Do your Sales, Support, or Creative teams have the blues?
Suppose productivity around the workplace is a little slow, or people seem slightly melancholy, and nobody seems particularly excited to strive for a more excellent, joint purpose. In that case, you may have a morale problem on your hands.
While lack of morale sucks for any team, virtual teams (who are usually at least 13% more productive, by the way) face losing their team spirit or feeling disconnected from one another. Dissatisfied employees (from the janitor to the VP) often hurt customers.
Visual communication doesn’t just help you get ‘er done when everyone’s feeling great – but can massively boost everyone’s mood, reignite fuzzy team feelings, and reconnect your rockstar team to their brilliance—because, after all, that’s why you hired them.
What is Employee Morale?
Employee morale refers to employees’ satisfaction and attitude throughout their tenure with a business or organization. A negative workplace culture can result in diminished employee satisfaction and decreased productivity. Consequently, employees seek alternative employment opportunities, leading to high turnover rates.
While employers cannot directly instill positive morale in their employees, they play a significant role in influencing it. When employees feel supported and well-cared for by their company, it cultivates intrinsic motivation and establishes an environment conducive to optimal performance.
Occasionally, employees may experience low morale due to factors unrelated to company culture, such as personal challenges or difficulties outside of work. However, these instances are typically isolated and do not necessarily reflect the overall morale within the company.
Importance of High Morale in the Workplace
Employee morale is not just a matter of sentiment; it directly impacts organizational performance. It affects everything from employee retention to productivity and company culture. According to a Gallup study, disengaged employees cost U.S. companies $450 to $550 billion annually in lost productivity. Conversely, engaged teams show 21% greater profitability. Recognizing this correlation emphasizes the importance of proactively addressing employee morale issues.
Let’s delve into the importance of employee morale:
1. Employee Retention and Productivity
High morale directly correlates with employee retention rates. According to a Gallup study, companies with engaged employees experience 59% less turnover. For example, Google’s approach to fostering high morale includes offering perks such as free meals, onsite fitness facilities, and flexible work hours. As a result, Google boasts an employee retention rate of around 90%.
2. Enhanced Company Culture
Positive employee morale contributes to a vibrant company culture where employees feel valued and supported. For instance, Southwest Airlines is renowned for its strong company culture, which emphasizes employee satisfaction and well-being. This focus on morale has led to high employee engagement levels and industry-leading customer satisfaction rates.
3. Increased Employee Engagement
Engaged employees are more committed to their work and go above and beyond to contribute to the company’s success. Take Zappos, for example, which encourages employee engagement through its unique company culture and emphasis on employee happiness. This approach has resulted in Zappos consistently ranking among the top companies for customer service.
4. Positive Impact on Mental Health
High morale in the workplace has a positive impact on employees’ mental health and well-being. A study by the University of Warwick found that happy employees are 12% more productive. Salesforce, a company known for its focus on employee well-being, provides various mental health resources and support programs for its employees. As a result, Salesforce has seen improvements in employee satisfaction and overall productivity.
5. Promotes Work-Life Balance
Organizations that prioritize high morale often promote a healthy work-life balance, leading to happier and more productive employees. According to a survey by FlexJobs, 82% of respondents cited work-life balance as a key factor in their job satisfaction.
For instance, Buffer, a remote-first company, empowers employees to set their own schedules and work from anywhere. This approach has contributed to Buffer’s reputation as a top employer for remote workers and its high employee satisfaction rates.
Is there a Relationship Between Employee Morale and Productivity?
Absolutely, there’s a strong correlation between employee morale and productivity in the workplace. When employees feel motivated, engaged, and satisfied with their work environment, they are more likely to perform at their best, leading to higher productivity levels and overall organizational success.
How Can you Measure Employee Morale?
Measuring employee morale is essential for understanding the overall health of an organization’s culture and identifying areas for improvement. While it’s not as straightforward as measuring tangible metrics like sales or production output, there are several effective methods and indicators to gauge employee morale accurately.
