But what happens if your employees aren’t as motivated as you are? Recent reports show that a disturbingly high number of employees don’t put all their effort into everyday work.
Well, this shouldn’t discourage you. Even the most dedicated employees can experience burnout due to poor feedback, insufficient resources or overworking. As a manager, your job is to tackle these issues and turn your team into a productivity powerhouse.
Here is how:
Focus on Work-Life Balance
Your employees spend at least eight hours a day at work, which may heavily affect their family and social lives. Such a hectic lifestyle might take its toll on their satisfaction and, of course, on overall workplace productivity. This statement is supported by some recent studies claiming that content employees work over 20% harder than those dissatisfied with working conditions. Therefore, to boost their engagement, you need to help them juggle their professional and private obligations. Here are several smart ideas you should consider when promoting work-life balance:
Encourage your employees to take vacation time.
Provide them with flexible working time.
Give them a chance to work from home when the need arises.
Organize an “open house,” giving your workers the opportunity to invite their friends or family to their workplace and show them what they do.
Offer them free gym memberships to promote a healthy and well-balanced lifestyle.
Never reward your employees for staying late at work. First, this is not the most reliable method of assessing one’s performance. Second, such an approach might confuse and discourage those who work hard during their working hours to get home as early as possible.
Offer Career Development Opportunities
Sooner or later, every job becomes stagnant. Once this happens, even your most loyal employees will start looking for more exciting career opportunities. To keep your team members loyal to your company, you need to motivate them and help them get off that hamster wheel on time. One of the most effective ways to do so is to provide them with great career advancement opportunities.
Now, you probably think that these job opportunities are based on giving your employees a raise or a fancy job title, but it doesn’t have to be so. There are numerous more creative ways to accomplish this, such as in-house, industry-specific courses, seminars, and mentoring programs. These practices will not only benefit the employees, but also business owners. By perfecting their skills and knowledge, your employees will be able to perform their tasks faster and more effectively.
Value their Efforts
As a manager, you need to prove that you value the individuals behind projects as much as the projects themselves. One of the most effective ways to show them how much you value their hard work is to reward them. According to a study, 69% of employees claim that they would work harder if they were more appreciated. However, when creating an incentive program, you need to be cautious. You don’t want your team to feel inspired to work only when they’re expecting to be rewarded.
Even though most of your workers would expect monetary incentives, such as a raise or a bonus, there are numerous more creative solutions you should consider. For instance, apart from cash, personalized gift cards can be outstanding motivation boosters. Also, do your research and learn more about your employees’ habits, interests, and hobbies. Surprise them and take them out to lunch, buy them a book they love or give them coupons for a new restaurant they’ve been planning to visit for months. This way, you will not only express gratitude for their efforts, but also prove them that you value their individuality.
Be Transparent and Ask them for Advice
To establish yourself as an authoritative leader, you need to be open with your employees. Discuss your company’s strength and weakness points and, most importantly, ask them for advice. For instance, if your company has faced massive financial issues or lost an important client, why don’t you ask your employees to help you find the best solution to this problem?
This will not only help you make more rational decisions, but also boost your workers’ motivation. Namely, they will feel more appreciated, more committed to achieving the company’s goals, and included in big decisions regarding its future development. Most importantly, you will indirectly nourish stronger relationships between your employees and encourage them to communicate with each other openly, which will certainly result in their better performance.
As a manager, you need to look for potential problem areas in your employees’ behavior and solve them as soon as possible. To do so, you first need to understand that each employee is different. They have different education levels, family issues, interests, and occupations. This is exactly why you need to put yourself in their shoes and come up with a personalized approach. Most importantly, you need to be available to them whenever the need arises.
For example, if you notice that an individual is underperforming, you should schedule a private meeting with them, ask them to explain how they see things, and find the right solution to their productivity problems. Remember, only by receiving detailed positive and negative feedback will your employees be able to improve their performance. If you start sweeping such problems under the carpet, you will be considered incapable of leading a group of people and managing the workload adequately.
No matter how neatly it plays out in your head, boosting your employees’ productivity in real life might be a daunting task. However, it is critical for creating an authentic corporate culture, earning your team’s trust, boosting the overall workplace productivity, and running your company like a well-oiled machine. Value your employees’ contribution, cherish their individuality, nurture stronger relationships, and you will create teams that can truly make a difference for your business in the years to come.
** About the Author: Emma Miller is a digital marketer from Sydney. Works as a blogger, Senior Editor for Bizzmark blog and a guest lecturer at Melbourne University. Miller is interested in digital marketing, social media, start-ups and latest trends.