15 Tips for Motivating Employees

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Whenever you walk through the accounting department you notice some members of your staff waiting in line at the coffee maker looking like they hope one more cup of coffee will keep them awake for the day.


Earlier and earlier secretaries are making more frequent trips to the snack machine. You’re used to seeing this need for a sugar rush in the afternoon, but now it’s happening before lunch.


Even the office manager, who should be periodically walking around making sure everyone else is alert, looks droopy eyed and says, “Another day, another dollar.”


That enthusiasm they used to have is gone or at least hiding. When you’ve asked people why they appear so unmotivated, they haven’t really given you a response. But you know you have to find some ways to bring back their energy level because their sluggishness is hurting productivity. Caffeine, sugar and a paycheck aren’t giving them the boost they need.


Here are 15 suggestions to motivate your staff and get that spark back into the workplace


  1. Have feedback sessions where workers are encouraged to let you know what they think would make them more interested in their jobs.
  1. Listen to every suggestion and decide later which idea to use from the brainstorming sessions.
  1. Arrange community focus groups to discuss improving company-wide issues.
  1. Provide lunch for meetings where motivation improvement is discussed.
  1. Occasionally change the setting from the same conference room where you usually hold meetings. Try holding meetings outside or at a restaurant.
  1. If you usually only see your staff in your office or in a meeting room, start making regular visits to employees at their work area. Come to where they feel most comfortable.
  1. Warmly greet staff members by name so they don’t feel like just a number or that you don’t know or don’t care who they are.
  1. In one-on-one meetings, give your full attention. Don’t take calls or continue working when an employee is expressing their concerns. Maintain eye contact to show your interest.
  1. Try to keep your interactions positive. Avoid being confrontational or dismissive.
  1. Acknowledge workers’ accomplishments. Don’t take hard work for granted. When an employee does a good job let him/her and everyone else know it.
  1. Offer new responsibilities to give new challenges.
  1. Provide one-on-one coaching. If you see someone struggling to learn a new task, especially if she asked for help, arrange for her to meet with you or a qualified co-worker to help her succeed.
  1. Provide an in-house workshop on stress management techniques.
  1. Plan social events away from work with friendly competitions, such as a softball game, to encourage team comradery.
  1. Don’t make an employee feel like you’re putting him out by walking him to the door or standing by the door waiting for him to get the hint to leave, especially while he's still talking!


What are some things that you use to motivate your employees?



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