1. Employee Surveys
Conducting regular surveys is a common method used to measure employee morale. These surveys typically include questions about job satisfaction, work-life balance, communication effectiveness, leadership, and overall morale.
Analyzing survey responses provides valuable insights into how employees perceive their work environment and allows organizations to track changes in morale over time. For example, a survey might ask employees to rate their level of agreement with statements like “I feel valued by my organization” or “I am satisfied with my work-life balance.”
2. One-on-One Interviews
Engaging in individual conversations with employees allows managers to delve deeper into their concerns, motivations, and satisfaction levels. These interviews provide a more qualitative understanding of employee morale and allow for personalized feedback and support.
By actively listening to employees’ feedback and addressing their concerns, organizations can demonstrate their commitment to fostering a positive work environment.
3. Employee Feedback Platforms
Implementing digital feedback platforms or suggestion boxes can provide employees with a convenient and anonymous way to share their thoughts and ideas. These platforms enable continuous feedback loops and encourage open communication between employees and management. Analyzing feedback trends and sentiment allows organizations to identify patterns and areas of improvement proactively.
4. Attendance and Turnover Rates
Monitoring attendance and turnover rates can offer indirect insights into employee morale. High rates of absenteeism or voluntary turnover may indicate underlying issues such as low morale, dissatisfaction, or disengagement. Conversely, low turnover rates and high attendance levels suggest that employees are content and committed to their roles.
5. Employee Performance and Productivity
While not solely indicative of morale, changes in employee performance and productivity can reflect shifts in morale within the organization. For example, a sudden decline in productivity or an increase in errors may signal underlying morale issues that need to be addressed. Conversely, improved performance and increased collaboration may indicate a positive morale boost.
6. Peer-to-Peer Recognition
Observing how employees interact and recognize each other’s contributions can provide insights into morale levels. A culture of peer-to-peer recognition, where employees regularly acknowledge and appreciate each other’s efforts, often indicates a positive and supportive work environment. Recognizing employees who go above and beyond fosters a sense of camaraderie and boosts morale.
What are the Ways to Boost Employee Morale?
After you have measured employee morale and noticed there is low employee morale, its time to find the best ways to boost employee morale. Here are several ways to visually get everyone charged up:
1. Video Conferencing
Remote workers are badass. In-house employees are, too. Put them together, and you have one powerhouse team. The problem? If communication is lacking, remote workers can feel disconnected fast.
Think of all the cues, information, and emotions you feel when communicating with someone face-to-face. Suppose you rely only on email memos and general dial-in meetings to fill remote workers in. In that case, chances are you’re isolating them, which means productivity (and enthusiasm) takes a real nose dive.
Instead, have Skype meetings or use Google Hangouts. Sound pretty obvious? These meetings are all about consistency and content. Regular, purposeful, and powerful meetings with both in-house and remote employees will help keep everyone on a joint mission.
2. Visual Praise
When did you last say “great work” to your team?
Business owners are stressed out. Your team gets it. But an employee can only internalize so much of your stress before they don’t care anymore. While verbal praise goes a long way, the added incentive of visual praise and encouragement can motivate a struggling team member(s) to kick it up.
Keep in mind all team members can face burnout and demoralization—especially if your company is always playing catch up—but remote workers take a massive hit on the praise meter, generally only hearing back when it comes to negative/critical feedback about their work.
Going the extra mile to visually say thank you—think quick, personalized videos, a funny screenshot, or a video memo that goes out to the team praising specific individuals shows your team that you do notice. You’re willing to take a minute to guide them in a non-arbitrary way.
3 – Make Them Laugh
Your team has inside jokes—and if they like you, you’re probably in on a few of them.
We already know the power of GIFs and memes. After all, when your team isn’t feeling incentivized, you can find them scrolling through dozens of them.
Why not create your own?
If you want your team to bond and feel “part” of something, make them laugh. It takes seconds to create a GIF (if you’re using Zight, that is), and it’s also the perfect bite-sized way to humorously and/or quickly keep people updated on new information, wins, and progress on the bottom line.
