The excitement, energy, and renewed focus that often fuels your staff at the start of each new year is starting to melt away as quickly as the snow-covered ground in March. In an ideal world, every human would be intrinsically motivated, but alas, that is not reality.
So what can you do as an employer to help keep the momentum up for those that need a little added push? Here are a few ways to keep your employees motivated throughout the year without breaking the bank.
Keep Their Work Fresh:
All jobs have some level of redundancy to them, and that is just par for the course in the world of work. That being said, having your workday on auto-pilot every day can have an impact on motivation levels. Offer cross-training opportunities to your team members, invite them to take on a new project, or empower them to pilot a new technique. Not only will employees be engaging other areas of their brain, they will be more likely to look at their routine work with a fresh set of lenses.
Encourage Company-Wide Collaboration:
Everyone has something to learn, and everyone has something to teach. Not only that, but each department in the organization is reliant on the others. So it is naturally best to get everyone working together. By encouraging company-wide collaboration, you will be offering new learning opportunities to team members and helping all of your staff see what important roles each person plays in the company. You may even identify innovative ideas to impact your entire organization.
Set Clear & Measurable Goals:
Yes, there is work that must get done – that is why you have employees to begin with. Setting clear, measurable, and realistic goals and expectations is a solid way to keep the momentum and productivity high. It is hard to create a motivated workforce if they are not provided the tools and direction they need to be successful. If leaders do not set clear and realistic expectations, targets, and goals, then they shouldn’t be surprised if those metrics aren’t met.
Gamify Their Work:
We use gamification techniques often with our team here at Manpower. From vintage video game and guilty pleasure themed contests – they all seem to help us motivate our team. As mentioned before, all work becomes redundant, and we all put off our least favorite tasks for last – it is normal. Since we are armed with this information, what can we do to help encourage and motivate our team? Turning everyday activities into a well-timed challenge helps to break up the routine and add some excitement to their work.
Recognize and Reward Them:
Not all recognition and rewards need to come with an actual price tag (although the occasional financial boost certainly doesn’t hurt – which is why sales positions are designed around commission and incentives). Sometimes however, the best thing you can do as a leader is take the time to thank your team members for their performance. Recognize when they overcame a big obstacle or when they took initiative to help a team member. Supportive leadership and sincere praise helps to inspire loyalty and organizational buy-in.
Lead By Example:
It’s hard to expect your team to stay motivated if your leaders are shuffling in and shuffling out, so be sure to set a positive example. If your team is just going through the motions, the first thing as a leader you should do is look inward. What behaviors are you modeling? Out of the tips provided previously, which ones can help you fuel your own performance? If you are trapped in your own motivational rut, be sure to seek out some support and guidance from a trusted peer to help get you back on the right track.
There will be countless times throughout the years that each and every person experiences dips in motivation. The problem will never be with the rut itself, but with the person’s commitment to do what is necessary to dig out of it. As a leader, it is your job to figure out what you can do to support their efforts to get back to peak performance levels.
Needless to say, there are times when you have done everything you can to get your team on-board and the time has come to help them transition out of the organization and find a replacement. If that is the case, requesting a new employee through Manpower is one simple click away: