High-stress work environments often result in frequent employee turnover and low productivity. Though stress is an inescapable reality of office life, there are ways to bring positivity to your workplace without softening your organization’s work ethic. Stress is debilitating when it is not addressed in healthy ways. To encourage a healthier and more appealing work environment, here are four ways to bring about positive change in your business.

Authentic Gratitude

Author Alexa Thompson writes about ways managers and supervisors can thank employees in a sincere manner. She advises taking small and subtle approaches, such as an email acknowledging a staff member’s contribution to a project or a positive mention at a staff meeting.

Employees sincerely appreciate it when their work is recognized and acknowledged. Positive feedback goes a long way. When given sincerely, other employees begin to acknowledge others. Gratitude is an extremely cost-effective way to increase productivity and teamwork.

Mentoring and Connections

Many business managers are aware that employee tenure is short-lived. This makes some organizations hesitant to provide training, support or other forms of professional development. Despite the perception of a low rate of return, organizations that pair new employees with more seasoned employees notice their new employees stay because mentoring builds a connection with the organization.

Loyalty towards one’s employer builds productivity and improves a company’s reputation. On the other side, loyalty to an employee improves employee relations and encourages a healthy work environment.

Solution-Focused Thinking

Years ago, businesses focused on team building. Teams attended retreats that promoted playful activities with the purpose of building connections and team bonds. Today’s employees understand that real-world teamwork involves collaborating on solutions. Such a shift requires a change of thinking, not a way of acting.

David Cooperrider and Suresh Srivastva developed a solution-focused thinking process called Appreciative Inquiry. The process involves considering the available resources, assessing past positive outcomes, shifting from deficiency thinking to solution-thinking, envisioning the future and finally, collaborative design and delivery phases that move toward a solution.

Resiliency and Happiness

Some organizations hire happiness trainers as a way to shift organizational mindsets from negative to positive. Whether your organization chooses to go this route or not, it is wise to consider the relationship between resiliency and happiness. Stress happens and is often unavoidable. Workers who are able to cope with stress are those who nurture resilient behaviors. These behaviors encourage positivity and increase employee happiness and productivity.

Originally posted on JasonWalkerPhD.com

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