If your office looks more like a Tuesday night at a bingo hall rather than the energetic, productive environment you know it can be, then it’s high time to try some employee motivation tactics. While everyone is different, and what motivates one person might not work on another, there are general practices you can use to keep everyone on track.
Remind employees of their value.
Every business is a give-and-take. You can’t run your business optimally without the help and dedication of your employees, and without your management and guidance, your employees wouldn’t be successful. It’s critical to remind your employees of how much you value them, whether through physical rewards, shout-outs, or something else altogether. If they know their worth and the important role they play, they’ll feel much more in tune with your mission and their place in it.
There’s really nothing more motivating than the prospect of a prize—think of how candy motivates kids (although you might want to try using a different reward for your employees). If you have a company-wide goal you’d like to hit by the end of the month or the end of the quarter, offer a reasonable incentive for reaching that goal. You’d be shocked by just how much more quickly you’ll hit your goals.
If you are constantly throwing the same goals at your employees without showing them the end result or the reason behind their work, they will gradually perform at a less productive rate—feeling bogged down in a rut of monotonous tasks. Every time you assign a project to an employee, they should know exactly how that project contributes to the greater good, and why their role is so important in accomplishing this particular goal.
Find the silver lining.
A particularly hectic season, high turnover, or missing a goal are all things that can negatively impact the morale of your employees. These are all hard obstacles to overcome, and will likely give your company an overall feeling of negativity. Instead of dwelling on these negatives, encourage your employees to reflect, take a step back, and regroup. Everyone needs a break once in a while, and if you continue to push too hard after a difficult period, you aren’t giving employees the pause they deserve and need to stay on track.
There’s nothing less motivating than coming into work each day, sitting at your desk, and never communicating with any other employees. Some people just need a little push to be more social with coworkers, and others will do this naturally. It’s your job to make sure employees feel comfortable communicating in the office, and that can happen organically through collaborative events, meetings, and other opportunities for people to connect. Just make sure these events are a good mixture of professionalism and natural socialization. Employees should feel relaxed, which is more conducive to creativity.
Every company struggles with ways to motivate employees more effectively from time to time. To a degree, you have to trust that you found the right group of people to carry out your mission. But, with a little help from these ideas, you can help ensure motivation levels remain high throughout the year.