Handy Hints for Staff Motivation
Staff morale may be harder to measure than sales figures or margins, but it is of equal importance. Unhappy staff are unproductive staff and this will impact negatively on your profits and overall success as a company. The mental wellbeing and happiness of staff is crucial to business success.
In this blog we'll look at handy tips for motivating staff, that are easy to implement and won't break the bank. And if you're self employed, you can adjust these tips to meet your own morale needs!
Individual: Treat every member of your team as an individual and consider their individual needs. Instead of a blanket rewards system, consider little gestures that will be of most benefit or most appreciated by individuals.
Praise: Praise good work and offer regular feedback. Look for positives to focus on. Arrange regular appraisals (every 6 months) to discuss with employees; work, concerns and issues and re-establish the expectations of the company and the employee. If you are self employed you could sit down every six months to look over your successes, what has worked and what hasn't and outline your goals for the next six months.
Lead by example. Embody the ethos/ image of your company that you want everyone to convey. Let employees see you working hard and be enthusiastic about work and projects – enthusiasm is infectious! This is equally important for the self employed, embody the image you wish to project and customers will pick up on your enthusiasm too!
Encourage people to take a break. If staff are not using their holiday allowance they may not be operating to their full potential. Approach people who haven't used their holiday entitlement and encourage them to take a break. If you are self employed it can be tempting to work flat out and not take breaks, but you need to rest to stay on top of your game, and a well earned break is a great reward for your hard work.
Offer benefits that boost morale but don't break the bank. Organise a weekly delivery of fruit or treats, remember birthdays and make time for staff activities/ team building days.
Give ownership to your team. New employees will need guidance but once they are on the right track, loosen the grip on them. Allow them to work with minimal input. Giving your team ownership means they will feel trusted and motivated. As well as being good for employees self confidence, it will shine a light on new ways of doing things, inefficiencies in the system and opportunities.
Run a no blame culture. Don't blame individuals when things go wrong. Look at the working systems you have in place and analyse the exact reason why something went wrong. If you work for yourself use these opportunities to take a look at your working methods and consider what could be better.
Keep open lines of communication with employees. Listen to their ideas. They will feel more connected to the company and therefore more likely to want to contribute to its future and success. Keep employees informed about changes, happenings, successes etc. Hold weekly meetings to allow everyone to get together and discuss/ share what's going on, their concerns and achievements.
Be flexible. Remember that employees have lives outside work; children to pick up, relatives to care for, appointments etc. Strive to work around their commitments as far as is reasonably practicable.
Consider the little details. Create a great working environment. Smooth, efficient computer and operating systems, well maintained toilets and kitchen facilities and an organised, light working space where possible. The little issues that staff grumble about are usually easy to fix. Listen to what employees say and act on it. The self employed can follow this rule too; give yourself a calm, light, airy place to work where you will be able to focus without distraction. If you spend lots of time driving ensure your vehicle is in good condition, tidy/ nice to be in and gives a good impression when you arrive to see clients.
Right tools and skills for the job. Ensure that your staff are fully equipped with all the skills, knowledge and equipment needed to make sure their work runs smoothly and without drama.
'What does success look like?' Give employees absolute clarity in what success looks like. Help them understand their goals so that they can determine whether or not they are achieving them.