As a business owner, you know that high turnover is expensive. That’s why it’s so important to regularly assess how well you motivate your employees. There will come a time when the employees in your office are not hitting goals, doing the very minimum of their work, or completely distracting themselves and others around them.
If this is going on longer than a month something has to be done because your business will start to suffer. Maybe it’s not the employee’s fault, maybe the structure of how the office is run doesn’t motivate them to work hard. If you are struggling to motivate your employees, this article will give you ideas that you may not have thought of before to boost employee engagement and productivity.
1. Give rewards and incentives.
One of the biggest motivators is giving out rewards for achieving a certain goal such as sale goals or having a quarterly goal that takes the whole office to work together achieve. These can be seasonally based incentives like renting out an amusement park for a team night out or taking your employees and their spouses out for a limo night to a 5-star restaurant.
Depending on how big and close your office is you can think outside the box with incentive ideas like paintball, concert tickets, or having massages for the office. To maximize motivation do individual goals and rewards along with company goals and rewards. Not everyone is going to be motivated to work hard for a ping pong table for the office, but most likely everyone will be motivated by getting performance bonuses, commissions, and raises. Other things could be used as rewards like non-monetary gifts, gift vouchers, vacations, etc.
2. Redesign jobs.
A lot of business owners overlook the design of their employee’s job description. If you have had an employee who has worked for you for a year, they may get burned out from doing the same thing all day everyday.
As you get to know your employees look and see what their strengths and weakness are, you can give them more responsibility to work towards promotions that will motivate and improve their productivity. There are many ways to redesign jobs such as:
- Job Expansion: Increasing the tasks in a position to create variety.
- Job Circling: Assigning staff to different position for temporary amount of time. This is to help employees understand different jobs around the office to increase their education for the business and help efficiency.
- Job Revamp: This involves increasing the task variety, responsibility, and more authority. It is vital to ensure that the skills the job requires are matched by the abilities of the employee’s strengths and weaknesses.
3. Offer progressive feedback.
Prompt progressive feedback informs the employees of the effects of their actions on the company. According to the theory of goal-setting, a company’s staff gets its motivation from goal-setting and reception of prompt and progressive feedback on where they stand concerning the goals. Research also shows that employees are motivated when they realize they are progressing.
It is essential to be specific in your feedback to staff. For instance, avoid saying ‘excellent job’ and state that the member of staff was organized in their presentation, their style of public speaking, and the citations they used. The employee is highly likely to apply these strong points in their next project when they are pointed out.
4. Believe in your staff members.
Employees who are continuously criticized in a meeting or during the break will naturally lose motivation in performing their tasks. It is always best to present constructive feedback and address their weaknesses in a private one to one closed door conversation.
Let your employee know they can do better and that they are capable and smart and so you expect more from them than they are currently offering. Transformational leadership is characterized by the perception of leaders’ trust. when attempting to motivate employees for a major project, always consider this approach.
5. Make goals achievable.
The annual bonus trip award for the highest performing sales team members is popular among many companies. The issue with such rewards is that they are awarded to a few employees. The remaining members of the team feel like they don’t need to put a lot of effort because the reward will be awarded to the same individuals.
In Vroom’s equation of expectancy, employees require seeing that the needed performance and related reward are possible to achieve. Come up with a series of rewards within the year to provide motivation for performance excellence.
For instance, as opposed to a yearly trip, award numerous three-day getaways after each quarter. Provide a variation for the reward basis from top sales to top customer service reviews to highest customer retention rate, and so on. Numerous types of excellence will offer motivation to your team members to concentrate on more areas of their performance.
6. Make expectations clear.
Employees who lack goals are usually without aim. Offer employees achievable and clear goals while ensuring standards are in place to measure their performance. Expectancy theory by Victor Vroom supports the notion that staff members must know the desired actions and that the desired performance will be yielded. When employees get clear expectations, they are motivated and resultantly, the employee net promoter score is high.
As a business owner, motivating employees should be your priority as the success of your business depends on it. Because let’s face it, if your employees aren’t getting the job done or done well you will lose customers, reputation, and money.
Motivating your employees is about bringing out the best in your people. This will improve your company culture, retention and talent development while filling your talent pipeline to meet new needs as your company grows.
QUESTION: What’s been working for you when it comes to motivating your employees as an SMB? Share your comments and questions below.