As a business owner, one of your major priorities is maximizing employee performance. Unfortunately, this can prove to be incredibly challenging. Every individual is different and you can’t use a one-size-fits-all approach. But with a combination of timely strategies, you can move the needle in a positive direction.
Effective Ways to Motivate Employees
When it comes to employees, every individual on your payroll falls somewhere along a spectrum of engagement. On one end, you have people who are actively disengaged. These folks are unhappy and, whether purposefully or unintentionally, they undermine how others feel about the company. In the middle of the spectrum, there are people who are not engaged. They don’t always detract from the business, but they certainly aren’t adding to it. Then on the far side of the spectrum, there are the employees who are fully engaged. These are the people who work with a passion and feel positive about their place in the business.
Motivating employees is about moving people from the disengaged side of the spectrum to the fully engaged side. Here are some effective tactics for doing so:
Set Clear Goals
Employees can’t stay motivated if they don’t know what you expect of them. If you’re going to push your employees in the right direction, make sure you’re setting clear, individualized goals for each employee. No two individuals are the same, nor should they be treated as such.
People respond to rewards. They’re an effective way to motivate and incentivize performance from all team members. But you might be approaching rewards from the wrong angle.
“Traditionally, rewards are part of your sales compensation plan in the form of a monetary incentive. However, additional incentives are sometimes needed to keep your team motivated,” sales coach Justin Lane explains. “Non-financial rewards can be just as, or even more motivating for employees than those involving traditional financial rewards.”
Consider adding non-financial rewards like catered meals, paid time off, recognition, awards ceremonies, and scheduling flexibility to your arsenal of motivational tactics. You’ll save money and get more out of your employees.
Empower the HR Department
Your organization’s HR department should be so clued in to how your employees feel, work, and perform that they can provide you with meaningful information on how to better motivate, inspire, and manage for optimal results.
If your HR department doesn’t fit this description, it may be that they don’t have enough insights to know what’s going on. One way to overcome this problem is to implement an HR dashboard.
An HR dashboard is basically an advanced analytics tool that provides a visual display of important HR metrics through interactive data visualizations like graphs and charts. It can help you understand things like labor effectiveness, absenteeism rate, employees who are most likely to quit, and other powerful insights. And based on these findings, you can tweak your approach to management and better motivate employees.
Give Employees a Stake in the Outcome
If your employees feel like they’re nothing more than cogs in a wheel, you shouldn’t be surprised by their lack of motivation. They need to feel like they have a stake in the outcome.
You can give employees more of a stake in the business by introducing things like year-end bonuses and profit sharing. You can also change the way you hire and focus on promoting from within. This gives employees a reason to stay engaged at all times.
Make Employees Happy
At the end of the day, anything you can do to make employees happy with their jobs is going to motivate them to perform at a higher level.
“Happy employees are productive employees, simple as that,” entrepreneur William Craig writes for Forbes. “Controlled experiments reveal productivity gains of anywhere from 12% to 20% when measures are taken to ensure employees have a physically welcoming atmosphere in which to perform their duties, flexible scheduling, opportunities to unwind and reasonable employee benefits packages that meet their daily needs, like a generous sick leave policy, matching retirement account contributions and paid parental leave.”
Set Your Employees Up for Success
General motivational techniques can only take you so far. In order to maximize employee productivity and output, you have to implement strategies that are tailored to your specific employees. The more you know them on a personal level, the more powerful your motivational tactics will be. Try spending more time with your team members and everything else will fall into place.