Small Business Growth: Tech Tools and Online Strategies

online tools

Welcome to 2024. An era defined by digital transformation and online tools. Small businesses have a remarkable opportunity to thrive like never before in this climate. And what is the catalyst for this transformation you ask? 

Technology and online tools!

Your entrepreneurial aspirations can now be nurtured through the strategic adoption of digital assets. If you’re a small business navigating the digital landscape, this article is your gateway to success.

Business growth hinges on more than just ambition. You must have an approach that includes the cutting-edge technology available in the digital era. 

Maximize your online presence

The modern world is heavily digitally dependent. As a result, an impressive online presence is non-negotiable for any business. 

Craft a magnetic website

Your online journey begins with a powerful website. This will be your virtual storefront. Modern consumers often decide to engage with a business based on their online experience. 

Therefore it’s crucial to have a website that looks good but also functions seamlessly. An outdated, clunky website can deter potential customers. Investing in a clean, user-friendly design is essential.

A slick website reflects your brand’s professionalism and reliability. It’s a valuable platform to: 

  • showcase your products or services 
  • share valuable content
  • engage with your audience

The user interface should be intuitive. Navigation should be smooth and the overall design must be visually appealing. 

online tools social media automation

Nurture your social media presence

Social media platforms serve as powerful tools for engaging with your audience. From Facebook to Instagram and LinkedIn, you must explore the best practices for building and nurturing your social media presence. This will allow your business to connect and communicate with your target market effectively.

Maintaining a strong social media presence requires consistent, thoughtful effort. Develop a content calendar to ensure regular postings that resonate with your audience. 

Engage with your followers. Respond to comments, and encourage discussions. It’s time to use social media to your advantage as a business owner.

Invest wisely

Understanding business valuation

Business valuation is the process of determining the economic value of your business. It takes into account various factors. These include: 

  • assets
  • liabilities
  • market conditions
  • potential for growth

In-depth knowledge of valuation allows you to evaluate the performance of your company. You can identify areas where improvements can be made. 

This insight is invaluable for strategic decision-making. As well as for attracting potential investors or buyers. 

Select the right tools

There is an impressive selection of digital tools available for modern businesses. From online calculators to professional software. When choosing the right tool for your business, it’s essential to consider factors such as: 

  • accuracy
  • scalability
  • ease of use 

Before you select the best tools for the job, you should run an assessment of your business’s needs. It is important to consider scalability when making an informed choice. Your chosen tool should be able to adapt as your business grows. 

Furthermore, user-friendliness is vital. This ensures you can extract meaningful data without a steep learning curve, or specialist training.

Ensure smart investments

Investing wisely goes hand in hand with this type of valuation. Knowing the true worth of your enterprise enables you to make informed decisions about:

  • expanding
  • securing funding
  • planning an exit strategy

Small businesses often lack the resources to draft complex legal documents from scratch. Investment agreement templates are made to simplify the process. They ensure that key elements are clearly defined. These include: 

  • investment terms
  • exit strategies
  • obligations

Employing these templates will reduce your legal costs. In this sense, you can click here for an investment agreement template that will serve as an invaluable tool for small businesses, as they provide a structured framework for your investment arrangements.

When considering investments and agreements, it’s vital to conduct thorough due diligence. Understand the terms and conditions associated with your investments and ensure they align with your business goals. Using well-crafted templates adds an extra layer of protection and clarity. 

They can ensure you to make informed decisions while minimizing legal complexities

online tools for seo audit

SEO strategies for small businesses

A strong online presence begins with Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

The art of SEO

SEO isn’t just a buzzword! It’s a strategy that can shape your online destiny. It’s all about optimizing your website and content to appear prominently in search engine results. Understanding the intricacies of SEO is vital for gaining organic traffic.

This will attract potential customers and outperform competitors. With the right approach, you can secure a spot on that coveted first page of search results.

SEO tools and techniques

Executing successful SEO strategies involves using an array of tools and techniques. From keyword research to on-page optimization, it’s crucial to employ the right resources. 

