Take a quick look around your office. What do your employees faces look like, happy, sad, frustrated? We all know that a happy worker is a productive worker, so why not, as their employer, make your employees are happy in their work environment. Sounds easy right? But what if it isn't, what if, no matter what you try, your workers are never happy.
Where you should start!
The first place that any employer should look is to the employee themselves; at the end of the day these are the people you are trying to keep happy. By understanding this, you can begin to understand how you need to adapt your office space or office culture, maybe. A great way to understand your needs of your employees, after your initial chat, is Maslow's hierarchy. Here you can begin to develop your understanding of what your employees need in order to make them happy in the work place and overall, more productive.
Maslow's hierarchy in the business environment
Let's take a look at the hierarchy. Maslow's hierarchy can be found in a triangular shape with the more basic needs at the bottom. The needs are as follows:
- Level 1: Physiological needs; these include the need to eat, drink, sleep work etc. By providing a work environment where people feel they have the right to eat, drink and even sleep can create a happy worker. Not only this, but providing them the ability to eat and drink outside of work due to their income creates a happy feeling.
- Level 2: Safety needs; these include feeling safe in the environment you are working within, the feeling of job security, knowing that you health will not be compromised at work, etc.
- Level 3 : Social needs; the ability to create a good team atmosphere, a working environment where employees feel comfortable enough to socialise, and having friendly supervision from people higher up within the organisation can help to keep workers happy. After all, a work place which feels uncomfortable and where workers are afraid to communicate to their colleagues creates an uninviting atmosphere, one which nobody wants to work within.
- Level 4: Esteem needs; these include creating job titles for workers, recognising achievements and making them feel appreciated as if they are actually making a contribution to the team effort. Even if a worker does not directly influence the organisations decision making, by making them feel like they do by giving them a small bit of responsibility, can encourage them to feel motivated and work in a more productive manner.
- Level 5: Self-actualisation; creating the opportunity for promotion and being able to grow within your organisation give's your employees the feeling of Self-actualisation. Without feeling like there is the opportunity to develop their own skills and abilities, with the chance to develop in their career, employees become unmotivated, sluggish and unproductive. They also become less loyal to the business and are likely to leave to find better opportunities.
Not all of these are easily met within the workforce but by identifying them you, as the employer, commence the journey of creating happier employees and a more productive and loyal work force.
How to create the right environment
One way in which you can create a happy and healthy work environment is to introduce a space to relax, have fun and be away from office desk. There are many ways to do this, you could go mad and be as lavish as Google by introducing a slide, games room, and a â€˜chill-out' aquarium, or you could create a peaceful paradise with the use of garden designers and add an outdoor space where your employees can enjoy the sunshine in the summer.
However, we all know that there is never enough space in the office, so why not go that extra mile and create something extraordinary which will make other organisations jealous. In Mexico City, for example, Coca Cola were presented with an empty helipad on their rooftop. The easiest option for them would have been to leave the rooftop bare after stripping it down. But oh no, not Coca Cola, they created a sustainable rooftop garden and custom outdoor office space.
Thus, if you are located in London with a small office space and you are not too sure how to create the sanctuary of relaxation for you employees, why not get garden designers to transform your rooftop in to the tranquil haven which your employees will love. Just imagine the view when you are enjoying your lunch!
The Study, it works!
It has been proven that plants in the office can increase the productivity of workers by 12% and reduce the stress of employees by lowering their systolic blood pressure by 1 to 4 units. This was shown in a study undertaken by Virginia Lohr and her colleagues at the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, University of Washington State. They studied participant's blood pressure and emotions whilst they completed computer tasks in the presence and/or absence of plants.
Could you imagine the possibilities if those workers had had somewhere to escape, somewhere to relax and enjoy some time alone, thinking about things other than work. It could have made them even more productive, even less stressed and even happier in their jobs.
So if you are thinking about ways to keep your employees happy, here is the perfect solution, grab that garden designer and improve your London rooftop, or even just introduce some potted plants to the office desks. Whatever you do, just make sure you create the perfect environment to keep your employees happy!
Lilac James is a successful business woman and entrepreneur. When she is not in the office working hard she loves gardening and spending time with her family. Karen has always been proud of her garden but she wouldn't have been able to create such a relaxing space without the advice of experts such as All Seasons Landscape.