How to Improve Workplace Behavior

A team participates in trainings.

Company culture — and more specifically, workplace behavior — plays a large role in your business’ revenue growth. A Gallup study shows that businesses in the top percentile for employee engagement were almost five times more profitable than businesses in the bottom percentile.

This means that taking the time to develop a winning company culture can go a long way in improving team productivity, employee satisfaction, customer retention, and ultimately your bottom line. Here is how to encourage appropriate behavior that inspires your employees to put their best foot forward every day.

Start with the Hiring Process

Building a better company culture starts with your new hires. Take time to choose candidates that share your values and mission to decrease the likelihood that team members will exhibit negative or even unethical behavior in the workplace.

Having one badly behaved team member can lead to lower team morale and negatively affect your team’s productivity and work quality.

How to hire the right people:

  • First, get extremely clear about your company culture and values.
  • List these desired traits in your job description to attract the right candidates.
  • Ask candidates about their professional values and the company culture they hope to have.

Provide Ample Feedback

You can’t help employees improve their workplace behavior if you don’t provide them with frequent, honest feedback. Most employees need help understanding what they need to improve.

Feedback can also help employees feel more confident and satisfied in their roles, which often translates into less-frequent employee turnover. Companies that provide employees with consistent feedback — especially if it’s delivered with high caring and empathy — report about 15% less turnover than their counterparts.

How to provide employees with more constructive feedback:

  • Offer employees coaching or mentorship opportunities with a senior leader in your company or their manager.
  • Be specific about which behaviors are unacceptable as they happen, and also point out what your employees are doing right.
  • Give feedback often in one-on-ones and throughout the year. Don’t wait for the employee’s quarterly review.
  • Use feedback surveys to get your employee’s thoughts about workplace behavior, too.

Improve Team Communication

Great communication is essential for every successful business — and especially when you’re working to improve behavior. Strong communication enables your employees to gather the information they need to feel more secure in their roles and better understand how their team members work.

It also helps build better, more trusting relationships. For example, perhaps there is tension between team members over the creative direction of a project. One team member doesn’t feel like his ideas are being heard and this results in him lashing out or getting angry. Instead of ignoring the matter, strong communication enables your team members to confront the issue and work it out professionally.

How to improve team communication:

  • Build a company culture that values listening and collaboration.
  • Provide employees with regular communication training to hone their communication skills and keep them front of mind.
  • Be transparent with your employees and encourage open dialogue about company initiatives and goals.

Lean On Your Managers

You can’t expect employees to exhibit exemplary professional behavior in the workplace if your managers aren’t modeling this behavior themselves.

Studies show that leadership has the greatest influence on team culture and workplace behavior. In addition, your managers understand the most about what’s going on with their employees on a day-to-day basis.

How to lean on your managers:

  • Make it clear which behaviors are acceptable and which are not.
  • Provide managers with regular communication and feedback training.
  • Help your managers develop their own professional values.

Reward Beyond Compensation

Make sure employees are regularly rewarded for their hard work — and don’t wait until review or promotion time. You want them to know where they stand and be rewarded often.

This helps keep star employees performing well and give others the motivation to join them. It also helps struggling employees try harder and be more focused and productive.

How to recognize employees for a job well done:

  • Give public acknowledgment for a job well done, such as in front of their team or the entire company.
  • Provide your employees with new responsibilities and projects.
  • Add perks to the mix, such as company swag, gifts, raffles, and games.
  • Host company parties and social gatherings for achieving specific milestones.

Make Encouraging Better Workplace Behavior Your Priority

When your employees perform better, so does your business. Ensuring your team prioritizes better workplace behavior is just one of the ways your companies can be even more successful now and for years to come. Learn about the latest work culture trends with expert hiring and management advice from Monster.