How to Boost Team Morale in Times of Difficulty

The complexity of human behavior makes workplace culture challenging for most companies. In fact, it takes a great number of leadership skills to successfully manage a diverse group with different personalities, backgrounds, experiences, and capabilities. One of these challenges at work that may seem like a minor issue and yet tough to execute is maintaining healthy team morale.

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What is team morale? It refers to the emotional state, the drive, the outlook, the confidence, and the humor within a group inside a workplace. Great team morale reflects enthusiasm and positive energy when getting things done. 

Low team morale means energy is sapped, confidence levels are spiraling down, and members are unhappy. It is commonly the result of continually changing the team goals, setting unclear expectations, wasting talent, developing Impostor syndrome, and getting a low income and poor company benefits.

It’s a given that any workplace will have its own set of work pressure. While there’s no easy way to resolve these, having an engaged group can certainly lessen workplace negativity. 

Now more than ever, business leaders are looking for more opportunities and strategies to build team morale after it’s been found to increase the likelihood of better employee performance. When a team is performing at its best, there’s also a higher chance of elevating and improving business processes, which can then result in higher profits. 

If you’re a business leader, here are ways to boost the team morale at your company.

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1. Maintain Transparency and Open Communication

Team communication is essential to ensuring that everyone is on the same page. Transparency is key to this, and your department needs to be updated with what’s going on at work. You may also ask for their suggestions to let them know you value their opinions as a part of the company.

2. Offer Flexible Work Hours and Remote Arrangements

A flexible schedule enables employees to maximize their work hours, relieve work-related stress, and stay productive. You may offer them several schedules to choose from when reporting to the office during the workweek. Another option is to offer remote/offsite work arrangements. Not only will this help towards alleviating commuter stress, but it will also lessen family-related stress such as not having to worry about an elderly parent or a sick loved one back at home.

3. Establish a Sense of Purpose and Ownership

A third way to improve team morale is to make your employees feel a sense of purpose and ownership at work. Discussing your company’s mission and vision is a great way to foster workplace inclusion. Follow this through by reinforcing why and how each employee’s job, big or small, fits the big picture. Not only will this create a powerful image in their mind as to why they are there, but it will also help them understand that they are indeed contributing to a larger good. 

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4Identify and Work With the Strengths of Your Employees

To identify strengths, you may ask your employees to take the Strengths Finder test.

Identifying individual strengths will make work delegation easier for you, and your employees will be motivated to perform when work assigned to them falls within their best capabilities. Every time your employees do a job well, congratulate them. If they fail, choose positive reinforcement over harsh criticism

5. Share the Company’s Testimony

Testimonies are a powerful way to inspire people. You may share about the company’s humble beginnings and struggles, and how the dedication of its employees led it to where it is today.

Encourage new hires to strive to become part of the company’s proud history. This is also quite effective in rebuilding the team morale.  

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6. Avoid Frequently Shifting Goals

Shifting goals can be detrimental to your employees’ morale and can add to the negative workplace culture. It dismisses your team’s previous and ongoing efforts, just to entertain a new set of goals that will invite adjustment and new challenges. Strive to set short-term goals that can change once accomplished; but for long-term goals, it will serve you well to leave them be.

7. Celebrate Your Team’s Success

Celebrating your team’s victories will go a long way in managing stress at work and keeping the tension to a minimum. No matter how small or big the accomplishment is, make time to personally congratulate and recognize the high performers.

You can schedule a group lunch to show them how much the company appreciates their excellent work and dedication. 

8. Inculcate the Value of Self-Efficacy

This means encouraging your team to have the mindset that they are all effective in what they do and that they are quite capable of maneuvering their way around any challenging task. 

To inculcate this trait among your employees, show them how to use management tools and have them go through a series of training and seminars, which will equip them and develop the skills they need to become even more competent in what they do. 

9. Achieving a Healthier Lifestyle Together

How about building your team’s morale through sports? Give out free gym passes and head to the gym with them after work, where you can engage in sports or exercise together.

You may even organize a sports festival or a fun run every other Saturday or whenever you like. This is also one of the best ways to encourage a healthy lifestyle.

10. Bring the Fun to Work

Other morale-boosting activities for your employees may be fun office games, particularly when it’s been a hectic week for everyone. You may ask your Employee Engagement unit to organize and schedule the activities at any time of the day. Keep the games short, and prepare prizes for the winners. 

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As they say, there will be no leader if there is no team. When you appreciate your team and they know you support them, they will love the company like it was their own. If you feel your group may be lacking the energy to stay productive, then it might be time to start asking those low team morale-related questions and act on them as soon as possible. 

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