It is important to enact policies to motivate your workers throughout their employment. Motivation is the process of getting employees fired up about their job and eager to help the company succeed. This is not just for the employee's benefit -- an employee motivation plan is crucial to a company's overall success.
Employee motivation is directly linked to productivity. You can relate the need for motivation to your own personal tasks. For instance, if you’re not motivated to clean up your house it may take forever for you to get up, start tidying up and finish the job. But if you know your parents are coming over that is a motivator to help get you started. Employers use this same concept when attempting to motivate employees — the motivation policy is usually tied to some type of future goal or aspiration. It is important to use positive reinforcement. As Tyler Mitchell, CEO of an incentives company, says, “…an organization should strive to utilize positive reinforcement as opposed to punishment to motivate employees.”
One way that managers can motivate employees is to actively involve them in the decision-making process. When workers feel that they are directly tied to the results of the business, they’re often more eager to do their part to help the company. Another common motivation policy is to offer bonuses or other financial incentives, such as profit-sharing plans. Finally, a nonmonetary motivation policy can work also, such as promotions, days off or public events to recognize the progress of employees. The main purpose is to give employees something to look forward to as a result of working hard for the company.
Enacting a Policy
Once you decide on your motivation method (or methods) the next step is to write it into an official policy for your company to follow. Consult with all managers and review the policy for potential issues before putting it into writing. If the motivation policy involves compensation, go over the plan with your accounting team to determine a compensation schedule that the company can afford. Incorporate the new motivation policy into your employee manual and also distribute it to employees (including managers) as a memo.
If the motivation techniques you have chosen do not work, don't be afraid to adjust the policy later. Get feedback from workers both before and after you enact the policy so that you can make smart decisions. Listen to your employees every step of the way to develop an employee motivation policy that increases both productivity and profits over time.
- Accel Team Development: Employee Motivation – Theory and Practice
- Management Study Guide: Importance of Motivation
- Inside Arm.com: Employee Motivation 101: You Can Catch More Flies with Honey than with Vinegar; Tyler Mitchell; Feb. 25, 2011
- "USA Today": Listen to Your Employees to Help Grow Your Company; Michael Crom; Dec. 10, 2010