Upsetting the boss is never on anyone’s agenda, right? Bosses can be intimidating so employees may be a bit nervous when speaking up. Don’t think that this only refers to the new people in your office. Your employees who have been with your business for quite some time can be just as intimidated to speak their opinion as your new hires. Whether they’ve been with your company for two years or two days, a belittling work environment makes getting views from your staff difficult. Your employee’s potential ideas can be critical to your business’s success. If your workers aren’t comfortable with voicing their opinion then perhaps it’s time to look for ways to create a more inviting and encouraging work environment. Keep reading to find out more.

Why The Silence

Let’s say you’re holding a business meeting and you’re starting to get worried because the actual meeting is starting to sound like crickets have invaded the room. Either that or your employees are really good at playing the silent game! You instantly get that feeling that someone has something to say, let’s be honest here, someone in your meeting is dying to actually say something. Majority of the time your gut feeling is most likely right. But why the silence? You might need to re-evaluate your business’s culture. Is your business’s environment open? Does your work environment make your employees feel comfortable? How are you taking your employees’ feedback?

The most important thing to remember here is to always treat all employees equally. Make each and every employee feel like they can always help to make a difference in the business’s success. Once you go below the surface and find out why they’re so quiet and apply changes, your employees will feel much more comfortable speaking up and you’ll increase employee engagement. Creating a more inviting company culture will attract more success to your business by making happier workers. When your employees are happy, that energy will feed off onto your clients, making them happy as well. Keep in mind that there can be multiple reasons why your employees aren’t speaking up.

Make Room For Options

Everyone works differently from one another. But the one thing that you want each employee to have in common is the ability to communicate effectively and confidently. You might need to consider a new option in order to make this a similarity for every employee. Not everyone is comfortable speaking in a group setting. Some people can feel like the spotlight is directly on them, creating pressure and discomfort which never have a positive impact on your employee’s voice. As the “boss” you might have to branch out a little. Sometimes all it takes is a little one-on-one conversation between you and your nervous employee. Perhaps, invite him/her to grab a bite to eat. By doing this you’re creating a positive relationship amongst each other and allowing him/her to express themselves. This option is always great! You never know what can come out of that one-on-one meeting.

Criticize Constructively, Not Destructively

Although criticism is an essential element to any successful business, don’t deliver the criticism destructively. Actively partake in what your employees are saying and be sure to listen to them and hear them out. Sure each and every idea might not be the best solution to the problem, but this doesn’t mean that just because the idea isn’t ideal that you have to bash them for it. By you bashing their ideas, you’re only making them feel belittled and they will never feel comfortable discussing future ideas with you again. They can also feel disengaged making them want to leave your business for good. Take a more positive route and instead applaud them for tackling the issue and attempting to make a potential change. You’ll be making them feel like their ideas are always valued and praised whether you choose their idea or not.

So, are your employees speaking up? If they are, great! It seems like you’re doing something right in your office. If they’re not, remember that the problem begins with you as the “boss” and your business culture. Do you have other tips on getting your employees to speak up? Be sure to share your tips with us by commenting below! After all, everyone works together to make the biggest and best success.

For more business tips, visit our blog. If you would like additional help, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We are the leading staffing agency that focuses exclusively on State and Local Government with a Job Search page that makes it easy to list and navigate through all open positions.

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