Motivating Employees Every Day
When you talk to managers, one of the most common challenges they face is motivating employees to perform every day. If you are a manager that has problems motivating your employees, then you are extremely familiar with this dilemma. The notion that an employee should be motivated simply by his paycheck is the kind of thinking that creates large amounts of turnover and costs your company a lot of money in personnel replacement costs.
There are things that a company and a management team can do that will create ongoing motivation for employees and develop a productive workplace. When you find that ability to regularly inspire employees to perform, then you will be able to always get the maximum production from them at all times.
Reward Productivity, Punish Insubordination
One of the biggest mistakes managers make is in only rewarding employees that accomplish things. While it is extremely important to reward accomplishments, it is equally important to punish employees who show blatant insubordination. Employees who ignore managerial instructions, consistently call into work, avoid taking on responsibility and perform at a substandard level are just as dangerous to staff motivation as any other kind of negative factor.
When you establish clear guidelines for reward and punishment, and then enforce those guidelines uniformly, then it gives your employees a clear understanding of what is expected of them. It helps to give the feeling that the company is fair and that behavior is treated evenly among everyone.
While most employees are happy to get a paycheck, you can also use financial rewards to inspire employees to meet higher levels of productivity. Avoid short-term financial bonus plans that are only in effect for short periods of time. If your bonus program is only in effect for August, then performance in September will suffer.
Ongoing financial bonus programs tied to performance are extremely effective at motivating employees. For example, a profit sharing plan that pays employees a bonus as long as they maintained certain minimum performance numbers for the year will help make sure that you always get what you need from your staff. If you offer further financial incentives for employees that go beyond their minimum performance numbers, then that will raise productivity even more. Profit sharing plans are good because you are paying a percentage of profit that is above and beyond what the company had projected for the year. In a way, this kind of incentive plan costs the company nothing, but it will make the company extra money.
The notion that people like the occasional pat on the back for a job well done is extremely accurate. You need to keep your managers involved in daily work routines and encourage managers to recognize employees who have performed at high levels in simple ways. A hand-written “thank you” note from a manager or a visit from a manager to shake an employee’s hand for a good performance is much more encouraging than you may think. It is these simple, daily performance recognition that will keep your employees working hard and looking forward to getting thanked for the fine work that they do.