An office relocation is a golden opportunity to refresh your staff, upping their productivity and helping them feel engaged. Yes, business relocation can be stressful but, done right, it doesn’t have to mean a chaotic loss of funds and output; it can mean a renewed, revived and determined group of employees, all eager to give of themselves and improve the business.
When you announce to your team that you are all moving into a new office, their eyes might glaze over or look bright and involved. This gives an indication of their level of boredom and motivation and how much work it might take to revive their interest in their work. Bored, unmotivated personnel are not good for a business. They can drag it down with absenteeism and lack of productivity. Office removals can be just the boost they need to feel re-engaged and come back to life. You can have the best moving checklist in the world, but none of that matters if you have a thoroughly turned-off team.
Let the Relocation Excite the Team With Refreshments, Activities, and Involvement
First, involve your employees. Don’t make the office move a simple a set of instructions. Have an early meeting, well in advance of the moving date, and ask them what they think. How do they envisage their ideal working space? What don’t they like about the current set-up? Allow them to be frank and detailed and let them know that their input can help shape the new space, that their desires will be taken into account, except where impossible.
Next, make sure your employees have room and facilities for play in their new environment. From now on, vow that you won’t have them hunched over hot, airless computer terminals all day. Opportunities for play can include table tennis, video games, a rock-climbing wall, board games. Let them build friendships with one another during dedicated break periods. In addition to breaks, in their new environment encourage them to spend five minutes away from their computers every 45 minutes. Those five minutes can still be spent in work-related activity. They can stretch as they pick up some documents they need to take to the scanner, for example.
Business relocation is a chance to create a really good kitchen with a decent coffee machine (no instant) and well-stocked cupboards. Many companies have made the mistake of cutting back here during lean times. It’s not a good move. When hard-working employees can’t enjoy themselves briefly at a decent snack station with a water-cooler and more, their morale starts to spiral downwards. Go one step further, and provide some good-quality foods for them, and you’ll be rewarded with an upward turn in output and morale. During crunch-times, employees will no longer be resentful about working through lunch and into the evening.
Curb the Temptation to Overwork Your Employees
Once your office relocation is underway, it’s a chance to gauge whether any of your team is being overworked. That has to stop. A good work-life balance is important for everyone. Employees should not have to pretend to work as the office stays late, waiting for someone else to leave first. From now on, unless there is a situation or a deadline, people should arrive and leave in accordance with their contracts. Think about the example you yourself set. Do you overlook important events like the kid’s soccer games while you stay late at the office? Or do you do what’s right and put family events first? Determine if there is anyone on your team who is burning the candle at both ends and help them. If one person is attempting to do more than their job requires, it could be time to take on another member. Moving office is the perfect time for boosting your team’s morale, so don’t miss out on it.
This article was contributed by James Harrison who works as a business relocation consultant.