Being a boss does not mean acting like a parent and treating your employees like your kids.

Okay. We admit, there are some similarities – including negotiating snack breaks!

You have to know where to draw the line between being their friend and being their boss. You can’t have favourites. And you have to know how to treat them well to get the best out of them. And keep them happy in the workplace.

Because when your employees enjoy working with you, when they feel respected, appreciated, and valued, they will always give you their best. Making your business thrive and your office a happy place to be.

If you need a little help coming up with ideas to make your employees as happy as a kid eating ice cream in Disneyland, then, as always, we’re here to help.

1. Always have their backs

Supporting your team is crucial.

When you are in charge of a team, no matter how big or small, you are the most important person to them at work. How you treat them can effectively impact their career. And supporting them in a situation where something has gone wrong is paramount.

If your employee comes to you in a state because of a blunder, or a difficult customer has upset them, then stick up for them. As the boss, you should never pass the blame onto your team. It’s an easy way out and one that will show your employees you’re happy for them to face consequences alone. Take what has happened onboard and work with them to find a solution. If they’ve made a mistake, support them by working through it and showing them how they can avoid such mistakes in the future. Don’t place blame and always strive to forgive mistakes. We’re all human and we all make them.

Similarly, if you receive praise from clients for a job well done, share the reward of praise with your team and let them know their great work contributed to this brilliant response.

2. Treat them

This article is all about treating your employees well. But here, we’re talking about really treating them. By rewarding them.

Rewarding your employees shows them your appreciation and that you recognise them and their hard work. And this can improve office culture, create better communication and reduce employee turnover. And the best part is, it doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money – and sometimes, none at all.

Recognise celebrations such as birthdays, holidays, engagements, baby announcements, bar mitzvahs…you get the idea. Have they done a great job recently with a project or a client? Then show them! Something as small as a round of drinks or ordering pizzas and a few positive words from the boss is all it takes. Or a handwritten note to individual team members can mean the absolute world to an employee.

Why not make treating your employees a regular thing? Plan office parties for Christmas, or BBQs over the summer, or treat them to lunch every now and then. If you can afford it, a bonus for a job well done will make your employees feel on top of the world and give them the determination to work harder and make you proud.

3.Take time for them regularly

Just like in any relationship, we all need a little one-on-one time. And to be listened to.

Take time for each of your employees regularly and listen to them. Take their opinions into consideration (especially when you ask for them). Make your team feel valued by being appreciative of their hard work, and if they have a problem, let them know that they can always come to you to share their thoughts.

When you take the time to listen to your employees (and we recommend doing this regularly, not just once in a blue moon), it makes them feel seen and heard. And it shows them that their boss actually cares about them. This helps build strong personal relationships within the business and advocates communication. When employees know they can come to you, their loyalty to you will grow stronger, making them want to stick around and do their best work for you.

What can I say? It’s a win-win!

4.Have a sense of humour

A giggle, a chortle, a guffaw, or a chuckle should be regular sounds heard in your office. And if they aren’t, then the jokes on you!

Having a laugh with your employees and allowing your team to enjoy themselves makes for a successful work environment. A workplace with no humour and employees who are afraid to have a chuckle with each other does not a happy company make. Having a laugh improves office morale and creates a positive workplace for your employees.

And when people feel happy, they will naturally work better, bringing the entire mood of the office up. Enjoying a chat and a laugh with your team can also help reduce stress (they don’t say laughter is the best medicine for nothing!). It can take the pressure off for a bit and help avoid burnout.

When your team is relaxed and able to have a good time at work, it will lead to a more productive workforce. Especially when different levels of team members can enjoy a giggle together. Sharing a relaxed office with your team will help promote trust and make you, as their boss, more approachable.

So, go on. Tell us a joke!

5. Don’t underestimate the power of office snacks!

We’re very serious about this tip!

Recent research has shown that office food is an emerging trend of employee satisfaction. To put it simply; snacks = happiness. And don’t we know it?

Not only do they have the power to make your employees smile and feel appreciated, but providing snacks can lead to high productivity levels. Why? When snacks are provided, your employees don’t have to waste time leaving the office several times a day to go on snack or coffee runs. Plus, if they’re feeling frazzled then a healthy snack will help perk them up and make them ready to crack on.

Making office-provided snacks a great business investment!

Not to mention that access to free food at work increases employees’ happiness, and saves them money, making them more likely to want to do a great job (and tell people about it!). Who wouldn’t want to brag about their boss providing free fruit, sandwiches and cake? Yum.

6. Treat them like adults, not schoolchildren

Ugh, we hate this.

So you want your employees to be happy, but you treat them like they’re still at school. We’re talking about giving a disciplinary for being 5 minutes late to work. Or making them ask for permission when they want a break. Or forcing them to clock in and out.

If you do this, then we need words!

Respect breeds respect. And by treating your employees like school kids, you’re saying that you don’t trust them to make the best choices for them and the business. Your employees aren’t children – they’re valued staff members and need to be treated as such.

If you are worried about giving an inch and them taking a mile, then you need to work on your trust issues. You hired these people for a reason. Because you believed they would do a great job for you. Well, they won’t do a great job if they feel like they are being micromanaged to within an inch of their life!

Let them make decisions. If they come in late one day because of personal reasons, then no problem. They can make up the time another day. They will appreciate the trust and space. Treat your employees with respect and they will return the favour. Treat them with respect and they will want to be respectful of you and your business.

7. Just be nice to them

Okay. We know this sounds so simple. But it is amazing how many bosses forget that a little bit of niceness goes a hell of a long way. And for some crazy reason, being nice is often perceived as being weak in the business world.

Well, we say “get lost” to that piece of archaic nonsense. You can be kind, thoughtful, and caring while still being respected and admired. You can care about them, and we mean really care about them and still inspire them to get amazing results. Make sure you are inclusive and fair. Keep your team in the know and out of the dark when it comes to business decisions and growth. This will keep them calm and feeling secure if any big changes are coming up.

Because when you’re nice to your team, happiness will reign. Which will do wonders for your company.

And remember. Happy employees are naturally more creative, communicative, and productive. They are also more likely to hang around for the long haul with less chance of quitting – making them loyal to you and the business.

See? It pays to be nice!

Happy employees = happy company

If you’ve ever Googled “how to make your employees happy” then, hopefully, we’ve been able to come to the rescue.

These seven easy ways to make your employees happy at work are a surefire way to boost morale, make them feel valued, and create a lovely, buzzy vibe in your business. But if you find you still need some extra help with office morale, or if you’re hankering for advice for other office issues, then the stress stops here!

Get in touch with The HR Consultants and let’s have a chat about how we can help you create a positive work culture, and make your team inspired and excited to do the best job possible.