Running a business is a tricky endeavor. Sometimes it can feel like you’re juggling flaming swords while dancing on a tightrope. One poll found that 33 percent of business owners reported working more than 50 hours a week, and an added 25 percent said they work 60 hours or more per week. Working long hours comes with the territory, but you can take measures to make your business operate more efficiently. Here are three things to do to help things at the office go more smoothly.
Make Business Easier With Cloud-Based Software
It’s 2018, so you don’t have to use bulky filing cabinets to keep track of everything that’s happening within your company. Technology is changing the way businesses conduct business. Cloud computing is especially powerful, according to the Harvard Business Review, which wrote about the cloud earlier this year, saying, “In particular, new ways of writing and deploying software will encourage new types of faster-acting organizational designs.”
These “faster-acting organizational designs” can work for virtually every business. The cloud can provide fleet maintenance software for trucking companies as well as restaurant management software for the hottest dining establishments in town. We’re just at the beginning of the cloud computing era, and there’s no telling what else it will be able to pull off by the time everything is said and done. Such software helps businesses trim the fat and better serve its customers as well as its employees.
Keep the Office Kitchen Stocked
What’s the key to keeping the people who work for you happy? Is it a good salary? Plenty of paid time off? Decent health insurance? Those are all important, but the real answer might be much more basic. As USA Today put it, “The key to happiness at work is free snacks.” A survey conducted by a grocery delivery service found that places that provide snacks have happier workers than places that don’t. Only 16 percent of employees surveyed said they get such snacks at work, so you can really set yourself apart by stocking the kitchen with treats that are sweet as well as savory.
The free food is especially important to millennials. Millennials like grabbing free chips and popcorn from the office kitchen, but they also really like coffee. If employees know that there’s free food and coffee waiting for them in the office, they’ll come into work with a spring in their step. That’s why you should buy coffee lover gifts for your employees, including things like monthly coffee subscriptions to ensure the espresso supply never gets too low.
Encourage Honesty Among Employees
Lots of business owners say they want to be honest, but when push comes to shove, they’ll punish employees who attempt to provide constructive criticism. Employees who feel as if they can give truthful feedback will be more likely to come to work ready to knock out that day’s work with smiles on their faces. Employees who don’t get that feeling, though? They’re going to come into work feeling depressed and anxious, and that’s before they even sit down to log into their work computer. Good morale translates into high productivity.
You can measure employee engagement by giving them polls and not punishing them for their answers. If you tell employees that poll results are anonymous, then you should stick with that. Don’t make your IT staffers spend hours tracking down the person who gave answers that you didn’t like. Instead, use employee surveys as an opportunity to check on the health of your company. The healthier your company is, the more efficiently it will operate.