Regardless of how big or small your business, motivated and valued employees are important. When employees lose their drive your business will suffer as their productivity and creativity drops. By not protecting one of the company’s most precious assets, your business will pay a heavy price that will affect profit and revenue, as well as customer experience and satisfaction. A lack of motivation will also see your business have a high turnover of staff, increasing the expense of continually training new staff and further damaging your bottom line. Below are the top five ways to keep your team happy, focused, and productive.
Have a clear path to success
Your employees want to succeed and feel like they are an important part of the company. While the goals of the business are important, they don’t want to feel like they are just another cog in the machine and expendable. Learn about their career goals and provide them with a business structure that rewards their efforts with advancement. Getting to know each person’s ambitions should be a key part of both the interview process and their induction.
Promote a positive environment
Happiness in your work is based on more than just getting paid and staff drinks. Employees need to feel that the workplace is a safe space where they can work to the best of their ability, knowing that if they have a problem or any issues, these can be raised without fear of alienation. Achieving this requires solid systems around HR processes and a clear line between colleagues and friends. The perception of favouritism is one of the biggest employee complaints and decisions that provide greater benefit to a particular employee should be transparent and justified.
Communicate clearly and honestly
Relationships live and die on communication and the employee/employer dynamic is no different. When people begin to feel that they can’t speak with their employer in a mature and honest way without fear of retribution, then the relationship begins to break down. Feedback must work both ways for a business to succeed and grow, and this is an ongoing process as a company gets larger and more layers of management are added. Ensuring your employees understand that their opinions and ideas, as well as their concerns, will be listened to and considered is key to maintaining a motivated workforce.
Have high expectations for success and a plan to achieve it
Many business owners and managers have the first part – the high expectations. However, they forget that they are running the show and it is their job to devise a path to success and get everyone on board. When an employee achieves what is required and the high standards expected, their willingness to undertake challenging work increases, along with their self-esteem. When an employer accepts a low standard of work or demands perfection without clearly defining what that means, motivation can plummet. An employee is selling their time to your company and if they don’t feel their top effort is required, they won’t give it. If your managers are incapable of creating a strategy that both expects excellence and rewards it, you will be left with mediocre work, disgruntled staff, and a low-quality product or service.
Keep your staff at the cutting edge of your industry
Employee learning programs are a great way to boost staff retention and morale. By training your team and keeping them up-to-date, your business will experience two key benefits. Firstly, your team will have the skills to perform their work to the highest standard, and secondly, your investment in them will enhance their loyalty as they will feel valued. Education could be in the form of management or sales training, industry seminars, or something more informal and specific to their day-to-day roles. Providing your employees with a deeper understanding of the business and their place within it will improve their confidence and make them more valuable and effective employees.
Invest in people for long-term success
Connecting your employees with your business is vital to ensure they remain engaged and pulling in the right direction. A demotivated or unhappy employee’s attitude and work ethic can poison a workplace and removing such staff won’t address the root cause. Create an environment that breeds and rewards success, as well as understands each employee’s goals and skills, and your company will reap the benefits.