How to Keep Your Employees Motivated, Engaged, and Moving Forward
It's a long stretch between the holidays and the first days off of spring. The cold, dark days of winter can make your employees feel dreary and unmotivated, especially if their work environment lacks direction and purpose.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though.
Read on to learn some tips and tricks that Intelligent Office’s small business owner members have used to motivate and engage their employees between the holidays and springtime. When you implement these ideas, your employees will feel better and perform better. As a result, poor performance won’t lead to poor business results for your company.
First, look at how much you’re paying your team
There are plenty of ways to motivate employees, but let’s start with the basics: compensation and benefits.
Recent inflation has decreased everyone’s spending power. Healthcare and childcare costs are through the roof, and last year’s salary simply won’t go as far. If you want your employees to perform at their best, make sure you’re paying a competitive wage and offering the benefits they need to survive and thrive.
After all, your team won’t be able to focus at work if they’re worried about affording rent and groceries. If raises aren’t possible, see if you can offer other benefits, like the ones listed in this article.
Give employees regular praise and recognition
Regular raises and cost-of-living increases are always appreciated, but you also need to focus on the day-to-day work environment to keep your team motivated and moving forward.
Fortunately, there’s something that employees do remember — and it doesn’t cost a dime.
People love to be appreciated. They remember praise. Whether it's a kind word, a handwritten note, or a small token of your appreciation, even the smallest gesture can help employees remain motivated.
Communicate your vision and values (clearly and often)
Today’s employees want to know what their employer stands for. When they have no idea where the company is going or what its values are, it can feel downright unnerving.
As the economy continues to gain momentum, employees will have more choices about where they work. People who are uncertain of your company's mission are far more likely to jump ship — and it could very well be that they land with your competition.
That’s why it’s so important to share your company’s mission, values, and to plan for the future with your team.
A mission statement is a great place to start, and this guide will help you review and revise your brand’s guiding principles. Update yours in January, and use it as a conversation starter with your team. You’ll be surprised by how motivating this simple act can be.
Ask your team what they need to succeed
You are not psychic.
Whether you have six employees or six hundred, there is no foolproof way for you to be certain that every single employee is receiving the tools, training, support, and encouragement that they need to be successful in their role.
Fortunately, there are tons of assessment tools, performance review strategies, and other measurements that can help you determine whether your employees really are happy, and if not, why.
To learn more, try plugging keywords like these into your favorite search engine:
- Employee assessment tools
- Employee engagement survey questions
- Performance review best practices
- Employee training and development tips
Give back to your community
One of the most powerful movements in the corporate world is the notion of corporate social responsibility, which simply means that companies have a duty to give something back to the communities that support their businesses.
Whether you support workplace giving or a volunteer day of service, there are lots of ways to give your employees a genuine sense of generosity. It's a small investment that will definitely have a positive effect on team morale.
You can even choose something that supports the company’s mission statement and values — your team likely has plenty of ideas to contribute, so don’t hesitate to ask them how they’d prefer to give back.
Whether you implement one, two, or even all five of these tips, we have a feeling your employees will feel more engaged and motivated during winter and beyond.