Have a New Year’s resolution? That’s great, but they aren’t just for individuals. If you’re managing an office, you work in HR, or you own a business, it might be a good idea to pick some company New Year’s resolutions too!
Growth and monetary goals are a good start, but if you want to meet those goals, you also have to find ways to support your employees.
Here are seven New Year’s resolutions that focus on a company culture that will make your office an even better place to work in the new year.
1. Build a Closer Team
The people you work with can make or break your experience in the office. It is common for those who quit to say they left their job because of management or because of coworkers. Sadly, many issues arise and are never resolved because those who quit simply didn’t have the time to get to know the people they work with!
Building a closer team is a worthwhile corporate culture New Year’s resolution because it can increase productivity, encourage creativity, and create a more positive work environment, all while giving employees the chance to get to know each other. When your employees truly feel like a member of a team, they won’t mind getting up and coming to work every day!
One of our favorite ways to build a closer team is to plan a corporate retreat. Whether you plan an in-person or a remote gathering, a corporate retreat is a great way to give your employees a way to get closer outside of your normal work environment.
You can also create a closer team on a regular basis by making team-building activities part of your regular schedule. It might mean finding ways for your team to collaborate and work together on work-related tasks, but it can also mean playing a game, like an office trivia, volunteering together, or planning regular gatherings outside of work, like going to dinner or paying for tickets to a local performance.
2. Find Ways to Be More Inclusive
How welcome do your employees feel when they come to work? Be careful not to use your own comfort level to gauge the inclusivity of your office. There are likely employees who aren’t being accommodated, even if you and others in the office are.
Being more inclusive means digging deep and learning how to be more open-minded, as well as finding ways for your employees to discover commonalities among their differences. Fortunately, there are simpler ways to be more inclusive too.
All you have to do is ask!
Reach out and ask your employees what you and others in the office can do to make everyone feel more comfortable and included. Most employees would be happy to tell you, especially if they can tell you anonymously.
If you want to get started the right way, you can do things like:
- Create a private prayer room for employees of different faiths.
- Recognize a wide variety of holidays and provide time off as necessary.
- Create a private pumping station for new moms.
- Offer things like screen readers to make technology more accessible.
3. Support Employee Mental Health
One of the best company culture New Year’s resolutions requires you to think about your employees’ mental health. According to our 2021 survey, 58% of HR professionals identified mental health issues as the number one challenge faced by employees this year. Mental health issues have a huge impact on your employees’ personal lives, but they can also affect them in the workplace. Symptoms like burnout, stress and depression can result in poor work performance, more unexpected sick days, and high staff turnover.
The good news is that there are many ways to support employee mental health like:
- Hold informal meetings with your team to talk about stress and how to manage it.
- Learn how to recognize employee burnout so you can support employees who exhibit symptoms.
- Provide employees with the ability to participate in group fitness classes.
- Start a regular meditation class.
- Promote safety and cleanliness in the office.
4. Get Serious About Time Off
If your employees are beginning to feel burnt out, if stress and anxiety in the office are the norm, or you worry about work-life balance, it’s time to get serious about time off.
This resolution goes beyond giving employees more time off. Instead, this company culture New Year’s resolution is truly about changing the culture around what it means to take time off. Employees should be encouraged to take mental health days and there should never be any judgment or resistance when employees ask for time off.
It also means supporting employees so they actually leave work at work. Discourage them from checking email when they have taken the day off or they go on vacation, which means making sure skills among your employees overlap. That way, there’s always someone who can step up and help whenever someone is out of the office.
A positive example of what it means to take time off can also go a long way. Managers should use their time off so employees can see that taking time away from work is truly acceptable and encouraged.
5. Prioritize Open, Honest Communication
It’s amazing how many companies manage to limp along with poor communication. You can experience more success and make your office a better place to work when you prioritize open, honest communication.
If this is something your employees struggle with, consider starting with an anonymous survey. Whether you want to get honest feedback about the meeting schedule, how management is performing, or employee input ahead of the next holiday party, employees are sure to be open and honest if they can tell you their thoughts anonymously.
Choosing communication as your corporate culture New Year’s resolution could also include:
- Encouraging everyone to speak face-to-face when possible. If you’re managing a remote team, consider using a platform like Loom.
- Sticking to facts – not stories – when it comes to work topics and encouraging your employees to do the same.
- Asking for and providing feedback on a regular basis, which includes positive feedback whenever you can!
- Understanding your team’s communication style and adjusting accordingly.
6. Get Flexible
According to one study, 92 percent of millennials identify flexibility as a top priority when job hunting. Many employees would prefer flexible working options over a pay raise, and most believe that having flexible working options would make them more productive.
It’s no wonder that many company New Year’s resolutions this year will focus on offering more flexibility to employees!
Flexibility means giving employees the opportunity to work remotely, but there is a lot more to it than that. Additional flexible working options you can offer to your employees include:
- Choice of workdays
- Choice of start and stop times
- Four-day work week option
- Ability to request extended time off
- Unlimited time off
- Ability to transition to part-time
7. Focus on Food!
Not all company New Year’s resolutions have to be so serious in order to have a big impact on your workplace culture. If you’re looking for a fun and easy way to make your employees happier, focus on food!
Employees appreciate their employer covering meals and snacks because it means they don’t have to think about what they’re going to eat every day. They don’t have to pay for it either! But, feeding your employees comes with even more benefits. It’s a great way to encourage your team to gather informally and enjoy lunch together, it increases employee loyalty, and it can boost your employees’ mental and physical health if you do it right.
Offer healthy and nutritious options for lunch and make sure employees have access to things like nuts, cheese, and fresh produce so they can avoid the afternoon trip to the vending machine.
The new year is a great time to reflect on how far you’ve come, but it’s also a great time to look ahead and find ways to make your workplace better. From carving out time for team-building activities to supporting mental health and saving employees money on lunch, everyone is sure to celebrate the new year when these strategies are implemented in your office!