In tough economic times it is tempting to put any motivation concerns to one side and focus purely on everyday pressures. However, it is more important than ever to keep staff energized in periods of difficulty, as periods of uncertainty will make individuals even more dependent on leadership. The good news a huge injection of cash is not always required, and below are a few of the many other ways in which staff motivation can be enhanced.
The first suggestion is a simple one; dish out praise generously and do not neglect incentives. Just taking the time to say well done is a really quick way to make people feel special. Verbal praise from a manager should not be underestimated and letting someone know they are a vital contributor is a great morale booster. Every now and then, offer slightly bigger rewards, such as a bottle of wine or take an employee out for lunch, or even an incentive scheme to ensure people really push themselves.
Good two-way communication is also important. Try giving your staff a chance to voice their opinions directly to you and in special problem-solving groups. Furthermore, if you act on an employee’s advice or opinion then let them know, as this will build up trust and make staff feel involved. Operating an open-door policy and generally being visible and available is another way of promoting a familiarity that makes employees want to do well.
There are many other ways to energize staff and generate loyalty, but just implementing a few of these tactics might result in a surprising increase in motivation and morale, irrespective of economic circumstance.