How to Motivate Your Team
Culture Based Motivation
These types of motivators will depend on the overall feel of your company and the culture you are trying to create; if you are more professional, the standard enticement is bonuses. These can be gradually increasing depending on the size of the project or goal, or a standard amount added to a paycheck for outstanding work or finishing a task well before a deadline. For those companies who have looser regulations, some incentives could include chocolate subscriptions, monthly parties, beer days, something that gets the team together and indulging on a communal payoff. Parties around the office are also an option, whether it’s for birthdays, national holidays, or celebrating a company achievement, the little bursts of festivities break up the longer periods of the year where there are no holidays.
Goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely (a.k.a SMART, pretty smart, eh? Sorry, I couldn’t help myself) lead to a higher success rate in these goals. You need to make sure you are constantly checking in on these goals to make sure they are on track. Individual and company goals should be set, but ensure that the two are synonymous so that employees aren’t just focusing on the goals that benefit them, but that those that they complete ultimately further the company. The employee goals should have regular check-ins so that nothing lags behind, perhaps have smaller rewards associated to the smaller goals, like bringing them in a specialty coffee the next day, or a certain snack, or a visual aid to track progresses, a little friendly competition between co-workers never hurt anyone, right?
An integral part of making sure your employees are happy, is asking them! Having an open channel of communication where employees know they can voice concerns, and be heard, are indicators of a healthy workplace. This is up to the boss to create a balance between leader and friend, both are part of the job. If you are too friendly with your staff, they won’t take you seriously, but being too strict warrants a lack of communication leading to you not being able to properly take care of your team. Schedule quarterly check-ins to keep accountability and ask them if they are doing what they like or if there is anything else they’d like to have added to their tasks that would make things more enjoyable. More often than not, a compromise can be made. If that route is taken, check in a bit more regularly with that person, say with a one on one, to make sure that their satisfaction and morale has improved, that perfect balance is achievable! Other ways can include weekly satisfaction surveys, and employee engagement surveys to help you keep on top of the moods.
No matter what, work is work, and while we should all count ourselves lucky that we get to go to work almost every day and are given the opportunity to make a living for ourselves. This doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy where we work or that we can’t make work fun for our staff. As long as the rewards are appropriate to a work setting, there are any number of prizes and incentives you can implement. Motivation will be the key to keeping your team engaged and enthused throughout their career.