A business is only as good as its employees. Studies show that disgruntled personnel are less productive than happy campers, so it behooves management to ensure their underlings – if you will – whistle while they work. Are your employees happy in their jobs? Ask. Do some of them answer “everything is fine,” yet mope around the office?
Here are four employee complaints many HR managers hear daily to help you determine if there is an unmentioned problem. Sometimes, you must see what you aren’t being told to ensure everyone is content on the job or face unproductive personnel and its related frustrations.
1. Issues With Management or Coworkers
It’s no surprise that the number one complaint of workers is either a supervisor, manager, or co-workers. Stress mounts when people don’t get along, especially if one person is bullied by another. Forbes magazine gives the example “My boss is really snippy with me, and I don’t know what to do about it,” and this example makes sense.
In sports, coaches oftentimes verbally abuse their athletes to get the best performance out of them, but this isn’t an effective management strategy in any situation. Keep an eye on everything around you, and pay attention to terse exchanges or harassment of any kind.
2. Questions or Issues Surrounding Pay
Another primary concern of employees is their pay. Will they make enough money in their job? Will their tax deductions take too much of the pay out of their checks? Who’s paying for benefits? You or them? These are good questions for anyone to ask, so be prepared to answer them. You obviously cannot control how much money the state and federal governments take out of a person’s paycheck, but you can control who pays for benefits.
To avoid any misunderstandings, make certain you or a payroll manager explains in detail how pay works in your business, including salaries and all deductions.
3. Performance Evaluations and Related Goals
Forbes explains another common employee complaint is, “I don’t think my second quarter objectives are fair. Nobody else in my department has to hit all these bars,” and whether the complaint is valid or the staffer only envisions unfair treatment, you must address this concern immediately and with an open mind.
Employees are often intimidated by the performance evaluation process and many do not like to be given set goals at all. Explain why the evaluation and goals benefit the employee, e.g. better chances for promotions, raises, etc., and if an employee expresses unfair treatment, look into it. It could be true.
4. Work/Life Balance
Finally, the quickest way to burn out your employees is to forget that they need balance between their careers and their personal lives. So do you, by the way.
Work/life balance isn’t a New Age catchphrase. It’s crucial to optimal emotional, mental, and physical health, and no one should ever work their employees “to death.” Give your staff the personal time they need, and don’t expect them to put work before family. One additional measure you can take when you consider everyone’s work/life balance is to add wellness-related coverage to your plan when you determine your business insurance needs.
If, after reading this, you don’t think happy employees are that important – after all, they’re there to do a job and you pay them for it – take into account one very wealthy entrepreneur: Sir Richard Branson. Branson is known for his love of adventure and life, and one reason why everything he touches turns to gold is because he believes in fun at the workplace.
When people enjoy coming to work and doing their jobs, they will work harder. It is that simple and if you really think about it, it makes perfect sense. If your employees count the minutes until quitting time each day, it’s time to re-evaluate your workplace.