Posted by Thelma Marshall, VP of Solutions, July 7, 2020
The work culture in your warehouse is either a positive influence on productivity or a negative one. Negativity on the job creates numerous obstacles in retaining well trained workers, meeting goals and sustaining profitability. But, creating a teamwork mindset has proven to be successful in cultivating positive attitudes and boosting output.
Your business may be facing numerous COVID – 19 challenges as you strategize on how to create a safe physical and emotional environment in the workspace. How well you do this will determine employee dedication, satisfaction with the company, and often, their ambition on the job.
Essentially, you need to look at what is causing workers stress as well as what is creating physical risk.
For example, how well do your warehouse employees perceive they are treated on the job? This can impact a company’s profits and growth potential.
A positive work culture can change your business and research proves it. A recent compilation of more than 70 studies found that there are three major categories that affect business growth and worker retention. Researchers identified that fairness and general supervisor support, and favorable job conditions resulted in “Perceived Organizational Support (POS)” for most employees, including those working in a stressful warehouse environment.
Another consideration is if your employees feel their contributions to the business are valued and that their employer and supervisors care about their well-being. If they feel you are looking out for their safety, and taking step to limit their risk of contracting COVID-19 while in the facility, they feel a positive connection and responsibility to help the business reach its objectives.
So social distancing measures in workspace and providing personal protective equipment not only protects workers health, it facilitates a belief that the company they work for cares about their safety. When that happens, work suddenly becomes a team effort.
Research also indicates that POS cultivates a sense of job satisfaction and commitment from workers leading to less absenteeism and greater retention of long-term workers. This reduces costs associated with hiring and training new employees, shifts that are short staffed, and overtime paid to those covering a vacancy.
As you cultivate a positive work environment, coworkers are more likely to help each other when needed. The atmosphere becomes more comfortable and is not influenced by petty competition or coworker resentment.
One study found that employees in this type of work culture provide better service without prompting and are readily willing to assist coworkers when help is needed. This results in an increase in productivity levels and achievement of goal and objectives.
Here’s a few tips for a positive work culture.
- Engage employees – Involve employees in determining areas that need to be improved. Listen to what they’re saying.
- Communicate – Misinformation and lack of communication breeds fear and uncertainty. While nobody knows for certain what will happen in the future, but don’t be a manager that fuels the uncertainty. Organizations and their managers should communicate through the crisis.
- Monitor safety- Your essential employees do not have the option of working from home. They are on-site making it happen. Focus on their well-being. What are you doing to keep people safe? For example, staggering clock in/out times so there are not large groups of employees exiting or arriving at one time.
- Use data – Telematic data will demonstrate areas in need of improvement and pinpoint successful results. For example, you can track an operator’s performance and productivity using your telematic reports and then recognize their strengths.
Data from your telematics system can help build a motivated, positive work culture. Great leaders create great organizations that adapt in times of turmoil. The key is knowing your employees’ concerns and contributions and showing them that their work matters to the entire warehouse operation.