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Influencing employee morale in the workplace

Company morale describes the overall feeling that employees experience at work. They’re the little things that uplift your mood, work perks, so to speak. Company morale should complement the culture, add to it, and create a work environment that reflects it. A boost in morale is what makes coming to the office a little more fun and enjoyable, and a little less serious and routine – which is exactly what I want this blog to feel like. I want to break away from our usual, industry-focused posts and paint a lighthearted and personal picture of how the Worldmedia Interactive team and I come together to invest in keeping employee morale high and making sure it never loses its momentum.

With fourteen years under my belt working here, it’s only natural that I know a thing or two about how to boost employee morale. My official title within the agency is eCRM Manager, but my unofficial one, which I take very seriously, is that of “Sr. Employee Morale Captain.” My unofficial job description includes a variety of duties like designated DJ, events coordinator, party planner, and happy hour cheerleader, to name a few.

At the end of the day, it can all be summed up to one phrase: I make sure our employees are feeling motivated, appreciated, and comfortable to break from the work norm, and celebrate their achievements. I influence other members of the team to get excited about working here, always keeping the agency’s vision, actions, and values in mind. Wondering how a day in the life of Worldmedia Interactive’s Morale Captain typically looks like? Read on.

Every morning, as soon as I walk through the doors, I can catch my first whiff of what has been boosting employee morale since the dawn of time. This essential element is the smell of fresh brewed and much needed coffee. Yes, I’ve been known to brew the best coffee and sometimes that is my redeeming quality when people start complaining about my playlist preferences. The phrase ‘You can’t please all of the people all of the time’ has never been more true than when it comes to the music selection at the office. Since I am designated DJ, I shamelessly admit I can indulge myself, particularly on a Friday afternoon, when I force our team to listen to House music. Not long into a playlist, my Skype messages will start blowing up, with colleagues begging me to turn it off. I just giggle and leave it on for a while longer, and then usually switch it up to R&B. That’s a music genre that most of us can get into (some more than others). There’s always that person who will know each word to every song and sing aloud without a care in the world. These are the people who truly embody the openness and trusting space that is felt throughout the office. Being able to sing at the top of your lungs American Idol style, takes a certain level of comfort that our agency is lucky to have. Also, the collaborative open seating arrangement facilitates an icebreaking environment where everyone gets comfortable with each other sooner rather than later.

Speaking of comfortable, let’s move onto wardrobe, which according to the Worldmedia Interactive handbook is “Casual Professional.” In the past, when I ran out of casual attire near laundry day, I would step it up with whatever was left in my closet. These improvised outfits were leaning more toward professional, rather than casual. For a while, it was a bit comical, because I would throw people off. Staff would ask, “Do you have a client meeting today?” or “Have you run out of laundry?”. What I found myself doing, was walking a little taller and feeling like a million bucks on those days. After a while, the questions were fewer and I realized my “Captain” qualities were unintentionally at work here. The more you do it, the more it influences others to look their best at the office. I personally believe that taking attire seriously is just as important as the focus spent on clients. This special focus is at the core of our agency’s culture in respect to our clients.

This company has been known to push the envelope when it comes to boosting morale around the office, especially when it comes to holiday parties. As the Captain, I can attest to all the thought and special attention given to celebrations here at the agency. With every holiday, there’s an opportunity to create a party that will be better than the last. It can sometimes be a daunting task for me, as some employees have gotten spoiled over time, and expect superior entertainment year after year. Nevertheless, that doesn’t stop me from running wild with the credit card (under my given budget, of course) and picking the most spectacular venue and the best food, with the ultimate goal of having everyone dancing and enjoying the positive vibes at the end of the night.

On Halloween, we celebrate decked in our best costumes. On Thanksgiving, we have a potluck where gluttony is expected and appreciated. But we don’t have to wait for national holidays for us to rejoice in our hard work. Like many agencies, we celebrate a week of hard work with Friday happy hours that allow our team to unwind, connect with peers, and celebrate our achievements. This is a luxury, not a right, and we know it. What can I say? We work hard, we play hard, drink a little, and get things done.

Boosting morale may seem like a simple job, but you’d be surprised how easily it can be overlooked in a busy work environment, like an ad agency, where there is a shared struggle to bring in new clients and pressure to create amazing things every day. I’m not biased or anything, but Worldmedia Interactive has gone above and beyond at making people feel good. We value our employees, our work, our freedom, and our collaboration. We move forward no matter what. We are proud and eager. We put in those extra hours, no complaints. We are constructive. We take everything to the next level. And we like to have fun. Lots of it.

Every day, even if it’s by including someone’s favorite song on a playlist or bringing your sleepy coworker a colada on a Monday. The culture at Worldmedia Interactive is felt and shared by everyone at the agency. It’s what keeps our morale up, our music loud, and our cups of coffee always full.