All over the world, apathetic employees run rampant in the workplace. You know, the ones who despise their job and hate going to work every day. They can have a toxic impact on the organisation. Not only are they unproductive, but they negatively influence others as well. You as a manager have the power to change this. All you need are the tools and knowledge to motivate your employees.
Before I divulge, let me first start off by stating that money is not the only motivational factor. Yes, more money is nice, but far too often it is a short-term fix. Once that check has been cashed and the money spent, that bonus is far forgotten. If you can motivate your employees every single day by implementing several of these strategies, you will see a drastic improvement within your organisation.
Lead by Example: The best leaders lead by example. In order to push others to greatness, you must first do it yourself. Set the standard and expect your employees to match it. If you don’t practice what you preach, why should your employees follow you? If you expect your employees to show up on time, but you constantly stumble in late, would your employees appreciate that? Probably not. Earning the respect of your organization is crucial. If you’re hardworking and passionate about the job or mission at hand, more than likely, so will your employees.
Recognise Achievement: When your employees succeed, let it be known. Don’t delay the recognition. The more prompt, the more effective. An example of this would be a simultaneous office applause. Typically, employees feel that employers don’t give nearly enough praise. Break the mold and identify those who excel!
Provide Real-Time Feedback: Employees want to know how they are performing on a consistent basis. Giving them feedback, whether positive or negative, lets employees know what they are doing is of importance. But keep in mind, praise publically but reprimand privately. No one wants to be embarrassed in front of their co-workers for poor performance. Giving negative feedback in private will earn you respect and trust from your employees. On the flip side, positive feedback in front their peers will give the employee confidence and motivation to perform.
Make Work a Game: Competition can fuel motivation. Everyone enjoys the feeling of winning. Try to create contests within the workplace that utilise teams rather than individuals. Not only does this create healthy competition, but it also enhances team spirit and a level of passion in the project or assignment at hand. An example would be a point system for the number of sales, or the highest degree of customer satisfaction.
Give Leadership Roles: Employees want to feel that they are making an impact. Rewarding individuals with more responsibility attributes to a feeling of greater importance. Giving additional leadership roles also stimulates the individual by providing a diverse work experience. No one enjoys doing the same old boring work every single day.
Arrange Social Gatherings: Every now and then, going out with co-workers can be quite enjoyable. Arrange a staff softball game, or even a holiday party. Giving employees the opportunity to socialise in different settings can relieve much needed stress. Furthermore, the bonding and rapport building leads to a positive work environment.
Provide Reasonable Challenges: Show confidence in your employees by giving them tough, but reasonable challenges. Identify their strengths and weaknesses and present these challenges accordingly. If the employee succeeds, it can return great personal and organizational dividends.
Trust in Your Employees: Entrust your employees with tasks without micromanaging. They will more than likely strive to succeed if they are responsible for the delegated work. Not only does it motivate them, but it can also act as an evaluation for a future promotion opportunity.
Emphasise Big Picture Ideas: The ability to make a difference in the world is gratifying. Ensure your employees that the work they are doing is contributing to something greater. This in turn, motivates everyone to actively work towards fulfilling the organization’s mission.
Ask Your Employees: What motivates them? Everybody is a little different, so sometimes the best method is to just ask. You might discover something that you would have never thought otherwise.