It is common practice to use online tools for keyword research. This can help your copywriters create the best text for your website to rank as high as possible. These include:

  • Google Keyword Planner
  • SEMrush
  • Ahrefs
  • Ubersuggest
  • Moz Keyword Explorer

To use SEO tools for your own website we recommend the following options:

  • Yoast SEO (for WordPress users)
  • Screaming Frog SEO Spider
  • Google PageSpeed Insights
  • GTmetrix
  • SEOquake

In order to create captivating content we suggest these tools: 

  • Grammarly
  • Copyscape
  • Clearscope
  • Hemingway Editor
  • Buzzsumo

As backlinks are a hugh part of SEO strategy we advise the use of these analytical tools:

  • Moz Link Explorer
  • Ahrefs Backlink Checker
  • Majestic
  • SEMrush Backlink Analytics
  • BuzzStream

These tools and techniques are invaluable for enhancing your SEO efforts and boosting your online visibility. 

The need for an SEO audit

As we are discussing the world of SEO tools, it’s essential to touch on the SEO audit

An audit of this nature is a thorough analysis of your website. It can identify issues that may be hindering your SEO efforts. An audit can: 

  • uncover technical issues
  • assess content quality
  • check for any backlink problems

Only after this audit can you make informed decisions on the best tools to increase your SEO rankings.

An SEO audit is not a one-time event. It’s an ongoing process that helps your business adapt to the fluid digital landscape. 

online tools for HR software

Online tools for human resources

Today, HR departments can use a myriad of online tools to streamline their operations and enhance employee experiences. 

Recruiting and applicant tracking

Effective recruitment is the cornerstone of building a high-performing team. Online tools like Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) simplify the recruitment process. They enable you to post job listings, screen resumes, and track candidate progress seamlessly. Tools such as:

  • Workable
  • Greenhouse
  • Breezy HR
  • Zoho Recruit
  • JazzHR

enhance your HR department’s capabilities, ensuring you find the right talent to fuel your business’s growth.

Employee management and engagement

Once you’ve built your team, it’s essential to manage and engage your employees efficiently. Online HR management tools centralize employee data, streamline payroll, and facilitate performance management. Consider tools like:

  • Gusto
  • BambooHR
  • Zenefits
  • Namely
  • 15Five

These platforms enhance the employee experience and help you maintain a cohesive, motivated workforce.

Learning and development solutions

Investing in employee growth is pivotal. Online learning and development tools empower HR departments to offer training and upskilling opportunities. Platforms like:

  • LinkedIn Learning
  • Udemy for Business
  • Coursera for Business
  • TalentLMS
  • Skillsoft

allow your business to invest in the continuous development of your employees, ensuring they stay competitive and contribute to your business’s growth.

Cybersecurity essentials

Small businesses are not immune to cyber threats. Ensuring your digital fortifications are in place is essential. 

Risk assessment and prevention

The first step in cybersecurity is understanding your vulnerabilities. Perform a comprehensive risk assessment to identify potential weaknesses in your digital infrastructure. Tools such as:

  • Nessus
  • Qualys
  • OpenVAS
  • Wireshark
  • Shodan

can help you assess your network’s security and detect vulnerabilities before malicious actors exploit them.

online tools cybersecurity strategy

Data protection and backup solutions

Data has now become the lifeblood of any business. It is crucial to implement data protection measures such as encryption and access control. In the unfortunate event of data loss, backup solutions are vital. Explore options like:

  • Carbonite
  • Acronis
  • CrashPlan
  • Veeam
  • Backblaze

to ensure your data is safe and recoverable in the face of unforeseen events.

Employee training and awareness

Your employees are often the first line of defense against cyber threats. Educate your team about cybersecurity best practices, from recognizing phishing attempts to using secure passwords. Tools like:

  • KnowBe4
  • SecurityIQ
  • Wombat Security
  • PhishMe
  • SANS Securing The Human

can assist in creating a cybersecurity-savvy workforce. This in turn reduces the risk of human error in security breaches.

Your business’s digital odyssey

As we journey through the digital landscape of small business growth, every tool, and every insight, contributes to the profitability of your business. The knowledge shared here is your compass, not the final destination. 