4. Visually Engage, Motivate, & Entertain Employees
A few years ago, I met a restaurant manager who had operated a high-volume breakfast and lunch spot for nearly 20 years. His specialty was employee morale—and believe me when I say you’ve never seen a group of servers more excited to serve eggs and bacon.
His secret was two-fold. Every week, he put out what he called his “Tuesday Memo.” Instead of simply barking at them to upsell the bagels, he passed out the “Tuesday Memo,” which included all the company information for the week—it also had crossword puzzles about the staff, quizzes about customers, impressive graphics, and inside jokes. On the back of the memo was a sales initiative for the week. The first person to hit the goal earned a free dessert or no “side-work” for a month.
The result? Employees read the memo. Not only that, they retained the information, and they competed like Spartans for the prize.
5. Transparently Track Progress
We love goal-tracking apps—beautiful and motivating—and why apps like Strides and CoachMe are so effective. They harness the power of visualizing progress. Goals are like Pringles; once you pop, you can’t stop. When you start seeing progress, once you start achieving milestones, your brain wants to push to reach the next goal, to finish.
Where project managers and leaders usually screw up is not communicating regularly with the team about what small goals have been accomplished within a big project. These small wins are BIG in the eyes of someone who feels like they’re working in the void and can stimulate purpose, motivation, and a giant push to reach (and enjoy) the finish line.
While apps like Asana, Trello, and Slack are great, sometimes a fun, bright, and creative chart that everyone in the room can see when they look up or walk by adds the right amount of spark and connection to keep everyone motivated without having to log in and look for it.
Worried it will take a ton of time and skills to implement these morale-boosting visuals?
Au contraire, friends.
A quick GIF or screenshot only takes 10 seconds flat to create, and it doesn’t have to be polished (since it’s for internal purposes only). Ten seconds for a morale boost that lasts all business quarter or longer? We’ll take it!
Are there tools that employers can use to boost employee morale? Yes! We have mentioned some of its features above, but let’s look at it in detail because it offers an edge.
6. Professional Development Opportunities
Invest in the growth and development of your employees by offering professional development opportunities. Provide access to training programs, workshops, or tuition reimbursement to help employees expand their skills and advance their careers.
By supporting continuous learning and career advancement, you demonstrate a commitment to your employees’ long-term success and fulfillment, boosting morale and retention.
7. Flexible Work Arrangements
Recognize the importance of a healthy work-life balance by offering flexible work arrangements to your employees. Whether it’s telecommuting options, flexible scheduling, or compressed workweeks, providing flexibility allows employees to manage their personal and professional responsibilities better. Empowering employees to choose when and where they work fosters a sense of autonomy and trust, leading to higher job satisfaction and morale.
8. Employee Recognition Programs
Implement employee recognition programs to acknowledge and reward outstanding performance and contributions. Whether through peer-to-peer recognition platforms, quarterly awards ceremonies, or personalized appreciation gestures, recognizing employees’ efforts fosters a culture of appreciation and gratitude.
Celebrating achievements and milestones reinforces positive behaviors and inspires others to excel, enhancing employee morale and engagement.
9. Social Connection Initiatives
Organizing social connection initiatives fosters a sense of belonging and community among your employees. Host team-building activities, offsite retreats, or virtual happy hours to encourage bonding and camaraderie.
Creating opportunities for employees to connect personally strengthens relationships, promotes collaboration, and boosts morale. Whether through shared experiences or common interests, building social connections enhances the overall employee experience and contributes to a positive work culture.
10. Employee Wellness Initiatives
Prioritize the well-being of your employees by implementing comprehensive wellness initiatives. Offer programs such as yoga classes, meditation sessions, or onsite fitness facilities to promote physical health and reduce stress.
Additionally, provide access to counseling services or mindfulness apps to support employees’ mental and emotional well-being. Investing in employee wellness demonstrates a commitment to their health and happiness, ultimately boosting morale and productivity.
Zight for Boosting Employee Morale
Zight is an all-in-one platform designed to streamline visual communication within teams. With its intuitive interface and diverse features, Zight empowers organizations to enhance employee morale through engaging visual content.
