One of the most important things any employer can do is to keep their staff motivated. Even if a manager is capable of making all the right hiring choices, they can still fall short where it counts, and keeping staff motivated is key to running a successful business.
There are quite a few ways that you can as an employer keep your staff motivated to ensure that a level of productivity is maintained in the workplace, and that you get fantastic results from your team!
Every single one of your employees is their own person. They have their own personal lives, families, plans, dreams and ambitions. There are numerous things that they personally like and dislike.
If you as a manager are capable of maintaining a positive workplace and keeping everyone’s morale high, you will experience a superior level of staff performance, notice increased productivity and you will also notice less examples of staff taking sick days or making mistakes.
Here are our 7 ways in which you as a manager can build a positive environment in which your employees can thrive.
1: Make sure that you know your employees. When it comes to your staff, it’s always important to remember that a person is much more than just a name and number. Most of the people you will regularly find yourself employing will like to be seen as and talked to as though they are people, rather than expendable staff members. You can ask how people are feeling, support them and work to build your relationships with each member of your staff.
By getting to know the people you work with by name, greeting them and talking to them in an informal way, you will find that you break down barriers between both of you. It will allow them to get to know you as a person, rather than just a standard manager. If you communicate well with your employees, and you strive to make them feel cared about, safe and secure in their environment, you will find that they are usually much more motivated in their day to day work at your company.
2: Have trust in your staff and allow them freedom in their roles. If you have hired a competent employee who is very capable of performing the tasks they need to perform, you will find that they will be able to perform tasks without consistent supervision on your part.
One of the worst things you can do is constantly micromanage an employee who is capable of working fine unsupervised. If you consistently micromanage an employee, you can create doubt in their mind, and it can come across as a lack of trust on your part. This will make people feel undervalued and they may even feel pressured or harassed. Keeping up a level or pressure like this will cause problems over time, and it is best avoided where possible.
If you are dealing with an employee who is not performing well, it can be a good idea to take them to one side and have an informal conversation about their work with them. They might have factors going on in their life that negatively impact on their performance. It is always best to try and resolve problems privately outside of the earshot of other employees. In most cases this will not be necessary. Let your staff do what they do best!
3: Make time for your staff and respect their opinions. It can be incredibly useful to respect both the thoughts and opinions of your staff. If you take the time to ask your staff for their input during meetings and really listen to them, responding to their thoughts and concerns, you will create a positive environment for them which helps them feel nurtured, supported and valued.
No matter who they are within your business, every employee has something to say. Their thoughts, concerns and opinions can be valuable as they can help you decide which projects you want your staff to work on and sometimes the direction you may wish to take the company in.
4: Make sure you give your staff feedback! It’s always a good idea to give your employees feedback on their work. We always recommend looking for ways to give positive reinforcement to staff, rather than a critical analysis of what a staff member has done wrong. Too much critical analysis can be damaging and alienating to your staff.
Your main aim whilst giving feedback should be to create an environment for your staff in which they feel valued. Good positive feedback can really help improve staff performance if it’s given regularly. It will show your employees that the work they do has value, and that you also value them as individuals, and respect their decisions and handling of the tasks they are set.
5: Keep your employees challenged! If you are looking for a black hole for staff motivation, nothing beats a stagnant work environment. Doing the same thing day in, day out can lead to many employees becoming tired, bored, lazy or end up with them leaving your company just to experience something new.
You can present your staff with new tasks that offer a change of pace to them. Challenge your staff to learn new skills or get new qualifications and perform different tasks that are within their comfort zones. This is a good way to increase their productivity whilst helping them feel relied upon and believed in. It also keeps the environment fresh. Motivating staff by telling them you believe in them and that you know they can do things will help to keep people inspired!
6: Give your staff tasks that best fit their experience. All employees will have areas which they excel at. To maximise productivity in the workplace, it is generally a good idea to put your staff in roles where they thrive. If you properly delegate the right employees to their areas of excellence, you will notice a higher level of productivity in your workplace.
If you put someone into a role outside their comfort zone you may end up with them performing suboptimally. Staff members can also start to resent it if they are repeatedly plunged into specific roles they don’t enjoy. It’s important to set tasks to people who can quickly and efficiently accomplish them without trouble. It saves time and stress in the workplace.
That said, it’s never a good thing to overburden an exceptional staff member who performs well in every role. Tasks should be distributed evenly and fairly when delegating the optimal staff for the job.
7: Have faith in your staff and believe in their capabilities. One of the most powerful motivational skills is to be the manager who genuinely believes in their employees. Nothing is quite as powerful when it comes to raising the self esteem of the people who work for you than having a boss that believes in you.
A great leader knows that the people who work for them are capable, competent and valuable, and should let them know how valuable they are. Having a positive system of believing in your staff will usually get you exceptional results, as they will be inspired to work harder and more effectively for you. You will find that you get superior results to a manager that does not value their employees the same way.
The most important thing is to always be genuine with your staff. Regardless of how you treat your staff, using these techniques will fall short if you don’t have faith in them. It is important that your employees feel that they can trust you if you wish to retain a positive, nurturing environment, this will benefit your business and increase staff productivity.