asking people to nominate someone who helped them in some way. Create a positive message board where people can share notes acknowledging someone else for their efforts.
Studies show that organizations with a culture of recognition and reward have a significantly lower turnover rate than those that don’t. As your turnover rate ultimately impacts your bottom line, it’s not only beneficial on the human level of the business but the financial side as well.
Many organizations fail to incorporate recognition and reward strategies out of the belief that someone working is rewarded with a paycheck. While that’s true, many people go above and beyond their job description and deserve to be acknowledged for it. A person who feels appreciated will always do more than is expected of them.
Creating a human workplace makes going to work more enjoyable for everyone. Remember to view your employees as people rather than worker bees, and treat them with the respect they deserve.