Quite often, the major motivating factor for better performance is higher pay; but almost everyone responds positively to praise and recognition. Since not all businesses can afford to hand out regular bonuses, here are 5 other ways to help employees stay motivated and productive at work:
1.Provide supportive leadership
Leadership is one of the key factors in employee motivation. Supportive leaders work closely with employees – trust and a sympathetic ear are powerful incentives for keeping employees focused and for developing new talent. Good leaders act as role models, holding themselves to high standards of accountability that set an example for all.
Every employee needs to know that he or she is valued as an individual. No one wants to feel like a faceless, interchangeable pawn in some larger game, so make sure all the members of your workforce are given opportunities to express themselves.
3.Create a positive environment
Since many working professionals spend the majority of their waking hours at the office, the work environment should be a place that puts employees at ease while encouraging productivity. An important step toward creating a happy and productive workspace is to encourage employees to share the information and knowledge, which for a supportive leader usually means more listening than talking. People should be allowed to admit their mistakes without fearing humiliation. Employees can also benefit from being given new and more challenging assignments that take them out of their comfort zones.
Nothing is better at keeping an individual focused and responsive than belonging a team. Through teamwork, employees learn to trust each other and to look beyond themselves. And healthy competition in a team setting, both in the office and after hours, can increase creativity as well as productivity.
5.Recognition and rewards
It doesn’t take much–an employee of the month plaque, a coupon for a Starbucks latte–to create real motivation, especially when recognition takes place in front of the group. Recognition and reward on a regular basis remind employees that they are appreciated, and help them to balance short- and long-term goals.