Relationships between employees and management are of substantial value in any workplace. Human relations is the process of training employees, addressing their needs, fostering a workplace culture and resolving conflicts between different employees or between employees and management. Understanding some of the the ways that human relations can impact the costs, competitiveness and long-term economic sustainability of a business helps to underscore their importance.
Employee Collaboration and Workplace Culture
Human relations in the workplace are a major part of what makes a business work. Employees must frequently work together on projects, communicate ideas and provide motivation to get things done. Without a stable and inviting workplace culture, difficult challenges can arise both in the logistics of managing employees and in the bottom line. Businesses with engaging workplaces and a well-trained workforce are more likely to retain and attract qualified employees, foster loyalty with customers and more quickly adapt to meet the needs of a changing marketplace.
Improving Employee Retention
The quality of workplace relations is critical to employee retention. Employee retention may seem trivial – especially in a workplace that is used to a high turnover – but managers must remember that turnover is financially very costly. Every new employee requires a substantial investment of time and energy in their recruitment and training.
In addition, severing ties with old employees can sometimes be challenging, especially if the circumstances are not particularly amicable. Making sure quality employees remain interested and engaged in the business requires patience, compassion and flexibility, but can actually make the business more financially sound.
Motivation and Productivity
Workplace relationships provide a source of employee motivation, which is important to maintaining productivity. Employees who are interested in their work and in the well-being of other employees tend to be more productive than those who are not. This productivity pays obvious financial dividends to the company, as it can get more done in less time with fewer costs. Building relationships, by both recognizing an employee’s value to the company and a concern for their needs, often goes a long way.
Fostering Employee Creativity
The modern business environment often rewards businesses that are able to quickly develop products that meet changing consumer needs. In some industries – such as technology, for example – employees’ ability to come up with effective new ideas is often the difference between the entire company’s success and failure. Employees’ creativity is often dependent on their ability to communicate with other employees and share ideas. Without quality workplace relationships, employees are less likely to be able to develop and share the solutions that a business needs to survive.