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Employment Tips

How to Create a Positive Work Environment
By:Janice Davies

In any office where there's commission salesperson, there's the potential for a battlefield. However that doesn't need to happen. Strategies can be incorporated into the office environment that fosters exceptional working conditions.

Depending on the number of your staff, there's often the situation of some people forming cliques and office friction occurring. There's a variety of reasons for this, including gender, age, cultural and personalities. However, involving some 'bonding' activities can help to eliminate this.

Create a Team Spirit

In a team where people are working together competitively, it's essential to incorporate activities that foster unity and healthy relationships.

You've probably heard the saying "A team that plays together, stays together". Well that's also the case in creating comradeship. Here are a few tips to do that.

Socialise together - Organise a regular time when you can share some fun times together. Try different restaurants, have a group booking at the latest movie, attend sports events together...even re-create the progressive dinner.

Exercise together - Start a sporting team that enters competitions. It may be ten pin bowling, the local half marathon, or plan to walk one of the local walking tracks. If there's nothing suitable, challenge a local business group to a top team competition where you have a variety of unusual activities (remember the Top Team television programme).

Help the Community - Find a project or people in your local area that need assistance and get involved in charity work. You can organize a concert and donate the proceeds, sponsor people in activities or paint a house for an elderly resident. There's loads of alternatives and there's the universal law of what 'you give comes back to you in greater amounts'...so it opens you to abundance flowing back into your life.

Value Fellow Members

Research from the United States and Europe reveal that the easiest and best way to create the 'feel good' factor is give a compliment. Heart beat monitors have proven this and it's as easy as sharing words of appreciation.

This also lets people know that they are valued and reduces any barriers of discord that may crop up in the office.

It's important when giving compliments that they are genuine and from the heart. It's easy to pick up on falseness. These can be given either face to face at the appropriate time, or at a weekly sales meeting, or people draw a name of another member of staff from a hat, to pay a compliment to. A copy of it can also be displayed on a board in the office or on their desk. People re-create the 'feel good' factor whenever they re-read them.

One important message for the receiver is for them to 'thank' the person who gives them a compliment, rather than 'shrug it off' as unimportant. Society once deemed it as derogatory to accept one's good. Thankfully the importance of this gesture has been recognized, especially in the matter of boosting one's esteem or belief in themselves.

Awards and Prizes

These are great for creating a positive environment and lots of variety for other ideas on this theme. Here's one: each staff member donates a dollar per week and from the draw (which people must submit an entry about a good deed from a fellow worker) a name is picked and that person wins the weekly coffee shout. You can also create some fun, with people bringing unusual gifts (home grown tomato, baked cake or balloon for everyone's desk) to include some light-hearted 'blackmail' so they're entered in the coffee draw.

Top Salesperson Award

Some offices may have this idea and it gives people something to strive for. However a word of warning. A real estate client I coached continually won this award. She was a grandmother who had started her real estate career by default. As a people's person, her natural manner was to help people and she'd been doing it naturally for over 60 years...in fact, an expert. Other staff members asked for her secret. "I just help people" she answered. Unfortunately, people started to disbelieve her. This caused her grief because integrity was important to her. They had also started eliminating her from some office activities, when she came to me for coaching. We analyzed the situation and she learnt about herself and her personality, then her co-workers. The situation improved for awhile, however a year later she was working for another company who were benefiting from her expertise.

Sharing stories

People only usually become acquainted with each other when they first start working together. Consequently there is lots about each others past that they are unfamiliar about. I.e. where they've travelled, sports achievements, hobbies, or past goodwill deeds.

To add variety at meeting have people (draw a name from hat again) and be nominated for the next meeting to share something about themselves. It may be they've visited the Taj Mahal and were in awe of the architecture, the love story behind its creation and the reason for their journey to visit it. Any of the above or a heartfelt story about
something they've sacrificed for to achieve or a shared success or the funniest moment of their life, are all strategies to create harmony and positive vibes in the workplace. The added bonus is people improve their skills in public speaking and boost their esteem level.

The above tips may not be new, but try sharing the organization of them, rather than dumping it on one person. This will also have a motivating effect. Positive people work in optimistic environments. Eliminating ego and working from the heart, will have a constructive affirmative edge to your workplace situation, thus creating a harmonious team.

Janice Davies is The Attitude Specialist, who teaches people to be positive and empower themselves.

Janice is the founder of the global movement International Self Esteem annual awareness day and features in the True Happiness DVD.

Janice has an online products featuring about attitude, goals, stress, happiness, relationships and more.

Visit http://www.attitudespecialist.co.nz for other complimentary articles and tips.

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