If you manage any amount of staff, you have probably encountered a certain “need” for motivation at times. For most of us, a job is a place where we earn money; however, in order to truly hire and maintain the best in staff, you need to offer motivation that their job is more than just another money tree.
Although your initial thought for motivation may be to give staff a raise, that is not always the case. In fact, surveys completed with employees have showed that many seek motivation through the feeling of “purpose” and knowing they are contributing to their company, rather than only wishing for an increase in pay. Here are the top ways to keep a motivated work force:
- Take a genuine interest in your employees
This means more than the occasional pat on the back. Most employees will begin to feel like they are just another peon lost in a flood of people. Offer advice and coaching to them as individuals. Take an interest in their career goals and in helping them reach said goals.
- Acknowledge hard work and professional achievements
It is easy to assume that an employee’s work is just something “expected” of them. They’re being paid to do their job and they’re doing it. However, this is an easy way for an employee’s work to start slipping. They could spend extra hours ensuring they meet deadlines or providing the best outcome possible and then never hear a “thank you”. If you aren’t going to notice when they take that “extra mile” then don’t be surprised if they stop taking it!
This is a simple and yet often overlooked rule for motivation. Listen to your employees. To their concerns, to their ideas, or even to some harmless venting about a bad day they previously had. They should feel comfortable talking to you and that is only accomplished when you actively listen to what they have to say.
- Encompass the work-life balance
Vacation time is given to employees for a reason. It offers them a break from their work and a chance to refuel and spend time with their friends and family. While in-office, you can also offer events that bring some enjoyment to their day, such as potlucks or friendly competitions.
- Set smaller, more frequent goals
It is nice to work towards a huge end goal; however, to motivate your staff more consistently it is important to set smaller, more easily achievable goals. Give them weekly numbers to meet or even small projects to complete within the day. Reward these goals – either with verbal praise or, for larger achievements, perhaps some extra time off or an office party.