Workplace negativity can threaten the success of a business. Negativity affects morale, it eats up time which could be spent being productive and could have an impact on employee retention. A recent report by BreatheHR highlighted that 1 in 5 Brits left a role due to a toxic workplace culture. Getting it right is important, these are our top tips for reducing workplace negativity and increasing staff wellbeing.
1. Give Employees a Voice
Creating an environment where no one is allowed to have their say or raise a complaint won’t eradicate negativity. It may make it worse. How we behave and feel has an impact on those around us. Workplace negativity can bleed into how we feel outside of the workplace and quickly create a culture of complaining, unhappy employees. Finding the root cause of the negativity and addressing that is your best bet.
Giving staff the opportunity to raise their concerns is beneficial, however these concerns need to be raised with the correct people within the organisation. Communication is key so give employees plenty of opportunity to express their feelings and take on board feedback whether it be positive or negative. Setting up a feedback system to ensure concerns and positive comments are shared with those who have the ability to implement change should reduce complaining and negativity as a whole whilst increasing overall staff wellbeing. By giving employees the opportunity to give suggestions towards big company decisions, a sense of inclusiveness occurs which leads to a greater investment in the business. Check out our post on employee engagement apps for a few mobile friendly solutions for employee feedback. Negativity can occur when decisions are made about a person's role, without their involvement in the process a feeling of loss of control can take place.
2. Employee Engagement
Engaged employees are happy and motivated. Employee engagement is a term which covers employee satisfaction and motivation. Implementing a reward and recognition scheme leaves employees feeling that their contributions are valued which is a huge morale boost. Rewarding positivity is an easy way to reduce workplace negativity. It also has the added bonus of attracting and retaining top talent as you are demonstrating how you appreciate your workforce and value staff wellbeing.
3. Trust Your Team
A lack of trust is extremely obvious and micromanaging can lead to low motivation levels with employees feeling that they can not work to their full potential. To ensure employees feel trusted, keep them up to date and informed regarding important changes within the organisation. Allowing your staff members to get on with their work without needing to constantly report back will generate an increased sense of trust and has the added bonus of higher productivity rates. An additional benefit is managers will also become more productive as less time will need to be spent engaging in micromanaging people. Trust works both ways, when you start to trust your employees, they will start to trust you which can encourage open, honest communication.
4. Make the Workplace a Positive Place
It is easy for anyone to become negative when they feel undervalued with no plans for progression. Employees will have a more positive outlook when there is a bright future ahead of them and are aware of opportunities within the company. Offering training helps foster a culture of growth within the business. Building team spirit by trusting employees to work together rather than needing to seek constant approval from managers will create a healthy supportive atmosphere where everyone enjoys working.
5. How to Manage a Negative Employee Attitude
Knowing about and understanding the reasons surrounding the workplace negativity is the first step in fixing the problem. Talking with and listening to employees will help you understand what is happening and how this could be impacting the business. Try to identify the particular employees that are feeling cynical and understand why they are feeling this way to enable you to address the issues. It is very difficult to improve any situation within the workplace if you don’t understand what is going on.
Reinforce any positive attitudes and interactions that happen within the workplace. When negativity does arise, find the root cause and focus on creating a solution rather than discussing what the problems are. Place staff wellbeing at the forefront of everything you do and you will be more likely to foster a positive, productive workplace.