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6 Things That Make Employees Happy

6 Things That Make Employees Happy

Happy employees are productive employees. If this is true, then why do so few companies focus on making their employees happy? If you want to be a part of a successful company, then happiness needs to be at the forefront of everything.

Here are some specific things that make employees happy (and how you can leverage them to your advantage).

1. Flexible Work Scheduling

While you may assume that higher pay and better titles are the keys to making employees happy, the reality is that the average employee simply wants better work-life balance. One simple way you can help them achieve this is through flexible work scheduling. Here are a few tips:

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  • For shift workers, clearly communicate schedules well in advance so that employees know when they’re working. Ideally, this should be done at the beginning of the month.
  • For salaried employees, flex scheduling works really well. Under this setup, employees are allowed to set their own hours (so long as they get the allotted per-day and per-week numbers in).
  • Give employees the ability to work from home one day per week. This provides employees with a nice break from the day to day grind.

These are just a few ideas. Whatever you choose to do, make sure you’re taking work-life balance into consideration when creating schedules.

2. Clear Expectations

One of the most frustrating things for employees is that they don’t always know what they’re supposed to be doing. As a result, they end up feeling useless, underprepared, or anxious. Setting clear expectations for each employee and role is paramount to job satisfaction and happiness.

3. Recognition and Affirmation

If you want employees to be happy, and therefore productive, they need to know that their work matters. You can do this by showing them that their work is appreciated.

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There are plenty of ways to recognize and affirm employees, but Kelsey Libert, VP of marketing for Fractl, believes in giving little impromptu surprises. “My favorite forms of appreciation include unexpected treats like group lunches or a shortened workday,” she says. “I also like activities that add value for both the individual and the company, including team-building challenges and  fully paid continuing-education courses.”

4. Casual Work Environments

Sometimes making employees happy is as simple as establishing a workplace environment that people feel comfortable in. Instead of requiring people to wear business suits and maintain immaculate workspaces that resemble a sterile medical environment, loosen up and let them wear casual clothing and decorate their offices according to their own preferences.

5. Fewer Meetings

Do people actually like meetings? Is there anyone in your organization who feels a rush of adrenaline and excitement when they see an hour-long staff meeting pop up on their daily agenda? The answer is no. Meetings are boring and, much of the time, useless.

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The good news is that since meetings tend to be pointless, you can nix most of them. This lets employees spend more time getting things done and less time listening to others jabber about things that don’t relate to them. When you do decide to hold meetings, make them actionable.

6. Access to the Right Tools

Employees want to do their jobs well. While clear communication and expectations are a starting point, giving them the right tools is also important. Regularly communicate with your employees to ensure they have everything they need.

Are Your Employees Happy?

Happy employees are productive employees, and your company is the one that benefits the most from their productivity. Thus, if you want productivity out of your workforce, focus more on delighting them and less on establishing pointless rules and regulations. You won’t be disappointed with the results.

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Featured photo credit: Pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Larry Alton

Business Consultant

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Last Updated on September 17, 2018

How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

How to Stop Multitasking and Become Way More Productive

Today we are expected to work in highly disruptive environments. We sit down at our desks, turn on our computer and immediately we are hit with hundreds of emails all vying for our attention.

Our phones are beeping and pinging with new alerts to messages, likes and comments and our colleagues are complaining about the latest company initiative is designed to get us to do more work and spend less time at home.

All these distractions result in us multitasking where our attention is switching between one crisis and the next.

Multitasking is a problem. But how to stop multitasking?

How bad really is multitasking?

It dilutes your focus and attention so even the easiest of tasks become much harder and take longer to complete.

Studies have shown that while you think you are multitasking, you are in fact task switching, which means your attention is switching between two or more pieces of work and that depletes the energy resources you have to do your work.

This is why, even though you may have done little to no physical activity, you arrive home at the end of the day feeling exhausted and not in the mood to do anything.

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We know it is not a good way to get quality work done, but the demands for out attention persist and rather than reduce, are likely to increase as the years go by.

So what to do about it?

Ways to stop multitasking and increase productivity

Now, forget about how to multitask!

Here are a few strategies on how to stop multitasking so you can get better quality and more work done in the time you have each working day:

1. Get enough rest

When you are tired, your brain has less strength to resist even the tiniest attention seeker. This is why when you find your mind wandering, it is a sign your brain is tired and time to take a break.

This does not just mean taking breaks throughout the day, it also means making sure you get enough sleep every day.

When you are well rested and take short regular breaks throughout the day your brain is fully refuelled and ready to focus in on the work that is important.

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2. Plan your day

When you don’t have a plan for the day, the day will create a plan for you. When you allow outside influences to take control of your day, it is very hard not to be dragged off in all directions.

When you have a plan for the day, when you arrive at work your brain knows exactly what it is you want to accomplish and will subconsciously have prepared itself for a sustained period of focused work.

Your resistance to distractions and other work will be high and you will focus much better on the work that needs doing.

3. Remove everything from your desk and screen except for the work you are doing

I learned this one a long time ago. In my previous work, I worked in a law office and I had case files to deal with. If I had more than one case file on my desk at any one time, I would find my eyes wandering over the other case files on my desk when I had something difficult to do.

I was looking for something easier. This meant often I was working on three or four cases at one time and that always led to mistakes and slower completion.

Now when I am working on something, I am in full-screen mode where all I can see is the work I am working on right now.

4. When at your desk, do work

We are creatures of habit. If we do our online shopping and news reading at our desks as well as our work, we will always have the temptation to be doing stuff that we should not be doing at that moment.

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Do your online shopping from another place—your home or from your phone when you are having a break—and only do your work when at your desk. This conditions your brain to focus in on your work and not other distractions.

5. Learn to say no

Whenever you hear the phrase “learn to say no,” it does not mean going about being rude to everyone. What it does mean is delay saying yes.

Most problems occur when we say “yes” immediately. We then have to spend an inordinate amount of energy thinking of ways to get ourselves out of the commitment we made.

By saying “let me think about it” or “can I let you know later” gives you time to evaluate the offer and allows you to get back to what you were doing quicker.

6. Turn off notifications on your computer

For most of us, we still use computers to do our work. When you have email alert pop-ups and other notifications turned on, they will distract you no matter how strong you feel.

Turn them off and schedule email reviewing for times between doing your focused work. Doing this will give you a lot of time back because you will be able to remain focused on the work in front of you.

7. Find a quiet place to do your most important work

Most workplaces have meeting rooms that are vacant. If you do have important work to get done, ask if you can use one of those rooms and do your work there.

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You can close the door, put on your headphones and just focus on what is important. This is a great way to remove all the other, non-important, tasks demanding your attention and just focus on one piece of work.

The bottom line

Focusing on one piece of work at a time can be hard but the benefits to the amount of work you get done are worth it. You will make fewer mistakes, you will get more done and will feel a lot less tired at the end of the day.

Make a list of the four or five things you want to get done the next day before you finish your work for the day and when you start the day, begin at the top of the list with the first item.

Don’t start anything else until you have finished the first one and then move on to the second one. This one trick will help you to become way more productive.

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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