How to inspire your employees to give their best
As much as people (employers and bosses) don’t want to admit it, there are lots of unmotivated employees in this world. The drive to do their best isn’t there, no motivation for promotion. A dry spell if I may say. This can be a very tricky situation for an employer.
According to a study by Dale Carnegie, less than 25% of non-management employees are fully motivated and engaged.
This is clearly an issue that must be worked on. If employees feel there is no reason to work hard, why would they? And this could impede the company’s growth.
So, what is the answer?
Well, we feel, creating simple, yet effective motivating factors within your company culture is the answer. Inspiring your employees can go a long way for your company. Think about it, you wouldn’t be where you are without some motivation by your side. The only difference now is, you are going out of your way to leave a positive mark on your employees by inspiring them.
So, without further ado, here are 7 simple ways to inspire your employees to do their best.
1. Set goals
Believe it or not, your employees want a challenge, it’s human nature. If they show up to work every day with the same menial tasks to work on with no goal in sight, it’s easy to become unmotivated. But by setting achievable goals for your employees, you allow them to work towards something concrete which will also give you as a manager something to measure their performance against.
If some employees aren’t meeting goals, you will know it’s time to either let them go or work on their performance. Most importantly, when goals are achieved, make sure they are celebrated, maybe a 5% increase in salary for that month can suffice, tickets to an event, anything meaningful that your employees can look forward to winning.
One of the biggest motivating factors for employees is the feeling that their wants, opinions, and needs are heard at work. This doesn’t mean that every request is granted but listening to what employees are saying is key to motivation. Whether an employee has an idea for a new project or new ideas for their position, however improbable the ideas may be, just listen.
People like their voices to be heard and if they are continuously shut down by managers unwilling to listen, they may reach a point where they don’t just care anymore about the organization and aren’t willing to work hard.
3. Pay them well
We know you also need money. You are human too and unfortunately; money doesn’t grow on trees. If you are to take anything from this post, it should be this. Money alone is a motivation to do a lot of things. I mean if I come to you now and told you I need a custom-made service from you and I’m willing to match your price, tell me you won’t rally up everyone in your company to start working on my project? Because you know how much you stand to gain, that alone motivated you to do it.
So, apply that philosophy to your employees. To keep your top employees, you are going to have to pay them a competitive salary. This might be easier said than done in some organizations, but make sure you are not skimping on salary. If their performance deserves a raise, give them one, this will let them know they are valued and appreciated. If you cannot afford competitive salaries or raises, think about performance-based bonuses for individual employees or teams.
4. Care about their future
A manager that expresses interest and involvement in the future of their employees does marvels for motivation. Creating chances for people to move up within your organization as well as encouraging continuous growth and education is important. Employees feel valued when they see their manager really cares about where they are headed within the company and in their career.
Acting as a mentor and advocate will help build trust and motivation about their future with your company.
5. Create a good culture
Make sure your company is a decent place to work at. Not just offering a competitive salary and benefits but ensure people genuinely enjoy working in your organization. If your culture is negative and stiff, why would employees want to work hard? Especially if they aren’t enjoying what they are doing. You don’t have to offer free beer every day of the week or Google Glass for everyone, just incorporating simple perks like lunches, team building activities, and happy hours can be motivation enough.
6. Preach your Company’s value
Preach your company’s value and mission as much as you can to your employees. Have them framed and hanged all over, and if you can, add a cool graffiti of your company’s value and mission painted on the wall. Doing all this allows your employees to constantly see this and makes them align themselves towards the company’s values.
7. Recognize their achievements
Sometimes all people want is some acknowledgment for a job well done. If an employee has been putting in a lot of time working on a project, or they went out of their way to help out a coworker, do not hesitate to praise them.
It’s not just about the act of recognition, but the principle: If people feel that their efforts are appreciated, they will feel obliged to continue working hard. It could be as simple as giving them a gift for being outstanding, excellent, or just for being always early to work.
Employees whose achievements are recognized have higher levels of enjoyment out of the work they do. But if they feel like their long hours and personal sacrifices were all for nothing, it’s unlikely that they will go out of their way for the company again.
So, whether it’s noting their contributions in a meeting, recognizing them in a staff email, or just thanking them privately, it’s important that you show hardworking employees your gratitude.
Keeping your employees inspired to work hard and give their best efforts is key to a successful and healthy business. Some employees might need a little nudge to work harder and some do it on their own, but in the end, managers play a pivotal role in inspiration.