In this voyage, your business can become a living testament to adaptability and innovation

Your small business isn’t just surviving in the digital age; it’s thriving! 

The unique fusion of this technology and your vision is the true artistry behind your success. Your canvas is boundless, your potential limitless, in this age of unparalleled opportunities. 

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Mental Wellness: Key to Small Business Growth

mental wellness

Running a small business means you have a lot on your plate. You’re likely focused on finances, marketing, and outcomes. But there’s a critical part that you might be overlooking: the mental wellness of your employees.

Why does this matter?

A 2022 survey found that 92% of workers had mental health issues affecting their job. That same survey also queried people about the biggest problem, and the overwhelming answer —78% —was burnout.

So message is clear — if employees are not mentally well, it affects their performance and the overall company’s success. Good mental health means more engaged and productive employees. Ignoring it, however, can lead to bigger productivity problems.

Continue reading to find out more.

Why It’s Important to Address Mental Health in the Workplace

Emotional distress in the workplace isn’t just an individual’s concern; it’s a broader issue that affects the entire organization. When employees experience emotional distress, their ability to perform tasks efficiently, collaborate with colleagues, and contribute positively to the work environment diminishes.

This can lead to mistakes, missed deadlines, and strained team dynamics.

Furthermore, unchecked emotional distress can escalate, resulting in increased absenteeism and higher turnover rates. This not only disrupts the workflow but also incurs additional costs in terms of recruitment and training.

It also matters to the employees. In a recent survey, 8 out of 10 workers told the American Psychological Association that they consider employer support for mental health important when looking at job opportunities.

So in essence, addressing mental health is not just about supporting individual well-being but also about ensuring the overall health and productivity of the business.

The Tangible ROI of Mental Wellness Initiatives

Investing in mental wellness initiatives in the workplace offers clear, measurable returns that can significantly benefit a business. Here are three tangible ways these initiatives provide a return on investment:

  • Lower turnover rates. Employees who feel mentally supported are more likely to stay with a company. When employees leave, businesses face costs in recruiting, hiring, and training new staff.
  • Higher productivity. A mentally healthy employee is often a more productive one. When employees are free from excessive stress or emotional distress, they can focus better, make fewer mistakes, and complete tasks more efficiently. This means projects get done faster and to a higher standard, directly benefiting the company’s bottom line.
  • Reduced absenteeism. Mental health issues are a leading cause of missed workdays. Providing support and resources for mental wellness can help reduce the number of days employees take off due to mental health concerns.

The Intangible ROI of Mental Wellness Initiatives

While the tangible benefits of mental wellness initiatives are clear, there are also several intangible returns that, though harder to measure, are equally crucial for a business’s success. Here are three key intangible benefits:

  • Positive company culture. When a company prioritizes mental wellness, it fosters an environment of support and understanding. Employees feel valued and cared for, leading to a more positive, collaborative, and motivated workplace. This kind of culture attracts top talent and encourages existing employees to give their best.
  • Enhanced brand reputation. As mentioned earlier, companies that prioritize employee well-being stand out. Customers, partners, and potential hires often prefer to associate with businesses that have a reputation for caring about their employees. This can lead to increased customer loyalty, better partnership opportunities, and attracting high-quality recruits.
  • Boosted innovation and creativity. Employees who are mentally well are more likely to think outside the box. As a result, they’ll suggest innovative solutions, and contribute creatively to projects. A mentally supportive environment allows employees to share ideas without fear, driving innovation and setting the company apart from competitors.

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Real-World Success Stories

These are the true stories from businesses that have seen positive results by prioritizing employee mental health.

Johnson & Johnson

Johnson & Johnson introduced the Healthy Mind program, which educates employees and their families about mental health. The company regularly checks on employees’ mental health and assesses workplace risks, leading to action plans if needed.

Both management and workers get training on spotting issues and how to handle them, covering topics like stress, bouncing back from challenges, and balancing work and life. There are also support programs for urgent situations. According to the company, the program immediately affected their retention rate in a positive way.

American Airlines

American Airlines, a leading airline service provider, has set up a thorough mental health support program for its employees. This not only helps workers get the support they need but also keeps costs in check for the company.

