The best business owners know that happy workers are more productive, and keeping workers satisfied often calls for a little flexibility. Offering a flexible approach in the how, when, and where people work often boosts employee morale, which leads to positive results all around.
It’s easy to talk about being flexible, but making any type of change in the workplace can be daunting if you don’t know where to start. If you’re looking to increase your business efficiency, then try to adopt some of these changes.
Take a Person-to-Person Approach
Instead of implementing a blanket policy in regards to work hours and expectations, consider each employee’s individual needs and abilities. For instance, employees with children often appreciate the flexibility to leave work early for a school function, while those who have good self-management skills might appreciate the opportunity to telecommute.
“Take care of your people, and they will take care of their jobs,” says Dr. Linda Henman, of the Henman Performance Group. When people recognize that their needs and abilities are valued, they are more willing to put forth the effort.
Loosen the Reins
Flexibility also means that you need to take a step back in your leadership style and let your employees show you that they can get the work done. “Remove controls, but retain accountability,” says Dr. Henman. “If your people show you they don’t want or need close supervision, don’t force it on them. Micromanaging annoys motivated people.”
Opt for Team Projects
Appointing several people to a team allows them each to take a leadership role at different points within the project. This allows other members to get a much-needed break and alleviates the feeling that they need to be on call 24/7. Everyone needs a chance to recharge their batteries, and employees are more likely to be well-rested and ready to work if they know that business operations are still moving forward while they aren’t working.
Offer Opportunities for Mentoring
Mentoring improves business efficiency because it taps into the wisdom and knowledge of the staff you already have. Pairing junior employees with a senior mentor allows the junior staffer to get some much-needed experience, while also developing skills under the guidance of a more senior person. This ensures the task gets done, allows the junior employee to take on bigger roles, and frees up the senior employee for other responsibilities.
Transition to a Flexible Work Space
If you’ve traditionally relied on cubicles or partitioned offices, then maybe it’s time to rethink your workspace. Employees work and learn in a variety of ways, so it makes sense that your workspace should reflect this variety. Keep in mind that people have different wants and needs, so it’s best not to do a total overhaul of your office design. Instead, incorporate both coworking and private spaces, and allow employees to choose to work wherever they prefer.
Provide Employee Training
In order to make sure your employees are as productive as possible, offer training to help them maximize their work environment. For instance, if you’re implementing new workspaces, trying out new technology, or allowing more employees to telecommute, then offer guidance for how employees can best use these tools to both their own and the company’s advantage. Team-building, time-management, and communication workshops are all ways that employees can learn how to increase their workplace flexibility.
If redesigning your workspace involves new furniture, then pick flexible pieces from CORT Furniture Rental. With light desks and chairs, rolling cabinets, fold-up tables, and adaptable work stations, CORT’s office solutions offers an easy way to incorporate a new, flexible approach to your work environment.