on January 5, 2009
It’s a new year…and from everything I’ve observed, heard and read, it’s going to be a year when employers will be challenged to keep worker morale high. That’s because people everywhere, in all walks of life, white collar and blue, at all income levels, are worried about their futures. The economy is uncertain, job security doesn’t exist, and the possibility of personal financial disaster is a bit too close for comfort for millions of Americans. And it’s also because the odds of finding a new job are slim…so employees feel somewhat stuck in their current employment situations. And though they are certainly happy to have a job, it doesn’t mean they are happy with the job.
A lot of bosses think that giving big raises is the only thing they can do to increase morale. Not so. Even if you could give big raises (and you probably can’t or won’t or shouldn’t), more money doesn’t raise morale. No, to raise morale your employees don’t need more money. They need more nice.
Sure, it seems pretty simple, but it’s true. Employees in all kinds of jobs—executives, physicians, trade workers, attorneys, maintenance staff, teachers, sales people, administrative assistants, clerks, nurses…every single job on the planet, actually—will be pretty happy at work if their boss(es) and coworker(s) are pleasant, kind, supportive, and understanding. Being smiled at every day, hearing words of thanks and appreciation, feeling supported and encouraged, and having fun occasionally are the foundations of high morale.
For most of us—a lot of us, anyway, It’s not hard to be nice. For others, as we all know, it’s apparently darn near impossible. More on that next time. For today, try smiling more. It’s a great place to start!