Around the world, there are close to three billion people in the workforce, but only 40 percent of them reported being satisfied. These numbers are alarming because when the workforce is not happy then productivity and profits plummet by almost 50 percent, according to the global research and analytics firm.
Now, since many organizations have a diverse workforce, especially in North America and in Europe, this becomes even a more pressing issue in today’s changing business global climate. Whether one is a nurse, teacher or one who assembles toasters, they all want basically the same thing: respect, value their contribution and to be part of the team. In addition, they want to be listened to.
employee turnover is almost 50 percent higher than in places where the workers feel belonging and wanted. On average, it costs an organization close to $10,000 to hire a new employee.
Often it’s not about the perks such as free lunches or therapeutic massages that many workers crave, but rather how they are treated by the management and their colleagues.
Here are several suggestions that organizations can implement to make their workforce happier.
Trust: Confront hard issues in a timely fashion; protect the interests of all employees; keep staff members informed; have communication channels open; follow through; treat every employee fairly – salary, promotion, etc.
Respect: Let employees know of the contribution they are making; interact with your colleagues and try to care about their lives; speak calmly and never raise your voice; establish boundaries and understand your limits.
Listen: Do not interrupt; reiterate; don’t judge; read between the lines what is being said; be humble; pause for two seconds before responding (they may have a good point that you can apply).
When I first started my radio career, I got the opportunity to work in a multicultural radio station in Vancouver, B.C., where many of the staff members came in about an hour before their shifts started, and even stayed an hour after their shifts ended. Some workers, even came in on their days off just to say hello when they were in the neighborhood.
What was the difference between this radio station and other media outlets that I worked at? Employees were respected, listened to and reminded by the management of the contribution they were making in the company. And it costs the company nothing!