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How do I Increase Staff Motivation?

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  • Written By: N. Madison
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  • Last Modified Date: 19 September 2016
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Finding ways to increase staff motivation may not only help to create a more pleasant work environment, but also improve productivity. You may work to help increase staff motivation by putting effort into providing positive feedback, for example, or even giving rewards for a job well done. Making announcements about your company's progress and milestones it has reached may also help employees to feel more connected to the business and more a part of your company’s success. In fact, sharing company goals with your employees may also give them something concrete to work toward.

One of the most effective ways to increase staff motivation is to give regular feedback. Employees tend to feel less motivated when they feel their efforts go unnoticed. The same goes for situations in which staff members feel they consistently receive criticism but no praise when they have done a good job. Taking the time to let your staff members know you appreciate their hard work, notice improvement, or are impressed with their efforts may go a long way toward motivating those who work for you.

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Offering rewards may also prove helpful when you’re trying to increase staff motivation. Many people appreciate cash rewards, but awards do not always have to involve money. Sometimes gift certificates and small tokens of appreciation work just as well. You may also consider bringing food and beverages to the office, organizing staff celebrations, allowing additional time off work, or even allowing hard-working staff members to work from home from time to time in an effort to boost staff motivation.

In some cases, staff members may seem unmotivated because they simply do not understand how a company is progressing and are not kept abreast of its goals. Filling in staff members on the company objectives and goals may help them to understand what they are working toward and better focus their efforts. Having individuals in management keep other staff members abreast of the company’s overall health and progress may help individuals to stay motivated as well.

You may also find that giving your employees opportunity to share their suggestions and concerns may also prove motivating. Often, employees feel less motivated when they feel they do not have a voice in matters. While you may not choose to apply every suggestion they offer, giving your employees a chance to be heard may help them stay enthusiastic and ready for work.

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anon960000
Post 12

I think firms should use a special service to evaluate employee productivity. It helps to avoid conflicts between staff and company management. It also creates a great working environment which was mentioned earlier. In this case, everyone knows results depend on the efforts made on tasks.

Also, it helps to get a career promotion and encourage competition. In the same time, software like this preserves a friendly environment.

Clairdelune
Post 11

I think community college teachers are in a different situation as far as motivation and positive feedback go.

I was an ESL teacher in a community college.

We had some regulations we had to follow like testing, grading and general subject matter to cover.

But the curriculum was fairly loose, so we had control of how and what methods we chose to use. We had an in-class evaluation by the dean twice a year. He gave us feedback, both negative and positive and suggestions on how to improve. He was always fair.

It was the feedback from the students that really kept us motivated and enjoying our jobs. The students would write us notes or tell us

that they liked the class and the way we taught them.

They told us they were learning a lot and always said "thank you" for teaching us. Boy, do comments like that make you feel good and want to come the next day!

And then, at the end of the quarter, they brought yummy ethnic food from their country, and we had a great party.

sweetPeas
Post 10

@anamur - I also read a book about the Ford company in its early days. I wonder if it was the same book. I was impressed by the way Ford tried different ways of handling his employees. He learned by his mistakes and tried something different.

His first assembly line workers were paid low wages and the line making those Model-Ts was slow as molasses.

Then he tried giving them a big raise and provided them with help with their housing and other perks. Amazing - their productivity went way up. They felt worthwhile.

As time went on, the employees on the line and the managers received medical coverage, vacation time and other benefits.

Even though working on an assembly line is surely monotonous, perks and positive feedback helps the employees get through the day.

indemnifyme
Post 9

@Monika - That sounds awful. Surely paying people late like that can't be legal?

I also work for someone that is horrible at getting people motivated. He is such a micro-manager that everyone rebels and only does the bare minimum. I think there is a really find line between holding your staff accountable for what they should be doing and looking over their shoulders every minute of the day! I wish my boss would find that line.

Monika
Post 8

The office I work in now could have written the book about how not to motivate the staff! I swear, it is the most dreary work environment I've ever been in.

The company is new, and when we were hired we were told we would be getting monthly commission. Then once we started working it became a quarterly commission of a much lesser percentage that is much harder to get. The trouble is, our base salary is pretty low because we're supposed to be getting commission! I can barely even live on it.

And to top that off, we've even had our paychecks come late a few times because there wasn't enough money in the company account!

