Human beings are generally more enthusiastic about tasks that they find rewarding. The reward could be monetary, emotional, or even psychological in terms of gaining knowledge or a new skill. It is on this premise that job satisfaction rests. Are your employees motivated to come to work or do they show up just because they have to?
When employees find their work rewarding, their job satisfaction is higher and they are more productive. However, contrary to popular belief among most employers, there is more to this conversation than just money. There are other facets of the working experience whose improvement could have a significant positive impact on job satisfaction.
Here are a few of them.
Opportunities for growth
Career growth is something that most professionals aspire to. Pursuing meaningful goals keeps them motivated and new challenges keep their skills sharp. In contrast, stagnation leads to discontentment and is thus, unsurprisingly, one of the major reasons for high staff turnover.
You can facilitate career growth for your employees through:
A professional development fund
In addition to work experience, career advancement may also require further professional training. Unfortunately, some eligible employees may not be in a position to pay for such programs on their own. It would be prudent to bridge this gap for them by establishing a professional development fund that staff can seek funds from in such situations.
Time-off or flexible schedules
Training programs demand time and dedication. Employees often have a hard time juggling work, classes, and all their other life responsibilities at the same time. So much so, that some may find it altogether impossible to sign up for such programs. Whereas if you offered them options such as study leave or working remotely when necessary, they would stand a better chance.
When positions fall vacant, consider giving priority to staff members that are qualified for them. It is a show of confidence in their work and a direct opportunity to gain career advancement. It also goes a long way in boosting staff morale.
Conducive work culture
A recent study indicates that over 54% of women experience sexual harassment at their workplace. A substantial portion of those cases involved their superiors while the rest were peers. This is only one of the toxic work cultures your employees may be facing. Others include:
- Unhealthy competitive practices
- Public humiliation by supervisors
- Gender discrimination
It is difficult to navigate a work environment where one or a combination of these factors is part of the work culture. Therefore, as an employer, it is incumbent upon you to institute a zero-tolerance policy and introduce harassment prevention training programs to tackle such issues. Staff should also be guaranteed protection and the chance to be heard whenever they need to report cases of mistreatment or violation.
The Covid-19 pandemic has seen doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals protest unsafe working conditions. The lack of PPEs places them at extreme risk of being exposed to the virus. Sadly, the lack of on-the-job safety is not unique to them. Factory workers exposed to harmful chemicals, firemen with poor medical insurance, and many other professionals face similar challenges.
Granted, every job carries its own set of risks. Your role, as an employer, is to mitigate them for your staff. Take, for example, the tough working conditions of factory workers. As opposed to subjecting them to heavy lifting and harmful substances, robots could be assigned such tasks. Processing machines can easily be tended to by pick and place robot arms which are faster and safer. Suffice to say, ensuring staff safety is not an unattainable goal.
Perks and remuneration
Endeavor to pay your staff fairly for the amount and type of work they do. Even the best employee will be discontent if they feel that their pay is not commensurate with their work. Further, commit to equal pay practices too. The recent staggering revelations of Hollywood’s gender pay disparities displayed just how polarising unequal pay can be. It would be best to avoid a replication of such a scenario at your organization.
Make an effort to also look into the health insurance packages that you offer. Aim for a coverage policy that is both generous and inclusive in what it covers. Mental health challenges, for instance, are becoming increasingly common in the workplace yet most policies do not cover mental healthcare. Additionally, consider incorporating staff wellness programs and facilities such as:
- A creche
- A gym
- Accessibility provisions
- Club memberships
In this era of digital connectivity, employees are constantly accessible through different media. The problem with this setup is that it blurs and often violates the boundaries between work and personal time. Some employees bemoan having to handle work correspondence during weekends, days off, and even at odd hours of the night. One school of thought may see it as necessary but a more lucid truth is that it is unethical.
To the best of your ability, support a healthy work-life balance for your staff. Honor their time with their families and engagements outside of work. Free them of the notion that work has to be attended to around the clock even when it is not an emergency. It is essential for their well-being and an effort that they will certainly appreciate.
In summation, the cure that you can offer your team for job dissatisfaction is care. It is not a common word in corporate circles but perhaps therein lies the problem. If more employers could care for their staff better and create healthier environments, work would be more rewarding.