Employee motivation and engagement are critical aspects to a healthy business. Whether it is a single department that is lacking motivation or the entire organization, goals will not be achieved and your business will fall flat in the face of competition when your employees do not feel like they are individually critical to the success of the organization. Most managers and entrepreneurs are aware of this but they struggle with finding the proper way to drive towards engagement and motivation. There is no single, easy answer but here are some ideas that have worked for me.
Before you can motivate your team, you need to determine exactly what motivates them. There are a few ways to do this:
- Employment Assessment: Our organization puts all potential employees through a software-driven employment assessment to initially determine if the employee is a good fit for the company culture and job demands. If the candidate is hired, the assessment can then also be used to determine what sort of working environment and management style works best for that individual.
- Brainstorming Sessions: Schedule brainstorming sessions with your team and have them list the intrinsic and extrinsic levers that motivate them. You might find that some motivators will work for your whole team or that each team member needs individualized motivators!
- Survey/Questionnaire: These work better than brainstorming sessions if you feel that your team prefers to remain anonymous.
After you find out what motivates your team, open new lines of communication. Share some semi-confidential financial goals that your employees may not typically be privy to and that they can help achieve. If you are not comfortable doing that then try providing them with updates on sales wins or directly inform them of how they can each individually impact the business. The best way to provide this information is with informal meetings or impromptu huddles. This will help empower your team and build team spirit.
RECOGNIZE & REWARD
Now that you know what motivates your team and they know what they can do to drive business improvement, you should recognize their progress and reward their achievements. Recognition can be done in the form of a highly visible point tracking system or a simple mention in the company newsletter. Rewards should be individually catered to everyone. If financial incentives work best, then you can offer incentive bonuses. Other employees may prefer to be rewarded with gifts or even being placed on a project they desire to work on. Regardless of the reward system you choose, always have fun and celebrate the wins with everyone!
If you have questions or would like to learn more about how to motivate your team, contact me today to continue the dialog.