Make Sure You’re Offering BOTH Types of Employee Motivation
Regardless of the quality of service or product, the company offering it isn’t going to succeed without the help of its employees. When its employees are highly motivated, a company can easily face all hurdles from the competition and fluctuating market conditions. When its workforce is de-motivated, however, the company risks its very existence regardless of the bright business prospects it may have.
Motivating employees is important in order to keep them productive. Whether it is a simple praise for a job well done or a costly incentive like a paid vacation package, management efforts on employee motivation always reflect positively on the company’s bottom line. For this reason, business owners need to adopt policies and institute programs that boost employee morale and increase motivation.
There are two forms of motivation: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic motivation is internal and involves getting an employee personally interested in performing his job to the best of his abilities. On the other hand, extrinsic motivation refers to external promptings for the employee to do a good job.
Developing Intrinsically Motivated Employees
Intrinsically motivated employees work because their jobs give them pleasure and a sense of fulfillment. They have to like and appreciate their job to be motivated to put in their best. Otherwise, even a lucrative salary and a host of perks can lead to job dissatisfaction and eventual resignation, if not poor performance and a stressed life.
To develop intrinsic motivation in employees, give them a definite purpose and build their passion for their work. They need to be challenged and given the opportunity to own their jobs. They should be encouraged to innovate and explore ways by which they can maximize their potentials for the greater good of everyone. And most of all, they should believe in the excellence of the company and its products and services so they feel proud to be part of it.
While the business owners or their HR manager starts the motivation process by giving employees their duties and responsibilities, it is crucial for the immediate supervisor to monitor not only an employee’s quality of performance and output but also his motivation level and participation in the team’s activities. All employees should be encouraged to share what they think about new plans or projects. This is a clear signal that their contribution is recognized and that their opinion matters. As a result, their self-esteem rises and they are encouraged to contribute even more for the growth of the company.
Providing Extrinsic Motivation to Employees
Most companies strive hard to provide external motivation to their employees because they know that employees are inspired to work harder if they can look forward to awards, incentives, bonuses, and other forms of rewards. It is best for a company to develop a comprehensive program for its incentives scheme to include sales contests and the like where the goals and expected results are clearly stated. Awards are usually monetary in nature: cash bonuses or anything with financial value such as gift certificates, exotic trips, and even cars.
The motivational needs of employees differ from each other, however. A good manager must understand what makes each staff member tick and reward the employee accordingly. Sometimes, the pecuniary reward is not enough for or does not matter at all to an employee who values recognition and appreciation more. For such cases, it becomes necessary for an incentive program to include the awarding of plaques, trophies, pins, and other symbols of recognition.
Motivating employees is an important function of management takes concerted time and effort to be successful. Employers need to keep their workforce highly motivated to achieve their business goals. Employers and business owners can do so only if they develop the right strategies and have supportive policies in place.