All good leaders know that finding the right staff and looking after them is key to a successful business. No matter how great your products and ideas, without an efficient team you simply won’t be able to achieve your goals.

So, how do you make sure your employees work hard and efficiently? It begins with creating an environment in which they feel happy and valued.
Here are some ways to keep your workforce smiling and productive.

Create a happy environment
We’re not expecting you to go to Google levels with adult play areas and nap rooms (although you can if you like!), but creating a space where people feel happy and welcomed is a really important start. Operating an open door policy, or at the very least letting people know they can talk to you about any concerns can prevent them from becoming burnt out and de-motivated.
A good, comfortable rest area where people can take a break from front line stresses and re-energize is also invaluable productivity tool.

Let them know they matter
When people feel valued, they try harder. This is true in all areas of life but particularly so in the workplace, so it’s essential that everyone in your team feels like they have an important role to play rather than just being another cog in the wheel.
A little bit of praise goes a long way, too. Always say thank you for hard work and recognize achievements- it will work wonders with your staff retention rates and really boost productivity.

Add a little bit of variety
Doing the same thing day in, day out is boring. And since boredom is one of the biggest productivity killers out there, it’s important to mix things up a bit. Give employees the opportunity to try new tasks and step out of their comfort zones, and make setting new goals an intrinsic part of your staff review process.

Lead by example
If you want employees to respect you, it’s essential to be the best you can be. When the boss is behaving unprofessionally (and it does happen more often than people think) or always getting in late and leaving early, they’re giving employees carte blanche to do the same. Make your diary available to everyone, and if external meetings allow it, always be the first in and the last out.

Presenting yourself professionally at all times gives employees faith in you and makes for a far more productive workplace. And if there’s a crisis or tight deadline, it pays dividends to roll your sleeves up and work hard with everyone else.

Be honest
If you keep your employees in the dark about what’s going on, they’re likely to become suspicious, angry and unmotivated. People can usually tell when there’s something going on, so being totally transparent about any potential issues will get your workforce on side rather than planning a mutiny.

Offer some perks
Everyone needs a reason to go to work in the morning which goes beyond simply paying the bills, so keep your team motivated by offering some perks. You don’t necessarily have to offer bonuses to keep people happy, but employee of the month programs which recognize good work and provide a small reward can work wonders.