Are you managing an office or are handling a team of few people, the there are certain scenarios that are painfully familiar, irrespective of the industry you belong to. Almost all the leaders and managers out there are facing a problem or two. Now, let us describe a scenario for you and we are sure that you would instantly correlate with the same:
After years of hard work and dedication, you finally have a team of your own and it is nothing less than a dream team that every manager desires, well that is what the papers are telling you. You have undergone the tedious selection and hiring process and now can’t wait to start off with your team. The background checks have been done and you are sure that with the combined efforts, you can take the team and eventually, the company to the next level.
For starters, the beginning was simply amazing and you can’t thank enough for your team mates. They are filled with optimism, enthusiasm and have bundles of great ideas! But after a few days, you can actually feel that the life is gone from the whole team. Though there isn’t any problem in the daily work, there is something missing and you can’t pinpoint it. Now, let’s talk about your favorite, the star performer of your team who has impressed you with her skills. Initially, she gave you the best ever results and quality data, but now, you feel as if the spark is missing. And it isn’t just the inclination; you have seen the signs in her work, including silly mistakes, sloppiness and lack in the creativity.
And the fact that your team members can do wonders, but aren’t doing is eating you up. What exactly is going on? Well, we have analyzed the whole situation and there is one good and one bad news for you. The bad news is that there is a lack of motivation in your team and the good news is that this problem is something that can be dealt with ease. So, before you start searching for a new team, why don’t you give the below mentioned ideas a try. These are some of the tried and tested ideas that can rekindle the lost spark in your employees and would make every single team member a star performer.
Always Recognize a Job Well Performed
Recognition? But why? They are getting paid for what they are doing? This is what most of the managers and HR respond when they are asked how they recognize a job well performed. And this is one of the grave mistakes that you are committing. Everybody, whether it’s the under performer or the star performer, is getting paid and it is the recognition that makes a difference. Any kind of recognition creates an emotional bond between the employee and employer and this is can be very important when it comes to employee engagement.
And the best part of the recognition that it is completely free of cost. You can send a personally drafted appreciation mail or simply appreciate the efforts of the employee during the weekly meeting. Corporate gifts are another way of motivating the employees.
Turn All the Major Tasks into Games
Searching for a perfect motivator that works for everyone? Then, use this amazing idea of converting all the major tasks into games. Most of the corporate giants use the strategy of gamification of an important task to meet the deadlines and to get the best out of the employees. Now, the question arises, how would you add the elements of a game into the tasks? Here, you need to think of any virtual game where every time a player crosses a milestone, a badge is unlocked. To help you with this, you can try the following steps:
- Use medals for employees who are participating in the task
- Badges that would be given at the time of hitting any weekly targets that can be a sales number or any quality driven target
- Monthly trophies for the star performers who performed exceptionally well
Go for Intrinsic Rewards
Well, there is not even an iota of doubt in the fact that money is important. After all, it is the money that pays your rent and bills and gets food on the table. But using money as the motivator is the worst mistake that a company could commit. According to a recent study, after a certain amount, money doesn’t affect the contentment and satisfaction and therefore, it can’t work as a good motivator.
Many companies go for different extrinsic rewards such as a hike in pay, incentives, shares, titles, separate office as motivators, but it is the core values that should be targeted. To target such values, you have to create them and they would represent the essence of your company. Ensure that these core values are visible and something that is frequently talked about and instilled in the employees through awards, quizzes and by simply practicing them.
Team Autonomy is Important
Autonomy is something that every human being desires. You would seldom find a person who doesn’t want to have control over the time and energy that he spends on a particular job. Whenever you decentralize the power and grant autonomy to the team, it is one of the ways of showing your trust over them and this trust helps to form a long lasting bond between the employer and the employee and this is what would help you in employee retention as well.
When compared with all the other motivators, autonomy is the one that is the most effective as it is directly linked with the trust. The real key lies in giving your team the complete ownership and control- and this shouldn’t only be limited to the projects only. You can give them autonomy in their schedule and time offs as well.
Find Out What Makes Your Team Excited
One thing that any counselor can tell you is that no two employees are same and you have to stop treating them according to your set standards. Some are extroverts while others can be introverts. Some might get a kick from adventurous activities and enjoy the thrill of exploring the undiscovered while some may feel good in the familiar place. Some are team players while some are lone performers. Some are in the early stage of their career while a few might be on the verge of getting retired. In other words, you are going to find a lot of variation in the backgrounds, individuality, passions and personalities of the team members.
And in such a scenario, the worst mistake that you can make is forcing them to work on the same level and motivating them according to your preset standards. When you have a diverse workforce, spend some time with each employee to know them better. Don’t just focus on the work; rather than the usual day work, try to find out what motivates them outside the office. And you would find the perfect motivator for that person.
Well, just like not one size fits all, not all the strategies are going to work for your team. Try each strategy and analyze the results. And after a few months, you would find that you have the perfect motivator strategy with you. Or you can always go for the combination of the above mentioned strategies as it would keep the working environment fun and active.