According to recent data from Gallup, only 20 percent of workers worldwide are engaged with their work. That means the vast majority of workers worldwide are disengaged and checked out of their work. If your company is one of those with a high level of disengagement, it can be hard to change that situation and motivate employees, because motivation requires their participation.
But just because something is difficult doesn’t mean it’s not worth doing. You can motivate your employees just by being a better manager. Give them the freedom they need to do their jobs without someone breathing down their necks.
Hand out recognition when it’s deserved. Make your workplace one where people want to be. Be supportive and respectful of your employees, and give them the clarity they need to see how their contributions are helping the business.
1. Let Your Employees Work Autonomously
One of the most effective things you can do to motivate your employees is simply to give them autonomy in how they do their jobs. Don’t micromanage. Don’t try to dictate how they do tasks, what order they do them in, or how much time they need for each one. Letting employees control their own workdays as much as possible can increase feelings of job satisfaction and well-being.
Plus, no one does their best work when the boss is constantly hovering around. Micromanaging your employees will make them resentful and anxious, and it will definitely make them disengage and may drive them to look for employment somewhere else, where they can have more freedom and feel trusted.
2. Give Them Suitable Recognition
If you’re not someone who tends to recognize employee achievements and contributions, you might be surprised to learn that recognition is a powerful motivator for most people. Everyone wants to feel like their efforts are noticed and appreciated. Recognition helps employees feel validated, valued, and seen, and that can pump up feelings of motivation and make employees more engaged.
You need to be giving employees recognition regularly and often, not just when it’s time for reviews. Don’t be afraid to say thanks, especially when an employee goes beyond their regular job duties to help the company meet its goals.
Of course, employees also deserve thanks and recognition for the ordinary things they do each day for the company, such as being reliable, offering great customer service, or having strong problem-solving skills.
Don’t let an employee anniversary or life event slip by without some recognition. People remember the times when they receive recognition, and a small shout-out can be massively motivating to an employee, and can even help turn around employees who are struggling to meet performance goals.
3. Be Supportive and Respectful
If your employees perceive you as rude or a bully, they’re not going to be particularly motivated to do their best work for you. Create an environment in which employees feel respected. Act with integrity and honesty, and treat employees as if you expect the same integrity and honesty from them.
Be supportive of their career goals, offering mentorship, training opportunities, tuition reimbursement, and opportunities for advancement. Employees will be more motivated if they’re treated well by a boss they perceive as good, and if they feel like the company supports their professional development.
4. Create a Pleasing Work Space
No one wants to work in old, dingy, run-down facilities. Make your workplace one that people look forward to going to each day – or at least, one that they don’t actively hate. Make sure your equipment is up to date and in good working order, so that employees can do their tasks easily without getting frustrated.
Modernize your facilities and keep everything clean, well-lighted, and freshly painted. A nice workplace with nice, respectful people can help motivate employees to do their best work, and will make it easier for your employees to spend one-third of their lives in your space.
5. Give Your Employees More Clarity
Employees who don’t clearly see how their contributions are helping the company are employees who may lose the motivation to continue making their best effort. Be transparent with your company’s goals and how those goals are being met. Make sure each employee knows how their work helps further company goals.
When employees can see how they’re helping the company succeed, they’re more likely to want to keep doing so. Getting your employees motivated to do their best work can be a challenge, but it’s one that you need to take on if you want your company to succeed.
Boosting engagement and motivation can do so much for your company, and everyone in your organization will benefit as a result.