Employers have been paying closer attention to workplace environment in recent years. As society has become smarter, businesses have learned that employee happiness or stress has a huge effect on productivity. Through the #MeToo movement, women have shined a light on the debauchery that has long haunted their work experience. This movement has given a voice to women all over the country who are demanding a change in the workplace environment.
Another thing to ponder is that millennials make up the largest generation in the workforce and will represent over 50% of it in two years. Millennials, more than any other generation have a need to feel like the work they do matters. Above all, you want everyone at your company to feel comfortable working for you so that they can perform to their best abilities. Here are a few different ways to make your company’s culture conducive to productivity.
What you need to know about millennials
Millennials are like a Rubik’s Cube to the rest of the adult world. Of course, a lot of it is just generational differences, but Millennials also grew up during the greatest technological boom ever. Their worldviews were shaped in a time where technology was opening a door to a realm of endless possibilities.
Social media is the most obvious cultural phenomenon among Millennials. They have used it to launch businesses, to launch political movements, and even to launch themselves into fame. Now you don’t need MTV to release your musical video. You can do that on youtube. Because of Facebook, you can talk to people on the other side of the world—for free.
What that means for you as an employer is that the most dominant generation in the workforce has very high but meetable expectations. You don’t have to give them a “playroom” stocked with video games or nap rooms with funnily shaped furniture. However, you do need to make them feel like their work matters and like they’re valued as an employee. Building a team environment and recognizing exceptional work are the keys to making Millennials fall in love with your company.
What you need to know about sexual harassment
Recently sexual harassment and assault in the workplace have been put under a glaring light. For decades, women have languished in a workplace culture that greatly favored powerful men over their female employees. The #MeToo movement has brought to the public’s attention the need to investigate and change how women are treated on the job.
The good news is that many of the problems that women have faced are fixable with education. Anti-harassment training goes a long way towards improving the workplace culture for the women at your company. This training sets the tone for the kind of conduct that you expect out of your employees. Firmly lay out what is and isn’t acceptable as far as workplace interactions, and when a line is crossed, strictly enforce the prescribed penalty. Make yourself available to handle serious complaints if possible. You want your employees to feel comfortable about approaching you with problems because this could help you to avoid more of them in the future.
Inform your employees
No matter what the age or gender is of your employees, you want them to feel like your company values them as more than an employee. That doesn’t mean that you have to start passing out bonuses like Halloween candy or planning weekly parties. Your employees just need to know that you know that they are humans and not just a means of production.
One way you can show your employees that you care is by simply keeping them informed. If you offer health insurance, let them know about the local health information exchange so they can find the best doctors in your network. During the summer, post announcements for weekend discounts for theme parks and water parks. If a local store is having a big sale on groceries or electronics, then post the advertisements on bulletin boards in your building. Small things like this go a long way towards showing employees that you know and appreciate that they have a life to attend to and enjoy, as well.