They review the program monthly and have improved how clinicians report results. This has boosted employee involvement at work, which is essential for pilots and flight attendants, two professions known for their solitude and burnout risk.

Actionable Steps for Small Business Owners

Taking care of your employees’ mental well-being doesn’t have to be complicated or costly. Here are some straightforward steps you can take to make a positive impact:

  • Introduce Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs). Consider implementing EAPs, which offer counseling and support services for employees facing personal or work-related challenges. These programs can provide your team with the tools and resources they need to cope, leading to a healthier work environment.
  • Promote mindfulness training. Mindfulness practices, like meditation and deep breathing exercises, can help reduce stress and improve focus. Offer workshops or bring in experts to teach your employees these techniques. Even dedicating a quiet space in the office for short breaks can make a difference.
  • Implement flexible work arrangements. Recognize that everyone has different needs and circumstances. Studies show that when employees have little control over their work schedules and tasks, they are more likely to experience depression, as well as stress, burnout, and tiredness.
  • Encourage regular breaks. Encourage your team to take short breaks throughout the day. Stepping away from the desk, even for just a few minutes, can help refresh the mind and reduce mental fatigue.
  • Open lines of communication. Make sure your employees know they can come to you with their concerns. Regular check-ins or feedback sessions can create an environment where employees feel heard and supported.
  • Offer good health insurance. Providing quality health insurance helps employees address their mental health needs. Make sure to negotiate a competitive insurance package that allows them access to professionals and treatments without the stress of high costs. In turn, a mentally fit workforce may reduce your liability and thereby decrease your premiums.

mental-wellness-of-your-employees

How to Implement Mental Wellness Programs

Implementing mental wellness programs in your business is a lengthy process. Here’s a straightforward guide to get you started:

1. Assess how everyone feels and what they need. Instead of introducing programs right away, take stock of the current mental health landscape in your organization. Conduct anonymous surveys or hold focus group discussions to understand the specific needs and concerns of your employees.

2. Set goals. Determine what’s the aim of your mental wellness program. Whether it’s increasing retention, improving productivity, or enhancing overall employee well-being, make sure you know exactly what the collective is moving towards.

3. Collaborate with experts. Consider partnering with mental health professionals or organizations. They can provide valuable insights, resources, and training to ensure your program is effective and tailored to your business’s needs.

4. Design the program. Based on your assessment and objectives, design a program that addresses the specific needs of your employees. This could include workshops, counseling sessions, mindfulness training, or any combination of these and other initiatives.

5. Communicate with employees. Once you’ve designed the program, communicate its details and benefits to your employees. Ensure they understand the resources available to them and how to access them.

6. Leverage technology. Technology can make it easier for you to set up and track mental wellness efforts in your business. With the right software, you can monitor progress, schedule wellness activities, and even provide online counseling. This doesn’t just reduce paperwork but also encourages your team to use these resources. With this tech approach, you’ll have a smoother and more impactful mental wellness plan that’s good for both your team and your business.

7. Monitor and adjust. After implementing the program, regularly monitor its effectiveness. Gather feedback from employees, track participation rates, and measure against your set objectives. Use this data to make necessary adjustments and improvements.

Conclusion

Mental wellness is essential for both employees and the small businesses they work for. When employees feel supported, they work better, and the business grows. As times change, leaders must prioritize their team’s mental health and prevent burnout from occurring. A happy team leads to a successful business.

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5 Practical Ways To Improve Employee Performance

employee performance

In today’s fast-paced and competitive business environment, companies must continuously find ways to improve employee performance. A workforce that is motivated, engaged, and performing at its best is key to achieving business objectives and driving growth.

However, improving employee performance can be a challenging task, especially in the current climate of remote work and changing business conditions. A recent survey found that only 32% of American workers are engaged at work, underscoring the need for employers to concentrate on employee performance in order to enhance engagement and productivity.

Developing a culture of performance excellence is an integral part of any strategy for improving staff productivity. In this post, we will delve into five practical ways to improve employee performance that you can implement today.

