24 Jan 4 Changes Worth Making in Your Work Environment
January is a time of change. For some companies, it’s implementing new structures, processes and goals while for others, it’s reflecting on what changes need making and how to make them. Regardless of whether you are in the thick of developmental or organisational action plans, there are a few changes you could make in your work environment which would garner a great return, for you, your people and your company. The best part is, these changes can be implemented without having to establish a committee and publish them in a strategic plan.
1. Encourage More Interaction
In a time when digital communication reigns supreme, we shouldn’t let person-to-person interaction fade. It’s the best way to build relationships both professionally and personally. Casually check in with your people and facilitate some events. Making your work environment more social will benefit everyone. The practices, behaviours and attitudes of your people are what contributes to the environment and culture of a company, so you need to be in the know about them as well as how best to support them. If some of your people are working remotely, ensure you make an effort to engage with them beyond the regular email update. For example, there is a big difference between a lean email asking about the status of a project and a video call asking how they are. It’s equally important to strengthen these kinds of relationships. Building a culture of good rapport in your company stands to benefit everyone, and you’ll see the return in their work.
2. Create Opportunities
People should never feel limited in their work environment. You will have people who are perfectly content where they are and prefer to do what they do best but you are always going have people who crave advancing and upskilling. Having both is perfectly fine and as you know, it’s your job as a people leader to support and facilitate people’s professional needs where possible. The good news is, you’d also be surprised how often this can happen in-house. We have a mentoring feature in our software which facilitates internal coaching. This approach is not only cost-effective but further connects your people and shows them how they can develop further in their work within your company so they won’t need to look elsewhere. You also can’t always find the qualified people you are looking for, which can slow down company growth. Also, offering these kinds of opportunities within your company is a positive for the mentor and the mentee. Training and mentoring foster feelings of progress and give-back, which gives people a sense of progression as well as being part of a community. This kind of ethos in a work environment benefits everyone in the long run, including your business.
3. Support Everyone’s Goals
With fresh company goals for the new year, comes team goals and individual goals, all of which must be supported. Our software aligns these various goals so everyone, whether solo, group or wider, are working towards the same overarching outcome. And this is a transparent process. As a people leader, people need to know and feel you care about what they want to accomplish and back them in achieving it. It can be as simple as a casual chat about what they would like to achieve and how you can help them get there. They may not need much from you but, they might need the go-ahead on an idea or just knowing you are available if they need any guidance can be a great help. There are many ways you can provide support, and an excellent way to know the best way is by asking your people.
4. Be Flexible
It’s no surprise that more and more people are looking for flexibility in their work. After all, we are living in an era where many are seeking a better work-life balance. It can come in a variety of forms, from people wanting to work flexi-time so they can pick up their children from school or someone who wants to work for your company but needs to reside in another location entirely. There are many positives for your company’s work environment by offering greater flexibility such as less time spent commuting, lowering costs and improving retention rates, and we now have the technology to support people’s requirements.
This list might only have four-pointers, but by even implementing one in your work environment, you will see the return. Talk to you people, give them the chance to develop, support their professional desires and adapt to their needs. People who feel acknowledged and valued are more likely to be productive. It also works towards retention and company growth. Any change focused on the wellbeing of your people and bettering company culture, is going to know a positive result.