By Jeremy Wright

The old adage says “one bad apple ruins the whole barrel.” It’s no secret that one person’s bad day can affect the days of many who surround them, especially in situations where they work in close proximity to one another. Keeping your finger on the pulse of the overall morale of your employees can make or break a peaceful work environment. Let’s look at some ways we can boost overall morale and keep the tension in the office low.

Everyone wants to feel they serve a greater purpose. Sure, my job is answering customer questions, but if I’m not understanding why my position is so important, I’ll ultimately feel disposable. Take care to ensure your employees understand their value, not just in their role, but individually. Give praise where praise is due and take a genuine interest in their ideas and input. An employee can collect a paycheck anywhere, but a happy employee isn’t going to be so keen to go searching for alternatives.

I’m incredibly lucky to work for a company lead by people who have a passion for making the world a better place. While being in a customer support role allows me to make a persons’ job a little easier, there’s nothing more satisfying than to know I’m encouraged to share my compassion and desire to help with people who aren’t necessarily using our software. Because my company promotes a positive standing in relation to general society, we are (perhaps inadvertently) being trained to better associate with one another and our customers. We love helping children understand maths and sciences as much as we love helping you understand your PTO rules! Allow space for your employees to feel they’re doing well. Something as simple as a toy or a canned goods drive can have a massive impact on the less fortunate, and can offer your employees a chance to feel their purpose is much greater than playing the role of another “cog in the machine.”

Get to know your employees. Understanding who you’re working with helps you get a better feel of how to operate within the boundaries of a professional relationship with them. Kyle likely has a different sense of humor than Stan does, and it’s important to understand that. Everyone has different needs and desires, and certain communication styles simply won’t work with 100% of the people who cross the threshold of your office doors. Be sincere and respectful, appreciate individual boundaries, and simply remember we’re all working for the same goals in the end.