Success in any organization is vital and what every company desires. Having the best working environment possible is key to getting there. Over the past 10 years I've been finding out what it takes to have the best working environment possible.

I teamed up with my friends at CMOE to see what business leaders and employees thought led to successfully create a strong work environment. We asked five questions to 500+ people how to have a better working environment.

1. What are the qualities you want most in a leader?

The respondents had a list of qualities they could choose from. The most desired quality a leader can have is to be forward thinking and strategic. One is not able to lead without having a plan for the future, nor can they grow. This forward thinking and strategic mentality helps everyone involved feel comfortable with the direction of the organization and gives them security in knowing their leader is looking and planning ahead.

Employees also desire honesty and inspiration/motivation. Be honest and let everyone know your strategy. Then, inspire and motivate everyone to push that strategy forward. One part of being open and honest might be to include the members of your team in the development of your strategy. This can help others develop a forward thinking and strategic mentality for future promotions or roles.

2. What is the most important characteristic of a successful team?

This did not come as any surprise that communication topped the charts as the most important part to a successful team. Many, if not all, have experienced lack of communication and the negative effects that may have. However, it is not only the lack of communication that hurts, it is also the interpretation of messages that are sent. Effective communication occurs when the receiver interprets the message the way the sender intended.

To become happier at work be sure your communication is clear and concise and that all recipients understand. If some are confused or have a different interpretation, willingly help them to comprehend the intended message. The more messages are communicated effectively, the more trust is built with your team and organization, which is the second most important characteristic of a successful team.

3. What is the most important thing you can do to influence the success of your organization?

A successful team is dependent upon the members of that team. The best ways an individual can influence the success of their organization is by helping others learn and grow, have a positive attitude and solve problems effectively and efficiently. These were the top three of the survey and the results were fairly close.

Help others to learn and grow by first making sure they understand the vision and strategy of the company. Next, help them understand their role within that vision and what part they play or where they are needed. Give them tips on what they can do to perform their responsibilities or share lessons learned from past mistakes and successes.

While helping others grow and while at work, be sure to maintain a positive attitude. Charles Swindoll said, "I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you... we are in charge of our Attitudes."

Your attitude is your choice. Stay positive amidst challenging times or disappointments and look for ways to recover quickly. Become one of the strongest links in your team by solving problems effectively and efficiently. This not only helps the business grow, but it helps to maintain your positive attitude and keep your team learning and growing.

4. What are the best practices of retaining good people/employees?

Treating employees with respect is the third best thing to do, but is definitely needed. Show your employees you respect them by trusting them and allowing them freedom within their roles and responsibilities. You can also provide a positive work environment, which is the second best thing to do.

A positive work environment comes from learning from your mistakes and moving forward, always looking to the future. Dwelling on past mistakes or failures can bring down company morale. However, if you are constantly learning from your mistakes, moving forward and encouraging growth, you will keep the positive and forward thinking mentality alive and well within your business and company culture.

The best practice to keep and retain employees is to have effective boss and employee communication. The topic of communication has been seen in all answers of this survey and is obviously the most vital of them all.

CMOE gives three tips to effective communication:

5. How does a long-term vision help you most in your work?

The main two answers of how a long-term vision helps most in work are a) that it helps to better serve the needs of clients or customers and b) that is reduces the number of emergencies or crisis situations.

Having a long-term vision can you better serve the needs of your clients or customers by giving you a plan for the future needs and wants within your industry. Each business is providing a product or service that fulfills a need or want for customers or clients. These needs or wants evolve and a long-term strategy can help to know what these future needs or wants may be.

Your long-term strategy also reduces the number of crises or emergencies by providing a road map or plan of action. It may not necessarily outline what exactly to do when you get off track, but you will know where you need to be and can plan how to react and get back to where you need to be.

This survey reveals the importance of having a strategy and long-term vision, communicating that vision and maintaining a positive attitude and workplace. All of these are closely tied to one another. If you or your business do not have a long-term strategy, make time to get one in place. Then communicate that strategy to others and their roles within. This will help maintain the positive attitude and growth your company needs.

Published on: Dec 17, 2014