Creating a positive work environment is essential to business success. A negative work environment can cost your business 16% in profits due to lower productivity levels in employees.

If you’re concerned about the happiness of your employees, you need to start with understanding employee needs. By implementing a few changes and using communication, you can increase employee morale and keep everyone productive and happy.

Creating a Positive Work Environment Out of a Negative Work Environment

Determining Employee Morale


You can determine employee morale by paying attention to their attendance. Unhappy employees are more likely to show up late or not at all. They’re also more likely to miss deadlines or give less than their best to projects.

Let employee morale get too low and you’ll see an increase in employee turnover. 58% of people are willing to take a pay cut to find a more fulfilling job.

Lack of employee satisfaction usually stems from two main causes.

  1. Employees don’t understand their role in your company.
  2. Employees feel under-valued.

Luckily, both of these issues are fairly easy to resolve with the strategies listed below.

Listen to Employees

To understand what will work best for your business, you need to meet with employees. This includes implementing empathy-based listening. You want to understand their feelings about the role they play in the company.

Let employees discuss their concerns and their career goals. Take time to understand what they want to get out of their job and what they believe they have to offer by exchanging feedback with them.

Learn what they need from you to succeed. Explain what’s needed from them to reach their goals. Make sure promotion policies are clear so they know what they can achieve.

Provide Training Opportunities



You want to make sure your employees have everything they need to succeed, including training opportunities. This includes training to succeed in their current role. It also includes additional training for advancement.

Give employees the option to grow their skillset. This will show them they’re valued members of the team. If people know they have opportunities to better themselves, they’ll want to prove their abilities.

Create an Inviting Space

People are more willing to show up each day if they feel comfortable in their environment. This includes letting in more natural light in, hanging artwork and allowing employees to add homey touches to their personal space.

Use pleasant items to decorate work-spaces, such as inviting colors, plants, and comfortable collaborative spaces.

This also includes providing amenities for employees. Larger companies can provide daycare to working mothers or a gym to promote healthier lifestyles. Even a break room or quiet space can go a long way in fostering a more positive workplace.

Promote Team-Building Activities

Your employees come from different backgrounds and have different personalities. To help them succeed as a team, you need to provide opportunities for everyone to get to know and understand each other.

You can implement team-building activities that allow employees to learn how to work together among themselves and with management.

Increase happiness by also having special celebrations, such as holiday or birthday parties. Give employees time to socialize outside of the normal workday so they can get to know each other. You will slowly see your workplace begin to feel more like a community.

Recognize Employee Success


People want to feel appreciated for the work they do. They’re paid to do the job, but you can give incentives to go beyond just a paycheck. Use these incentives to show employees you see when they go above and beyond.

These incentives can take many forms. You can provide bonuses for exceeding sales or give praise for productivity goals. If goals are met, incentives could include giving employees additional days off or the option to leave early on Fridays. You can also create employee-of-the-month programs to recognize hard work.

Sometimes just telling your employees you are grateful for all of the work they do or complimenting them on a project they completed works perfectly well when it comes to boosting morale.

Implement Work Management Programs

It’s important to make sure employees understand what’s expected of them. This includes understanding what projects or aspects of projects they’re responsible for. That’s where a work management program can help.

You can use work management tools to assign tasks and follow up on progress. A good program will also provide a place for employees to ask questions or share concerns so they better understand their role within specific projects.

Use these programs to help them set goals for themselves. Provide feedback or checklists that help your employees see their progress so they can continue to stay motivated.

Check Management’s Attitude

If your management team has a poor attitude, this will trickle down to the rest of your employees. You want to make sure management understands their role just like everyone else, and that they have the resources they need to help their teams succeed.

Ensure that you have people in management that care about their team. You want managers that give credit and praise to those who are doing great work and listen when someone on their team has an issue or challenge.

Look for managers that are strong, positive leaders. Hire people who are happy and willing to come to work; they will influence their teams to do the same.

Resources for Positive Environments

If you want to change a negative work environment, you need the right tools to get started. One tool is coaching for your management teams. Give them the resources they need to support your employees and contact Eric Maddox today for a consultation.