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Idea Box: How to Increase Employee Motivation
Pay raises are not the only way to increase worker motivation. Consider these ways to promote higher motivation among your employees.
Date Posted: 11/1/2012
Have you ever wondered if there are other ways to motivate your workers beyond financial ones? Employee motivation is important because a more motivated employee has higher performance, which benefits the company as a whole. For this reason alone, it is something that all companies should give attention to on a regular basis. Consider the following ideas that can help increase your workers’ performance levels.
• Help them grow. The fancy term for this is career development. But the important part is to provide opportunities for your workers to increase their skills and expand their experiences. Some companies make it a point of cross training workers on a variety of positions. This gives the company greater flexibility when a worker is out for any reason. An easy way to start this it to have employees shadow more experienced workers. Make it a habit to ask your workers, or have their direct supervisors ask, if there is a new skill or position that they would like to learn and give them the chance to experience it.
• Give them goals. When they have something to work toward, it gives people a feeling of purpose. This can take on a variety of forms. For workers on the production line, you could institute a friendly competition between teams or shifts to see who can produce the most. Consider adding an extra incentive in the form of anything from donuts and coffee to getting off work an hour early, with pay, for the winning team.
• Be visible. Knowing that the boss is nearby and could be watching them is a great incentive for workers to keep moving. If you do not usually spend a lot of time on the production floor, make it a habit of walking through at random times throughout the day. You can even make a point of talking to a couple workers that you might not otherwise interact with. This makes them feel like they are more than just a nameless face on the production line.
• Recognize achievements and jobs done well. While you can make this idea more formal with an “employee of the month” or other similar recognition program, simply making a point of telling workers that they are doing a good job goes a long way. Encourage all levels of management down to crew leaders to make this a regular habit.
• Build trust through communication. This is especially important during uncertain economic times. Be upfront with workers if there are potential issues that could affect their jobs. Knowing that things are uncertain and having no idea how that could affect them is a real deterrent to morale.
• Get to know your workers. Every person is different, and knowing what motivates them, what their personal ambitions and dreams are, can help you know what drives them. You can do this by finding opportunities to interact with employees as well as recruiting help from all levels of management to listen to those under their supervision.