Invest in Employee Training

Investing in employee training is an excellent strategy to increase job performance. Employees who participate in training programs are more likely to acquire the expertise and information they need to perform well at their job positions.

First, you’ll need to identify any skill gaps. This is the area where the employee lacks the skill or knowledge to do a certain task. Once skill gaps have been identified, you can then provide relevant training opportunities.

One way to do this is to utilize employee training software. The employee training software can help you deliver training to employees efficiently and effectively. The training is done online, which is convenient for employees and saves businesses time and money. The employee training software can also track employee progress and provide reports to managers, making it easy to monitor employee training and performance.

employee performance

Establish Clear Expectations

The most fundamental step in improving employee performance is to establish clear expectations. When workers have an idea of what they are, they are more inclined to dedicate their efforts to meeting those needs.

In order to establish clear expectations, you’ll need to communicate performance standards. These standards are the criteria by which an employee’s performance is measured. They should be objective, fair, and consistent. By communicating performance standards to employees, they will understand what is expected of them and how they will be evaluated.

Finally, providing regular feedback and coaching is essential for establishing clear expectations. It’s best to provide specific and constructive criticism, focusing on areas where employees can improve. Coaching should be ongoing, helping employees develop their skills and abilities to meet performance expectations.

Encourage Open Communication

Encouraging open communication is essential for improving employee performance. When employees have open lines of communication with their supervisors, they’re more willing to provide constructive criticism and ideas for improvement. Creating a culture of transparency is a great way to encourage open communication. You should be open and honest with your employees about business objectives, performance expectations, and other important information.

Providing channels for feedback and suggestions is also important for encouraging open communication. Managers should offer employees opportunities to provide feedback and suggestions. This can be done through surveys, suggestion boxes, or regular check-ins with employees.

Regularly checking in with employees is another way to encourage open communication. If you as a manager put in the effort to check on your employees regularly, you’re encouraging feedback from them on any issues you might not be aware of. Regular check-ins can also help employees feel valued and appreciated, which can improve motivation and performance.

employee performance

Offer Flexibility

One of the leading reasons for poor performance in the workplace is a lack of autonomy. In addition to other forms of independence, workers value the opportunity to adapt to changing circumstances.

Flexibility is not seen as a bonus by the entering staff; rather, it is a core policy. However, it doesn’t mean that your employees will be able to come to work whenever they please, rather that they will feel like they have a choice and some leeway to choose their working hours. Not attempting to micromanage is another part of this.

Even so, it takes more than just a shift in attitude and approach to the way a business operates in order to provide flexibility for its employees. Recognizing that each worker is unique is just as important as introducing guidelines that are adaptable in order to create a policy that works for everyone. The definition of flexibility, and the motivations for seeking it, are very contextual.

Recognize and Reward Achievements

Recognizing and rewarding achievements is a great way to improve employee performance. This can be done through public recognition, such as announcing achievements at team meetings, or through private recognition, such as sending a personal note of thanks to an employee.

Providing incentives and rewards for high performers is also important for improving employee performance. Financial incentives can include bonuses, commissions, or profit-sharing. Non-financial incentives can include extra time off, flexible work arrangements, or professional development opportunities.

Celebrating milestones and achievements is another way to recognize and reward achievements. Celebrating milestones, such as an employee’s work anniversary or completing a big project, can help employees feel valued and appreciated. Celebrating achievements, such as reaching sales targets or completing training programs, can help motivate employees to continue performing at a high level.

Final Thoughts

Improving employee performance is essential for the success of any business. By implementing these strategies, you can create a culture of performance excellence that drives success and growth. Improving employee performance is an ongoing process that requires continuous effort, but by investing in employees, businesses can achieve their objectives and thrive.

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7 Strategies to Increase Your Employee Wellness Within Your Company

business owners

7 strategies to increase your employee wellness 

Employee wellness is the key to having a successful business. If you don’t take care of your employees, then it is for sure that they won’t take care of you either. 

According to a late study done by IBM in late 2020, only 46% of employees claimed that the company they work at supported them physically and emotionally. At the same time, 80% of executives claimed that they are supportive, but employees didn’t always state the same! 