So I guess what I'm saying is, if you wanted motivated staff, pay them a decent wage. It's pretty hard to get motivated to work if you're sitting at your desk wondering if your next paycheck will actually be deposited on time.

manykitties2
Post 7

Our workplace is always making the employees get involved in staff motivation games. I honestly feel like we are back in grade school relearning how to work on a team. While I can understand that staff motivation is important, I think that too many human resources managers haven't been in touch with the people down below them in a long time.

I think that the best staff motivational techniques are ones that are non-invasive and easy. I like bonuses and raises instead of cute games and cheap prizes.

Does anyone think that staff motivation techniques really work, or is it all about the money?

lonelygod
Post 6

There are a lot of employee motivation techniques that jobs I have worked at have tried. It seems to me that employee engagement in the company is a number one trick of the trade to increase staff motivation.

At my last job they were always having fundraisers and social gatherings to encourage employees to socialize and participate and making the vibe of our workplace happier. It was a good effort to be sure, and the free food was nice, but I always felt that the things our company picked to support were just what the upper management was interested in. I guess you can't make everyone happy.

serenesurface
Post 5

I was reading about the Ford company and the employee benefits, bonuses and vacations the workers received from the company. After all, Ford could not have been successful if it didn't have those workers on the assembly line, repeating the same movements over and over all day to produce cars.

In return, they received membership in the Ford benefit program. They had access to medical services, special living areas and even playgrounds for children. Some supervisors and administrators received cars and vacations as well.

Many Japanese companies do the same kind of thing for their employees to increase motivation. Some even have yoga classes during the work day!

burcidi
Post 4

I completely agree that giving good feedback along with criticism is essential for motivation.

I've experienced this so much as part of a staff. Usually my bosses are so concentrated on being successful that they continuously criticize our work so that it will be better and as close to perfect as possible. But when the job is done and it has been a success, we get little or no good feedback or applause for our work.

Who would want to keep doing something when there is no appreciation? I actually mentioned this to one of my supervisors recently. I said that I work better and more efficiently when I know that I'm doing a good job.

I

don't mind being criticized if it's going to improve my work. But I also want my work and effort to be recognized. It sounds silly, but sometimes, all I need to hear is a "good job!" from my boss to make me feel happy and motivated to work.
subway11
Post 3

@Comfyshoes - My husband was telling me that the company that he works for offers team building seminar trips about twice a year. It is really a chance for the members of management to bond together and get motivated to do their job better.

There are also management coaching sessions and I think that getting out of the office and learning in a different setting allows for a form of motivation for the staff. In fact many come back to work with more zeal and really hit the ground running.

I also think that company picnics, holiday parties and birthday celebrations also offer a chance for the company to acknowledge all of its employees. These celebrations also show the

employees that the company cares about them and makes them want to work harder. Some companies build on this by offering stock options in order for an employee to own a piece of the company.

Many feel that when an employee has a stake in the company’s future, it will also motivate them to perform better because they now have more of a vested interest.

comfyshoes
Post 2

@Icecream17 - Wow what a great environment. I believe that staff motivating ideas should involve acknowledgement of what the employee is doing well. Everyone wants to feel like a winner and I think that if you build on the positives of what the employee is already doing right, they will be excited about their job and will want to succeed in their goals.

Everyone has areas to improve and you will not be motivating the staff if all you do is point out the negatives and not acknowledge the positives. As a matter of fact, this is how employees get burned out because if all they hear is negative comments many employees may not want to do the job anymore because no one wants to feel like a loser.

The idea of catching someone doing something right offers real motivation for the staff and positive feedback like this is even more rewarding than money.

icecream17
Post 1

I think that creating a work environment that eliminates employee turnover because the employees do not want to leave is important. Understanding what is most important to the employees and providing them with certain fringe benefits makes a difference.

There is a local hospital here in Miami that was rated one of the best companies to work for because it offered such a great working environment as well as fringe benefits.

For example, the hospital allows for flexible schedules that allow employees that care for school aged children to split their shifts so that they could still care for their children. They also have an onsite gym and daycare and allow working parents the chance to take the

summers off to be with their children without the risk of losing their job.

This hospital offers average compensation to its employees, but the environment caters so much to the employee’s needs that most would not think of ever leaving. Their employee turnover is very low because most of the employees feel personally connected to the hospital because they seem to care so very much about each individual employee.

The hospital also outperforms most patient surveys because this hospital really knows how to motivate its staff.

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