When you run a business, keeping your employees motivated is one of your most important jobs. It’s a mistake to think that everybody loves their job and they are as invested in the business as you are. Some people are very invested in the business and they are easy to motivate, but you have to remember that people are there to earn a living. That doesn’t mean that they don’t like their job and find it satisfying as well, but it does mean that certain employees are not going to be very motivated. When people are not motivated, they will do the bare minimum and collect their paycheck at the end of every month, but they will not go above and beyond to push the business forward. If you want your business to be a success, you need people that are willing to work hard, and it’s up to you to bring that out in them.
If you think that you have a motivation problem in your business, it’s easy to blame the employees. But don’t assume that people are lazy because they are unmotivated because it’s not the same thing. They’re not working hard because you are not doing enough to inspire them and motivate them while they are at work. They have the capacity and the desire to work hard, but only when they feel that it is worthwhile. If they don’t feel that it is worthwhile, that is partly down to you as their boss. If you want things to change, these are some of the best ways to motivate your employees.
Pay Them More
This is an obvious one, but it’s a piece of advice that business owners do not like to hear. If you are paying somebody a low wage, that tells them that you don’t really care that much about them and you want to get as much work out of them as possible, for the smallest amount that you can pay. This is especially true if you are paying people the minimum wage. But if you want to motivate people, you need to pay above the industry standard.
When people are rewarded for their work and they feel that their pay reflects the value that they bring to the company, they will work a lot harder. Offering a good salary will also make it a lot easier to hire the best talent, and those people will be more motivated and hard working in general, so it pays to pay well. In some cases, you will not be able to afford to raise wages by a lot, but even a small increase can make a big difference, so you should definitely consider it.
Praise Hard Work
Paying people well is one way to reward hard work, but sometimes, people want something simpler. They just want to be told that they’re doing a good job and you appreciate their work, but that kind of praise is severely lacking in a lot of businesses. It is expected that people do their jobs because they’re being paid, and they feel that they’re taken for granted. When people do not feel as though they are being recognized, they will not make an effort to work harder. They’re getting paid the same whether they go the extra mile or not, so why bother? But if you are vocal with your praise and you let people know that you value them and they are an important part of the business, that will encourage them to work hard.
Employee Of The Month Schemes
General praise is good, but you should also make it more official in the form of an employee of the month scheme. A lot of people think that employee of the month is outdated but it’s actually very effective if you handle it in the right way. When people know that there is a chance to win and get some perks, they’ll be far more motivated. It also introduces a bit of healthy competition into the office, which is a great way to push people to work harder. However, you need to make sure that you set it up in the right way. First off, you need to set clear guidelines about how you will choose the employee of the month and communicate these to your employees.
If it isn’t clear, people might feel put out when they didn’t win and they may also assume that you’re just playing favorites, rather than basing it on people’s work. You also need to make sure that you spread it out evenly so if somebody has already won it, pick somebody else. If the same one or two people win every month, it will soon lead to resentment in the office, which is never good. Finally, you need to make sure that you give people a good incentive to want to win it. Giving people use of a special parking space for the month is a common prize, but you could also offer an extra day off or maybe even a cash bonus.
Sometimes, people get stuck in a bit of a rut and they need some inspiring words to get them out of it. The praise that you give your employees is part of that, but you should also consider getting a motivational speaker to give a presentation to your employees. Hearing a successful person talk about the qualities that helped them get to where they were will encourage those qualities in your employees as well. These people will not be people that just coasted along doing the bare minimum and they serve as a good example for your employees to strive towards. You can combine visits from a motivational speaker with training sessions so you can help people to get in the right mindset and engage them properly.
Offer Opportunities For Progression
This is a very important one because people need to feel as though they have a goal to work towards. If people have been stuck in the same role for years and there are no opportunities for them to move forward and progress their career, they will soon become frustrated. Some people will leave and go to companies that will offer them opportunities for advancement but a lot of people will just become complacent and stay where they are, doing the bare minimum.
But if people see that you recognize and reward hard work by promoting people, and they have the chance to move forward in their career if they put the effort in, they will be a lot more motivated. Whenever you have a position open, you should always look to promote from within before you make an external appointment. You should only look outside the business if there are no suitable candidates working for you already. When people do miss out on promotions, you should communicate with them and explain your reasons. This will encourage them to improve their performance and work on their weaknesses so they can try again next time around.
Create A Positive Company Culture
Your company culture is very important and it has a big impact on motivation in the office. If you create a positive environment that puts a lot of focus into teamwork and employee welfare, people will feel at ease and they are likely to be motivated. But if there is a very negative culture around the office and people feel that they are constantly on edge and any mistakes will be punished harshly, that will seriously hurt motivation.
Open communication is a very big part of the company culture, so make sure that you are communicating well with employees and encouraging them to build good relationships with one another as well. It’s also important that you have a good HR team that can deal with any employee disputes in a timely manner. If disputes are not dealt with properly and you let employee relationships suffer, you will create a very toxic atmosphere.
Boredom is a motivation killer so it’s important that you find ways to combat it in your business. That’s often easier said than done, especially when people are doing the same thing day in, day out. People will quickly become bored when they are performing repetitive tasks, but there are some simple changes that you can make to improve things. Firstly, you should give employees a bit more freedom to do things in their own way. If you set strict guidelines about how people should work, their days will all have the same schedule and boredom will set in very quickly.
But if you give people more freedom, they can come up with different ways to do things and it will keep things fresh. Your employees know how they work best, so let them do things in their own way and they will be more productive. Giving people more breaks is another simple way to relieve boredom. If you allow people to take a 5 minute break every now and again, it’s easier for them to break their boredom cycle. As long as people are getting all of their work done and no deadlines are missed, you don’t need to worry.
Motivating your employees can be tough, but if your business is ever going to succeed, you need to find ways to keep people working hard.