It isn’t a good idea to leave your employee’s wellness behind, and that is why in this article, we will show you seven strategies to increase your employee’s wellness. 

  1. Recognize your employees 

By recognizing your employees, we mean recognizing all of their efforts and achievements made daily at the workplace. 37% of employees claimed that recognition was very important to their emotional state at the workplace. Let’s not forget that employee recognition is considered the most important driver of great work out of all! 

You may have thought it was the salary, but only 7% of employees stated that salary was their most important driver at work. Once employees feel like they are not being recognized at the workplace, they may start not operating at their maximum capacity. 

We can take an example as if you were going out with a bunch of friends, and many of them weren’t appreciating you. Once you feel unappreciated, you will look for new friends. The same case is with employee recognition. 

There are many ways to make your employees feel appreciated. For example, you could start a recognition program that not only applauds their professional achievements but also pays attention to their personal milestones. Or, consider providing perks such as a nutritious, low-calorie meal delivery service that shows you care about their health and daily convenience. This kind of thoughtfulness can boost morale and show your team they are truly valued.

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  1. Set up an employee giving campaign to assist employee wellness

Setting up an employee giving campaign is an excellent way of making your employees feel proud of the company they work at. Some of the greatest companies worldwide create employee giving programs. By doing this, you are an excellent example for other employers to look at. 

Employee giving come in different types, which are

  • Employee donation matching: when the employer is matching cash donations with the contribution of the employee. When the employer provides a matching gift, it makes a bigger difference for non-profit organizations or even recipients who donated. 
  • In-kind donations: donations made through material possessions such as food, medical supplies, and clothing. Usually, employees who don’t have money to do any donation matching may turn to in-kind donations. 
  • Employee do-good grants: Employee grants are when a company rewards its employees as donors. Instead of the employee receiving financial rewards, they transfer these rewards to a non-profit organization. Of course, employee do-good grants are given as a choice if they want to participate in it or not. 

  • Employee volunteer grants: something your employees need to apply to. There are two different types of volunteer grants: Grants for volunteering expenses and dollars for doers. 
  • Grants for volunteering expenses: employees apply for any grants to support their volunteering opportunities. Most companies will cover travel expenses, food expenses, and some other costs. 
  • Dollars for doers: a financial grant is rewarded to employees depending on their committed hours- whether it be for a local community or non-profit organization. 
  1. Communicate with your employees 

Don’t be that person who only comes into the office and talks about your employee’s daily duties. We know you are at the workplace, but let’s try to make it more interesting. Try to connect with your employees by asking exciting questions such as how their day is going? What plans do they have? And some other questions you may think of. 

According to a study done by the Harvard Business Review, it was shown that 23% of employees claimed that their manager isn’t good at communicating and that it is more likely to impact their mental health. 

Additionally, about 33% of employees also claimed that they don’t trust their employers. This all comes from a lack of communication with employees. When a company conducts excellent communication with its team, employees will feel more informed, motivated, and secure. Whereas this directly affects contribution levels towards the company’s goals

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  1. Don’t burn your employees out 

No, it isn’t smart to overload your employees with work and think they will be productive all the time. This is just you planning for failure in your company. 86% of employees claimed they need to work really hard to prove to their bosses that they are hard workers and deserve their job. You don’t want to be that person who is expecting too much from employees.  

Rest is just as important as hard work is too. Sadly, 45% of employees claim that they are burned out at the workplace. You can’t work hard and never rest, it just doesn’t go that way. Promoting wellness at the workplace also means encouraging rest too. Especially if your team is working remotely, you don’t want to make them have sleepless nights because of the overloaded work you are asking them to do.

Try planning out your activities or setting up daily tasks that need to get done. Each employee has their own pace at which they get work done, so try to see what works for you and them. 

  1. Allow employees to discover themselves to promote employee wellness

Nothing can be better than being an influence on your team that will directly impact how they feel. You can’t motivate anybody enough until they motivate themselves, although you can be a good influence. When you are helping employees find their purpose, that self-drive will start to kick in by itself. 

