THE KEYS TO HAPPIER EMPLOYEES AND GREATER PRODUCTIVITY
by Donald sonn
Whether you have a few employees or you have a large number, it’s important to understand the different personalities contained in your office. This can be a real accomplishment in large offices, Understanding workplace psychology will allow you to focus on managing your employees effectively.
You might think that people go to work, do their job, come home, receive their pay and are done with it all. This is far from the complete picture. Homo Sapiens are a social species and desire to be a part of a larger and more meaningful endeavor. Humans want to be part of a team, working towards something which really matters. Work environments are far more important to your employees than you might think. By tapping into this, you can create a productivity scale which will increase profits and happiness far quicker than you might realize.
Managers often don’t understand workplace motivation. It’s not surprising when you consider how much a manager has to do these days. From managing conflict to finding new clients, dealing with problems and reaching targets, there is little time for anything else. However, by focusing on employees as people and thinking in the manner they think, you will be a better manager and you’ll be able to get the best out of your employees.
To create a positive and powerful office environment you need to think beyond the obvious and tap into the depths of the Psyche.
It sounds complicated, but you’d be surprised how obvious a lot of it really is!
This guide is going to open your eyes to the world of workplace psychology, allowing you to put into place different initiatives and methods which will not only allow your employees to feel better in their job role, but also to produce their best work time and time again.
HOW UNDERSTANDING PSYCHOLOGY LEADS TO INCREASED PRODUCTIVITY
When you hear the term ‘mental health’, what do you think? Does your mind automatically conjure up images of depression, anxiety, stress and the like? Mental health isn’t only about the negatives, because we all have mental health, just as we all have physical health.
There are countless things which can affect our mental health, for better or worse. As a manager, you can learn how to improve your employees’ mental health, allowing them to feel good in their office chairs, boosting their overall morale and therefore increasing productivity. When this is done across the entire office, you’ll notice the ripple effect in terms of deadlines being met, fewer mistakes being made, happier customers, more ideas coming your way from passionate employees, and more profits at the end of each quarter.
Mental health isn’t always negative, it doesn’t always pertain to conditions such as depression, and understanding this will allow you to tap into productivity as a whole. The mind controls everything we do as humans. From the movements we make to the decisions we take, the mood we’re in and the words we say. Understanding the mind doesn’t mean that you need to have a psychiatry degree, it means you need to understand how your employees think about things which matter in general, and know how to paint a picture of positivity, which becomes contagious across your office.
HOW IMPROVED MORALE DIRECTLY RESULTS IN INCREASED PRODUCTIVITY
When you break it down, it seems to be an easily answered question.
When you feel better, you do a better job. It’s really that simple. If you feel that you’re valued by someone, you want to do more for them, you want to almost reward them for their faith in your and prove that their faith isn’t incorrectly placed. You feel comfortable in your role, you know what is expected of you and that allows you to work creatively and freely, without feeling shackled by uncertainty or fear.
When you understand this, you’ll get that staff who feel positive and upbeat in their role also go the extra mile. The business becomes their own, they want it to succeed because it’s a reflection back on them. Before you know it, you’ll have a family feel in your space which transcends any issue that may come your way. You overcome obstacles together as a team, and nobody feels left behind or blamed.
Tapping into how the mind works and creating the positive picture we’ve just described will truly give you the keys to workplace productivity. We all know where productivity leads – profits and growth!
The good news is that understanding all of this doesn’t require deep and meaningful discussions and it doesn’t require you to do mental assessments, it simply requires you to open your own mind and put yourself in the position of your employees.
THE IMPORTANCE OF DIVERSITY, EQUALITY, AND INCLUSIVENESS
One of the biggest and most important issues in the modern workplace is diversity, equality and inclusiveness. Without these three elements your business will fail. No question.
The three terms might sound the same and when you describe them and they do overlap, but they’re subtly different at the same time.
- Diversity – Understanding that within any workforce there will be a range of people, some of whom may have specific differences. Diversity is about appreciating and understanding those differences, while ensuring that those very differences don’t cause them to be treated differently, or to be left out of discussions around the meeting room seating.
Looking at work for this perspective brings forward unexpected benefits for the business when focusing on diversity.
- Equality – This means treating everyone the same regardless of any difference they have, which can also include ability level, gender, pay scale, position, etc. Over the last few years, we have certainly heard a lot about equality of pay between men and women and that falls into this particular bracket. Put simply, two people who are doing the same job, with the same responsibility level should be paid the same and given the same perks as each other, and shouldn’t be given extra favour due to their gender, or anything else.
- Inclusiveness – Diversity and inclusiveness do overlap, but the main difference with this particular term is that while differences aren’t ignored, they’re not pointed out either. In addition, the key point is that everyone is treated the same. Regardless of gender, sexuality, religion, race, disability, or anything else, every single person in the office space receives the same treatment and same responsibilities.
These three terms affect workplace psychology a huge amount. If you go against any of these three things, you’re going to damage morale quickly and very badly indeed. It’s vital to treat everyone the same.
It’s important to point out that this doesn’t cover making appropriate adjustments to someone’s office furniture if they need it, e.g. due to a disability. This should be done in order to help them work in a comfortable way and should be done as standard. Making these changes doesn’t mean you’re treating them differently, it simply means you’re helping them do their job. Diversity, equality and inclusiveness cover the opportunities you give to employees, the way they’re spoken to, listened to, and the work they do.
By embracing differences but ensuring that they do not affect the way you treat someone, you’re creating a family feel in your office space and empowering all employees. Failing to understand this point means that treating one person even slightly differently will affect everyone. Colleagues still stand up for one another, and diversity, equality and inclusiveness are extremely important within a team environment. By ensuring that everyone is treated the same, you will boost morale throughout the entire office space.
STRESS AND BURNOUT AT WORK
One of the single biggest problems within a workplace environment in the modern day is stress and burnout. During 2018, 73% of adults felt unable to cope or totally overwhelmed due to stress over the previous year. Within that 82% of women surveyed admitted to feeling stress, compared to 66% of men.
That’s pretty enlightening, and a huge number of people potentially hiding the fact that they’re feeling overwhelmed with their work, or totally unclear about what is expected of them.
Stress can be life-threatening when left unchecked, over a long period of time. While a very small amount of stress can be motivating, it can be extremely dangerous when it goes to the extreme, and when it goes on for too long.
Stress makes it literally impossible to focus and cope, it can affect your appetite and sleep pattern, which works against you in a totally different way, and starts to affect your entire life. Stress is super-dangerous and something which employers are starting to take more seriously as the dangers are highlighted. Of course, stress is also one of the main reasons for long-term sickness, which causes a business a huge amount of cash. Of course, it also affects morale within the office, because if one person is stressed out, it’s quite likely that several others are too and just not admitting to it.
Remember, we’re talking about workplace psychology here, and it is extremely damaging to mental health to experience stress over the long-term. This can easily lead towards anxiety and depression, which are dark roads you should try and avoid as much as possible.
Having a stress management plan in place within your office is vital. This means that everyone feels supported and part of the team, nobody feels that the sole responsibility of any task sits squarely on their shoulders alone and that there is an open-door policy for staff to discuss problems or fears with their manager. By doing this, you’re breaking down the stigma of stress, and therefore reducing its effects in a powerful way.