No matter how big your workforce, whether it’s a small, close-knit production company, or a large-scale engineering firm, your workforce is the lifeblood of your operation. Keeping your team happy, focused and productive will ensure that they are effective at everything they do, whether as a collective or individually.
Investing in Individuals - Focus on Education and Training
Education and training are important to keep your workforce up to date on the latest introductions to your sector. Focus on providing individuals with tailored education as and where you can, such as a masters in lean manufacturing. When you invest in an employee, you get so much back in terms of increased productivity and effectiveness. When individuals and the workforce as a whole feel they are learning, improving, and being provided with relevant on-the-job training, they will feel valued and appreciated, and this is beneficial to keeping employees happy within the company for as long as necessary.
Make Communication a Priority
You cannot expect an efficient and effective workforce if you do not communicate effectively. Communication is essential to getting across what you expect from the workforce. If clear values and expectations are set out from the beginning, then everyone knows what they are working towards. Ensure that communication is handled on a daily basis, and where possible, one to one. Team meetings and briefings are good, but sometimes to get further into an issue then you need to utilize one-to-one communication.
Celebrate and Reward Success and Achievements
If the workforce has done something great, then let them know. If an individual has achieved something at work or on a personal level, then congratulate them and celebrate what they have achieved. A happy and motivated workforce is a workforce that feels highly valued and appreciated, so keep this in mind. Remember that even a quick email to say thanks can go a long way to showing your appreciation. Encourage the workforce to get involved in things outside of work as this will help them feel good, and it will help you foster feelings of goodwill amongst the local community.
Ensure Targets are Focused
Make sure that any targets are given to individuals or a group are focused. When you give clear and focused targets, then there is no confusion, and no room for confrontation should targets not be achieved. When everyone knows their role and knows what they are working towards both individually and as part of a team, you are actually working to create a harmonious and balanced workplace which, of course, will lead to an efficient and effective workforce.
Incentivize the Workforce
When your workforce receives something for the work they have provided or contributed, then they feel appreciated, and they will want to continue working hard for their team and the business as a whole. You can incentivize employees with cash rewards, gift vouchers, or gifts such as spa packages. Of course, incentivizing doesn’t just have to come in the monetary or financial form; it can also come in the form of time. If you can give time to your workforce, they will be appreciative. For example, give them an extra day or half a day off when they reach sales targets. Or give them the opportunity to work flexibly on a few days as a “reward” for everything that they have done or contributed. Your workforce does not live to work, and this is important to remember. If you can create a workplace that they will want to be in and enjoy coming to, then the rewards you receive will be greater in terms of increased and efficient production at all levels.
Welcome Feedback and Contribution
When your workforce is actively involved with how things are done, then you will notice the increased level of activity and ownership, both of which are good for production levels. Hold monthly meetings that allow your workforce to share their views, opinions, and ideas. Provide opportunities for contribution as and where you can and see what you can get out of the sessions that may help improve your operation as a whole. As well as allowing contributions also allow and welcome feedback. When you open the floor for feedback, you give people a chance to speak about things that may be bothering them or affecting them within work. If you can establish small or minor problems through gathering feedback, then you can prevent problems from escalating and turning into larger, more costly issues.