Anybody who’s been on the job hunt will have seen a lot of employers promoting themselves as a great place to work. That phrase can actually mean different things to each individual, but there are some common factors to keep in mind – both for job-seekers and potential employers looking to improve their environment. Here are the key points to consider.
Health and wellness
As we grow up, each of us should bear the responsibility for maintaining good health. While employers certainly can’t be accountable for the differences across worker lifestyles and practices in this regard – some may be chronic smokers, while others are gym rats – every workplace exerts a limited influence on employee health and wellness. Most people spend the majority of their time indoors, and for working-age adults, the bulk of that takes place in the office. Poor ventilation, for instance, can aggravate existing conditions or lead to sick building syndrome; simple measures such as regular HVAC maintenance or installing the right air conditioner drain pump can provide better airflow and remove unpleasant odours resulting from a build-up of bacteria in the system. Going beyond that, employers can take measures to provide more nutritious food options, discourage unhealthy habits, and create opportunities for exercise breaks at work with a room stocked with basic equipment.
Job satisfaction and morale
Just by stepping into an office, you can get a sense of whether the environment is pleasant or not. Yet people ultimately go to the office for work; in the long term, everybody can get a much-needed boost to their well-being if the job brings them satisfaction and their colleagues are pleasant to work with. Once again, due to personal differences, employers may not be able to accommodate every desire or smooth each interaction. But by exercising whatever control they may have, leaders can improve communication with their employees and develop a positive environment. Relationships and attitudes aren’t set in stone; employees can be coached to demonstrate how their performance is meaningful and aligned with company goals. Supporting employee initiatives and delegating responsibility gives them a chance for career growth. Respect and collaboration can be fostered with team-building activities. Over time, you can tell when an employer is making that ongoing extra effort to create a workplace culture that’s truly great for their people.
People aren’t defined by their jobs, but we instinctively feel that on some level, you are what you do. You may have felt this whenever asked about your occupation in casual conversation. In truth, there’s always more to a person than their work – in our spare time, each of us could be a dedicated parent, volunteer for charity, avid book-reader, competitive gamer, sports fan, weekend warrior, or travel enthusiast. For this reason, every employee desires a better work-life balance; we work to earn a living, but it’s essential that we have the opportunity to live the way we choose. A great employer understands this; while some concessions to increased free time are impossible to make, having an open mind and being flexible towards compromise will help workers to better integrate their jobs into the rest of their lifestyle and the roles they play outside of work.
Whether you’re coming from an employee’s perspective or trying to build a better workplace as a leader, taking these three aspects into consideration will help you understand what goes into making a truly great work environment.