Boosting Company Morale: 9 Steps to Take

Morale is a concept which can be hard to define, but it's one of the most important elements in job quality. A miserable workplace, with low morale, can be a terrible place to work. All management studies indicate that if you want to have a successful business, you need genuinely motivated staff with high morale. A truly modern employer, a market leader like Google, spends more effort on creating a positive working environment than some companies make in a year. It pays off in improved performance, and attracting top level talent.

Raising morale, the modern way

Raising morale with each of these measures will inspire staff and improve morale. Productivity will increase, absenteeism will decrease drastically, and staff retention will be excellent, retaining talent and performance capacity. The principles are pretty simple:

  1. Provide a good physical working environment, clean, open, with enough light and pleasant place to be.
  2. Make a point of showing proper recognition of staff achievements.
  3. Remove negative elements from the workplace as soon as possible.
  4. Provide incentives and real bonuses to staff for performance.
  5. Resolve any grievances or other issues promptly and fairly.
  6. Promote reliable people with proven talent and experience.
  7. Promote a positive fact, as well as an image, of good management.
  8. Create a social network.
  9. Involve staff in projects and training to allow career advancement.

Causes of low morale

Morale can boost productivity, or destroy it. The most common causes of low staff morale are:

  • Stress
  • Salary levels
  • Management issues
  • Office politics
  • Unfair work practices
  • Lack of recognition
  • Exclusion from social networks
  • Lack of career opportunities and training
  • Un-motivated workers can be very negative, doing no more than they're paid to do.
  • Staffs with poor work environments tend to underperform.
  • Staff with difficult or unpleasant working conditions experience negative morale, and therefore experience serious lack of motivation.
  • Aggressive management techniques contribute greatly to stress levels.

Effects of low morale

The employer suffers as a result. Low morale produces a range of effects:

  • Loss of productivity means loss of profits.
  • Lack of interest and initiative means lack of competitive abilities.
  • Loss of experienced staff means loss of business performance.
  • Grievance disputes can mean very expensive lawsuits, if not resolved effectively.
  • Lack of management credibility means lack of authority.

If you can build a team to overcome the causes of low morale, you can create a productive and inspired team. Don't be surprised if you find that you've created exactly the sort of place you've always wanted to work yourself. It will be worth the effort.