Josh Thompson is the founder and leader of Thompson Field Servicea construction and building maintenance company.
A question leaders should ask themselves is, “How do you strike a balance between putting people at ease and preventing people from getting too comfortable?” A leader wants his employees to want to come in every day and work towards the company goal. Making employees feel comfortable can reinforce these feelings. On the other hand, a leader does not want his employees to feel too comfortable. The work environment requires a certain level of decorum.
Encourage open communication
Encouraging conversations can help improve communication. This includes listening to employee feedback and showing that you are taking it into account by implementing employee suggestions. People feel more comfortable when they feel heard. In addition, communication can improve connections between employees, making them feel even more comfortable in the workplace.
Communication can also resolve conflicts in the workplace. Conflict creates an uncomfortable workplace and good communication can help create a more comfortable environment while keeping work appropriate.
The language leaders use at work should generally be more sophisticated than the language used outside of work. For example, while they can swear outside of work in many environments, in most workplaces that is not appropriate for employers.
Boundaries are especially important in interactions with others. Workplaces often have power dynamics and leaders need to take that into account. And no employee should ever feel comfortable harassing another employee. Talking in an inappropriate manner is a surefire way to make employees feel uncomfortable. Leaders must make boundaries clear.
Have clear expectations
Employers should establish clear guidelines in the workplace from the very beginning and establish a set of expectations from both a job and decency perspective. These guidelines should be easily accessible so that employees can refer to them at any time. Clear expectations create a sense of comfort because they allow employees to know exactly what is expected of them, and they don’t have to question every action.
Provide adequate training
Ensuring the safety of employees is of the utmost importance. This is the case for many reasons, but it can also provide work-related comfort for employees. One of the first ways to guarantee that someone is not comfortable is to not feel safe.
In my field of construction and facade maintenance, safety is a real concern. Good training is essential. However, adequate training is not just about safety. It teaches people how to do their jobs effectively, which can improve employee performance. Employers must provide a comprehensive onboarding process for all employees. If an employee feels that he knows how to do his job, he will be much more comfortable with that job.
Employees need a certain amount of comfort to succeed in their role. Providing this level of comfort is important to your business. At the same time, not all comfort is suitable for the workplace. To create the best level of comfort in the workplace, leaders must encourage communication, set boundaries, set clear expectations, and adequately train employees. By following these four tips, employers can ensure that employees have the necessary connections and knowledge to do their jobs comfortably and efficiently.