How to ensure a good working environment in your office
When you manage a workplace, you are typically responsible for multiple employees.
When you manage a workplace, you are typically responsible for multiple employees.
That is quite a responsibility. You need to make sure that your employees thrive in the workplace. But how do you maintain a good working environment?
In this blog post, we take a closer look at how you can create a better work environment. Read on below and get inspired about how to create a better working environment for your workplace.
What is a good working environment?
A good working environment can seem like a bit of a broad concept - what, in fact, is a good working environment? When we talk about the work environment as a whole, there are several different factors that can affect it; both physical and mental factors can determine whether a workplace is a good working environment.
If we start by taking a closer look at the physical factors, then it may very well be the physical work environment that contributes to a good work environment. Amongst other things, it could be that a good indoor climate and plenty of natural light are provided. It could also be that noise nuisances have been lowered in various ways.
A good working environment can also be affected by the actual design of the office. This may, for example, be in relation to office furniture, technical equipment, and the tools that are available.
When it comes to the physical factors, there should also be a focus on the impact of these upon employees. This is because the physical well-being of employees also contributes to influencing the working environment. It can be in relation to working positions, working methods, and so on.
These are just some of the physical factors that can affect the work environment. If we look at the psychological factors, these could consist of mundane work tasks, a focus on mistakes, too much management control or unrealistic tight deadlines. It could also be social factors such as personality clashes with colleagues.
When we talk about the psychological factors, the working environment can also be affected by the employees’ private lives. This could, for example, entail pressure from family, their housing situation, transport to and from work, leisure activities, and relationships with friends.
This clearly demonstrates that there are many different aspects that can affect the working environment at your place of work. It is therefore no surprise that many employers find it difficult to find out exactly what to focus on in order to create a good working environment.
Focus on the joy of your employees in the workplace
If you’re looking to create a good working environment, it is important that you see things through the eyes of your employees. You will most likely not improve the working environment very much if you only focus on what you think will create a good working environment without considering their needs.
First and formerly, you need to ask how you can create a good working environment for them. Of course, it can be difficult for your employees to respond to such a question if they haven’t had time to think about it, but you can choose to ask them in other ways.
You can get employees to point you in the right direction. By this, we mean that you need to get employees to speak up about where there could be room for improvement. From there, it is easier for them to make suggestions and for you to identify how they think the working environment can be improved.
There are different ways to approach this. You can physically talk to your employees about what they think a good work environment consists of them. If you have many employees, however, this can be quite a lengthy process.
Alternatively, you can carry out a questionnaire survey. If you choose to make the answers anonymous, people will also be more likely to respond honestly. This approach can mean that you get some concrete feedback that can be really useful, and can actually lead you to solutions to create a better working environment.
Invest in a good working environment - for the company and its employees
If you choose to do a survey or talk to your employees, it is important that you also use the results to take action afterwards. Otherwise, it will all be wasted energy.
You can attain an improved working environment if you closely study what your employees' thoughts are about their current workplace environment. Based on that, you can invest in the right solutions, which will lead to a good and healthy working environment.
There can be many different things that need to be addressed. For example, many employees may think there is too much noise in the office. It may also be that they want better office furniture that is ergonomically correct.
No matter what your employees' thoughts and ideas are, it is very important that you listen to them. It has probably taken them a while to have the courage to express their opinion about how they think their working environment could be improved. You therefore need to reward them with the solutions that can actually help to create a better workplace.
This does not, of course, mean that you have to invest in all of their proposals, and any solutions will obviously also need to make sense financially. But it can be highly advantageous to invest in the things that employees believe affect their daily lives in the workplace the most.
In addition to this, it is a good idea for you to communicate the process to the employees. You can sincerely acknowledge their proposals for a better working environment, but honestly say that not all things can be afforded at this point in time. It shows that you are committed and willing to invest in a good working environment for your employees.
Give your employees a better work environment with the perfect telephone box for offices.
Any investment in a good working environment is, of course, an advantage for your employees; this in turn can lead to greater job satisfaction. Job satisfaction is important in a workplace as it creates loyal employees who will work more efficiently with you towards good results when they feel like an active part of the company.
There are, therefore, many positive after-effects of investing in a good working environment. It is good for both your employees and your business.
Do you currently have a bad working environment? Ask yourself these 5 questions to find out:
Are you unsure about whether you currently have a bad working environment, or do you just not know what to focus on in order to make it better?
Everyday life can be busy, so it can be difficult to discern whether your working environment is good or bad. And if you are in charge, it can be difficult to keep your finger on the pulse because you may not see or hear what is actually being experienced and talked about in the office.
Here are 5 signs that there is room for improvement in the workspace:
- There is generally a large turnover of employees. If, as a rule, your employees do not stay long in the workplace, it is a clear sign that there is room for improvement.
- You have many (and maybe long) sick leave periods. If there is a tendency for a lot of employees to have sick days, it may be a sign that you have a poor working environment.
- Is teamwork a bit of a challenge? If you often have cooperation problems and internal conflicts, it can be a clear symptom of a mentally unhealthy working environment.
- Do you struggle with maintaining your employees’ concentration levels at the end of the day? Then it might be a sign that there is room for improvement physically. Maybe your equipment is too old, or that fresh air is not circulated, or that the light isn’t bright enough, or that noise levels are too high - any of these factors could be the cause.
Are many tasks performed under stress? If an employee often feels under a great time pressure and has too tight deadlines, it can have a major negative effect on their mental working environment.
Did you recognise any of thise points?
Maybe you recognised all of them? Or maybe you could identify with just a few of the questions? This does not necessarily mean that you have a bad workplace - but it is definitely a sign that there is room for improvement.
But where to focus?
It can be quite a task to create a good workplace with a good and healthy working environment, because both mental and physical factors are crucial. Both are essential, and both the mental as well as physical conditions that surround us for so many hours every day have a big effect on how we feel - and thus how we perform both at work and at home.
Let's summarise the 10 tips for a better work environment:
- A good working environment requires both mental and social efforts.
- A good working environment makes for happier and healthier employees - and this can be seen in output for the business.
- The physical work environment is important, and here the focus must be on interior design, office furniture, technical equipment, and so on.
- It is important to move - both by changing working positions and working methods.
- Indoor climate and natural light contribute to better physical conditions in the workplace.
- Noise is a huge stress factor, and it is therefore important to prevent both noise and background noise as much as possible.
- Mundane work tasks, a focus on mistakes (rather than progress or good work), too much control and tight deadlines, not to mention social relationships, contribute to creating a poorer mental work environment.
- Create improvements by seeing it all from the perspective of your employees - and listen to them when they have suggestions and desires for improvements.
- Design a questionnaire that your employees can answer anonymously, or talk to them yourself - it is up to you and your employees which option you feel more comfortable with. You can also make a suggestion box in the office, where anyone can make suggestions on an ongoing basis.
- Take the suggestions that you get seriously. Your employees have suggested the changes for a reason - and you can create a good mental work environment, amongst other things, when your employees feel seen and heard.