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How to Improve Your Team's Morale

By: Nathan Jamail
Posted: December 30, 2011, from the January 2012 issue of Skin Inc. magazine.

Many times in business, as in life, people’s perspectives determine their attitudes more than any actual situation does. To improve morale is to change your team’s perspective versus looking for a golden answer. Leaders of an organization can spend all their time focusing on these changes and continue to experience negative emotions, or they can choose to change the perspective of their people. Which do you think is more productive and advantageous?

In some situations, a company may hire a motivational speaker to address the group about a tragedy and, as a result, employees get motivated and may be eager to make the best of their personal situation. Why is that? What happened was a change of perspective.

When leaders are faced with low employee morale, their job is to hold their team members accountable by teaching them to be grateful before they can be successful and happy even if they are not necessarily content.

Gratefulness before success

Everybody can be grateful for what they have, but more often than not, people forget to think about the good. It is all about perspective. Smart parents tell their children to be grateful for what they have, because there is someone out there who has it a lot worse.

It does not do any good to sympathize with employees when they are complaining about workload, removal of benefits or even pay cuts. In fact, bad morale is created when leaders and workers start to sympathize with each other on the struggles or unfairness of the job. The intent of these leaders is to show compassion and empathy for their team members and hopefully help them turn around their morale, but instead they end up confirming why morale should be bad. To improve morale, your spa’s leader must change the team’s perspective. This is not a cold or insensitive approach; it is an empathetic approach that says the feelings the person has are real, but may not be helpful or have a purpose. The leader’s job is to give the team member hope and understanding—not sympathy.