According to research done by Delivering Happiness, they found out that there are three levels of happiness: 

  • Pleasure: the fleeting form of happiness 
  • Passion: happiness that continues as long as you are performing the activities that are fulfilling your passion. 
  • Purpose: the highest level of happiness that fuels your daily life with energy and joy. 

The best thing you can do for your employees’ well-being is empower them to have passion and purpose. Here is what you can do to help them find their purpose:

  • Find their intrinsic motivation (goals, what drives them.) quotes for growth mindset
  • Try implementing a set of activities that will lead them to work on what impacts their well-being as part of your wellness activities. 
  • Be a motivation coach to your employees. Empower them as human beings, and allow them to act as champions. 

You would be surprised that 85% of employees are not engaged at the workplace. Different factors affect this, although the leading cause is the lack of motivation. 

  1. Promote flexibility for employee wellness

Technological innovations have greatly impacted the way we work and significantly have affected how employees feel. Since the pandemic’s beginning, even the way we work has changed and how employees want to work. According to a survey, 73% of employees stated that they were more efficient when working remotely. 

After the release of the COVID-19 vaccine, many employers urged employees to return back to the office, although this wasn’t pleasant for the majority of them. Roughly one in three employees claimed that returning to the office negatively impacted their well-being. At the same time, workers who experienced a decline in their mental health were also five times less likely to be productive! 

  1. Encourage financial well-being to improve employee wellness

Financial well-being has negatively affected a vast percentage of people across the globe after the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many have had a cut in their salary or even have been temporarily laid off; what seemed to be going well turned into a nightmare in a short period of time. 

According to a financial wellness survey by the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI), it claimed that most employees had to engage heavily on their emergency funds from the start of the pandemic. Nothing gets more stressful than that and negatively has impacted the emotional and physical well-being of employees across the globe.  

Many employees got comfortable working from home and even left their job when asked to return to the office. This was all because they felt that their well-being was being affected negatively and just wasn’t worth it. Moreover, it was a wrong move from employers as they didn’t seek to do what was best for employees but only for themselves. 

Wrapping up your 7 strategies

That’s about it for this article. These are the seven strategies you can use in order to promote employee well-being and a culture that is firmly focused on employee well-being. 

From the beginning of the pandemic, we know that everything has gotten more difficult for employees and employers. For that reason, employee well-being has become just as hard as it was to keep up with. Although, in turbulent times also lies opportunity. And without a doubt, these seven strategies will be your aid to making your employees happier than ever! small business coach

Ways to Boost Employee Engagement

employee engagement

Are you looking for ways to boost employee engagement? Employee engagement is defined as the strength of the emotional and mental connection an employee feels towards their work. This includes their perception of their workplace, their peers, as well as the nature of the work they do. So, it’s no surprise that the more engaged an employee is, the more likely they are to remain at a company. On the flip side, employees that feel detached from their work are more likely to leave. They can also prove detrimental to the company, as disengaged employees are often less productive and more likely to miss work.

Ways to Boost Employee Engagement

Therefore, building a workforce with a high level of employee engagement is one of your major priorities as an employer and a leader. This is not only good for your business, but also your employees’ well-being. In line with that, here are five ways you can boost the current level of employee engagement in your company:

  1. Implement a recognition and rewards system

Acknowledging and rewarding employees for their stellar performances is a powerful way to boost engagement. It makes them feel like their contributions are valuable and encourages them to keep up the good work. Plus, there are multiple ways to reward employees, from simple verbal affirmations to grander incentives like compensation bonuses or attendance to exclusive training programs.

But then there’s the question of when you’re actually going to reward high performers. One recommendation is to offer rewards immediately after you learn of your employee’s achievement. Why? A study on reward systems found that people who received rewards immediately after completing small tasks showed more eagerness and enjoyment in their work. This is in comparison to people who received rewards only after they completed a long project. Additionally, the individuals who were rewarded early remained interested in their tasks even after their rewards were removed. As such, researchers concluded that there is likely a lasting positive effect between rewards and job satisfaction. So, don’t be stingy with giving your employees when it comes to recognizing their achievements.