Incorporating Zight into your team’s workflow can yield tangible benefits, including increased employee engagement, enhanced collaboration, and positive employee morale. Zight allows the team to access features that inject energy and enthusiasm into every interaction.
Let’s explore how Zight’s features can help to boost your employees’ morale:
1. GIF Maker
Ever sent a GIF that made someone smile? Zight’s GIF maker lets you do just that but with a professional twist. Utilizing GIFs and memes, which are easily shareable and relatable, can provide a quick and enjoyable way to lighten the mood and keep team members connected, even across distances.
Let’s say you’ve just closed a big deal and want to celebrate with your team. Instead of sending a regular old message, why not spice things up with a GIF? With Zight’s GIF maker, you can create a fun and lively animation of your team cheering and clapping.
It’s like bringing a virtual high-five right to their screens! And you know what? Studies show that 70% of employees find videos more engaging than text, so you can bet your GIF will put a smile on their faces and a life in their step.
Clearly, injecting humor and levity into team communications can do wonders to improve low company morale. Also, according to a study by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, humor in the workplace increases job satisfaction and enhances team cohesion.
2. Personalized Call-to-Action Buttons
Now, let’s talk about making your messages more interactive and engaging. For example, you’re sharing an update with your team about an upcoming project and want everyone involved. With Zight’s personalized call-to-action buttons, you can prompt your team to share their thoughts, ideas, and feedback right then and there.
And get this – personalized CTAs convert 202% better than default ones, so you know you’re getting their attention! It’s like giving them a little nudge in the right direction and showing them that their input matters. In addition, research from Gallup indicates that engaged teams show 21% greater profitability.
3. Screen Capture Magic
Sometimes, it’s the little wins that lift everyone’s spirits. With Zight’s screen capture feature, you can easily capture and share those moments of success and collaboration. Whether it’s a shoutout to a team member for a job well done or a snapshot of a hilarious moment from your last virtual meeting, sharing those moments can really bring your team together.
And did you know? 87% of employees believe that visual communication tools enhance collaboration, so you’re not just sharing a screenshot but fostering teamwork and boosting morale. In addition, as per a study by Deloitte, organizations with recognition-rich cultures have 31% lower voluntary turnover rates.
4. Annotation Awesomeness
Have you ever tried to explain something to your team, but it just didn’t quite click? That’s where Zight’s annotation tools come in handy. Clarity and transparency in communication are vital for maintaining morale, especially in remote or distributed teams.
Whether highlighting essential points in a presentation or adding a little flair to a project roadmap, annotations make everything clearer and more engaging. Zight’s annotation tools allow team members to add colorful highlights, comments, and annotations to shared documents or presentations, ensuring everyone is on the same page.
It’s like adding a personal touch to your communications and showing your team that you’re right there with them every step of the way. Plus, clear communication is the key to team effectiveness, so you’re not just boosting morale – you’re setting your team up for success.
5. Secure File Sharing
Providing a secure and efficient platform for collaboration enhances trust and confidence among team members, ultimately boosting morale. Zight’s file-sharing capabilities protect sensitive documents and information, mitigating the risk of data breaches.
According to a report by Verizon, 58% of data breach victims experienced negative impacts on their company’s reputation and brand image.
Imagine a marketing team securely sharing confidential campaign strategies and assets via Zight, knowing their efforts are safeguarded, fostering a sense of security and peace of mind, and ultimately boosting morale by promoting trust and collaboration.
Conclusion on the Ways to Boost Employee Morale
Remember, boosting employee morale is not just about making people feel good; it’s about creating an environment where everyone feels valued, heard, and part of a team. And Zight seems to offer just the right tools for that!
By leveraging humor, empowerment, recognition, clarity, and security, Zight becomes a communication tool and a catalyst for morale-boosting success. So why wait? Get into Zight today and watch your team morale soar to new heights!
What are you currently doing to boost team morale? If you’re visually creative, let us know in the comments below.