8 Ideas for Motivating Your Team

Keeping your team motivated is key to building a thriving business culture. A Gallup poll on employee engagement and motivation found that highly-engaged teams are absent from work 41% less than those that are not and show a 17% rise in productivity. 

Despite that, the same study showed that only 33% of employees across the United States feel motivated by the work that they do. Any business owner or manager would rather be in that minority, but it can be challenging to find ways to keep employees driven. 

While there’s no cookie-cutter answer that works for every business, it’s worth trying a few different strategies to find the right answer for your particular group dynamic. We’ve rounded up 15 ideas to inspire your efforts in motivating your team.

Start with Empathy

The old adage of “treat others how you’d like to be treated” holds true in every attempt you make to inspire your employees. Before you try any strategy, ask yourself if you would be motivated by it and how you would like to see it implemented if you were in their shoes.

Treat Them as Professionals

Assuming you have good hiring practices in place, every person that you hire has some level of professionalism, whether they are new to the industry or not. As professionals, they should feel empowered to make career and personal choices, so long as they do not infringe on the choices of others.

Honor Their Time

It’s so easy to get lost in the work that you start expecting employees to give more and more of their time to the job. But, that’s a fast road to burnout, resentment, and resignation. Remember that their job is only one part of the bigger picture of their life. 

Listen Actively to the Good and the Bad

There’s no denying that hearing criticism can be painful and embarrassing, but outside perspective is an invaluable tool, especially when it comes from the people most affected by your decisions. If your team fears the thought of telling you when something isn’t working, it’s a sign to reevaluate the way you handle feedback.

Stay In Touch with the Reality of Their Jobs

At some point in their career, every leader will ask themselves, “Why do they complain so much? Can’t they see what I have to do all day?” While that’s mentality is perfectly normal, be mindful that you stop and reflect on it. You and your team don’t have the same job description, and it’s highly unlikely they are compensated to the same degree you are. It’s unreasonable to expect others to do things outside of their job description, especially if they are not being recognized financially for those contributions. 

Recognize the Need for a Camaraderie and Fun

Laughter, lightheartedness, and friendships are an asset to your workplace, as they encourage people to want to be there. Teams that get along are also more likely to hold themselves accountable because they care about what their colleagues think of them. Obviously, there is a point where fun becomes chaos, but set that standard as part of the overall culture, and work will be a more pleasant place for everyone involved. 

Skip the Cheesy Routines

Forcing everyone together to repeat a mantra each morning is not what adults want, nor is it a good motivational tool. Mantras, self-reflection, and mediation are private experiences for many people, not something to be dictated by their bosses. There are far better, more meaningful ways to create a sense of togetherness and belonging.

Know That You Can’t Make Everyone Happy

No matter what you do, how generous you are with your staff, or how often you seek their feedback, you’re likely to encounter at least one person who doesn’t get with the program. That’s okay! As long as they continue doing their job, cheerful enthusiasm isn’t typically a requirement unless they work in customer service. Know that the others are appreciative of your efforts!

Motivating your team is a worthwhile endeavor and well-worth the investment.Soon, you’ll find that your team works more like a well-oiled machine and less like a collection of parts trying to function in their own separate niches. 

Let CGECR help you figure out the magic formula for sparking inspiration, kindling enthusiasm, and motivating your team wherever you lead!

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