  1. Create a healthy working environment

Let’s not forget that the physical environment plays a huge part in determining your productivity and stress levels. Employees are more likely to enjoy their job if they think of the office as comfortable and conducive for working. This, in turn, will improve your employee engagement and their performance levels.

One thing you can do is alter the workplace. Creating more open spaces can encourage conversation and collaboration among employees. And if your office doesn’t have enough space for that, simply enacting an open-door policy can foster a more welcoming environment, especially around company executives. But don’t forget that it’s equally important to provide spaces for quiet time. Break rooms can serve as relaxation areas where employees can take a breather. Meanwhile, multi-purpose rooms can be utilized for quiet time when they aren’t already being used for meetings or other events. By providing spaces for both work and rest, you’re giving your employees more power to control their productivity levels. And if you’ve gone digital, you can apply this by providing the right technology or even ergonomic furniture.

  1. Pay attention to your employees’ financial wellness

Finances are a huge part of everyone’s life, and it’s no secret that financial problems can cause stress. This, in turn, can affect other facets of their life, including their job. This financial stress could very well be hampering employee engagement. And while this isn’t directly a management issue, there are a few things you can do to help your struggling employees.

Implementing financial wellness programs for employees can be a big help to those struggling with money matters. It’s also a huge step towards creating a more financially resilient workforce. One area you can focus on is their personal debt as it can cause a lot of stress.

First, lessons on debt management should mention what types of debts they should prioritize and discuss all the debtor’s options. For instance, they can reach out to their creditors to request that they freeze interest and other charges. They should also be made aware that not all personal loans come with sky-high fees. If a loan applicant had a better understanding of their options, they could avoid paying too many fees and interest while barely scratching the surface when it comes to paying back the loan. Interest rates are one of the reasons consumers have a hard time paying off their debt in full, which could push them further into debt. But by bringing in finance professionals who can give them practical advice, your employees can understand their finances much better. And as the person who encouraged them to take charge of their money management, this could have a positive effect on their engagement at work. This financial professional can also suggest filing a consumer proposal, which can be a better alternative to declaring bankruptcy, depending on your employee’s current situation.

  1. Provide opportunities for feedback

Feedback is a two-way street that is vital to your company’s growth. Creating avenues where employees can share their opinions lets them know that they’re heard and that their voice holds weight. On the flip side, providing your feedback on employee performance shows that you’re hands-on in your management approach, which can encourage employees to strive for better performance. Plus, reports that are filled with positive comments tend to boost employee engagement.

That said, make sure you don’t neglect running through your employees’ points of improvement, as this is necessary for their professional growth. If possible, provide constructive criticism with actionable tips that they can use to improve on for their next project. As for individuals who require disciplinary action, consider opting for a more proactive alternative — progressive coaching. This method involves guiding and encouraging employees rather than simply punishing them. It provides them with the opportunity to improve their performance while also avoiding more stress and tension in the workplace. Progressive coaching is deemed an effective alternative to harsh discipline, especially since it can improve the employee retention rate. In short, clear and constructive feedback does wonders for employee engagement.

  1. Promote a work-life balance

Employee engagement also improves when individual employees are given ample time away from work. This is where the importance of a work-life balance comes in. Everyone needs some ‘me time’ to rest and recuperate. And you need to remember that your employees aren’t robots that can work nonstop. So, take this into account when planning projects and employee schedules.

If you want to take a more active role in helping employees achieve a healthy work-life balance, enact company policies and set realistic work expectations that enable them to lead more balanced lives. This can include allowing for flexible work hours and implementing paid time off policies. As the employer, you should also encourage your employees to take breaks, especially if work is taking a toll on their health. Don’t forget to take breaks, yourself as well. Because if you want to improve employee engagement, you need to be in the right state of mind.

These are just a few ways to go about improving employee engagement in your company. But while good working environments and healthy company policies are vital, these are ineffective without management that genuinely cares for its constituents. To build a workforce that is dedicated to the company, company executives should also be dedicated to promoting the growth of their employees.

Written by Ashley Parker

For the exclusive use of smallbusinesscoach.org

 

small business coach