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4 Ways to Build a Positive Workplace Environment

Positivity is a tremendous motivator in every part of life. But it certainly comes with benefits in the workplace. Employee morale, collaboration, productivity, retention, and job satisfaction are all bolstered by a positive environment.

These optimistic company cultures don’t just happen on their own. They’re the result of the actions and attitudes of everyone from the top brass to the entry-level worker. Building such a workplace must be thoughtful, concerted, and intentional.

Content employees create content coworkers and customers. There are thousands of little ways you can conjure up this attitude even in the face of pessimistic events. Here are four ways to build a positive workplace environment that everyone can get behind.

1.  Keep Morale Boosted

Morale is one of those words often used but perhaps not fully understood. Good morale is a positive feeling to be sure. But the term is grounded by enthusiasm, confidence, loyalty, and discipline. It’s an emotional feeling and a mental state that when high, can be contagious.

Boosting morale doesn’t have to be complicated. A manager’s or coworker’s “great job,” or “good question” can do the trick. Pep talks with coworkers struggling to achieve certain goals can help them get back up and dust themselves off. And an offer by a coworker to help, rather than criticize, makes a tremendous difference.

A positive environment is one filled with kindness, empathy, and the inclination to lend a hand when someone needs one. And that doesn’t mean just when employees are on the clock. There are also well wishes instilling confidence in a coworker taking finals at night school. Sending get well soon gifts when employees are out for more than a day or two is a spirit lifter. It lets them know you have neither forgotten them in their absence nor are frustrated with them for being out.

Send positive vibes to employees in the workplace as well as in their personal achievements and struggles. It lets them know you care about them as a person, not just as a proverbial cog in the wheel. That’s a big way to help them approach their jobs and lives with a can-do attitude.

2. Open Lines of Communication

It’s human nature to want to be seen, heard, and understood. It’s what gives people a feeling of being valued for who they are and what they have to say. Good communication is key to creating that positivity in the workplace.

Strive to produce a place where employees can express themselves freely without judgment. You never know what great ideas you might miss if they feel like they’ll be laughed at, or their input discounted. Remember that some employees will need encouragement to speak up, especially as they’re evaluating their own confidence.

Remember, too, that listening is sometimes even more important in communication than hearing. As Stephen R. Covey said, “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” Cultivate an environment where people listen, then take the time to absorb and ruminate on what’s said before responding.

Trust is essential in developing this type of open and positive communication. Employees can only develop trust if their employers are transparent and honest with them in their words and actions. But if open and frank communication occurs in the workplace routinely, employees will embrace the opportunity to engage in conversation.

3. Nurture Collaboration and Innovation

Teams need to work together to chalk up wins. If some members approach projects with negative attitudes, it’s going to bring down the entire team. However, collaboration can wipe out negativity and get everyone pulling in the same direction. And they’ll find innovative solutions to problems that may arise along the way.

When employees collaborate, they bring their individual ideas, strengths, and expertise to a common table. Collectively, they figure out how to use what they bring to move toward a singular goal. It’s their diversity, used collaboratively, that provides the positive force necessary to achieve goals.

Success relies on a, “we can do it” mindset, and that involves solving problems that stand in the way. Solid collaboration expedites the time it takes to solve problems. Moreover, it cultivates creativity and innovation that clear barriers that would otherwise impede progress.

“Two heads are better than one.” “Many hands make for light work.” These tried-and-true adages are about the strength of collaboration. A commitment to that and a dash of innovation and success is inevitable.

4. Support and Encourage Growth

Stagnation in life is a negative. If you’re going nowhere, it’s difficult to be optimistic about the future. So, it stands to reason that building a positive workplace requires giving people a place to go.

Employees’ lives are in a constant state of flux, which could be positive or negative at any given moment. But employers can help them focus on moving forward by supporting them in their efforts to improve their lives. Even better, they can take steps that encourage their employees to grow professionally and personally.

Tuition assistance for those furthering their education is one way to help. Providing training and professional development necessary for advancement is another. In these times when AI and automation are supplanting humans, employees can fear for their futures. Reskilling and upskilling can vastly increase their feelings of security and hope.

Maybe the goal is a raise, a promotion, or just special employee recognition for a job well done. Whatever support you provide will make employees feel optimistic about their futures. And they’ll bring that optimism to the job every day.

Accentuate the Positive

Companies of choice are filled with employees who are content, creative, and collaborative. Use these tips to build a workplace where employees bring positive thoughts with them every time they clock in. Your company, your employees, and your customers all win.

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