You may have the best business idea ever, the most efficient means of production and enough money to invest in its development, but if your employees are not motivated to work for the company’s goal, you will end up losing anyway. According to The Engagement Institute, unsatisfied and unmotivated employees can cost companies between $450 and $550 billion annually. Scary figures, aren’t they? Fortunately, disengaged employees don’t have to stay that way. There are some strategies you can try in order to encourage them to participate and perform better.
Minimize the workplace stress
The fact that about 80% of workers feel stressed on their job and that 25% of employees see their workplace as the number one stressor in their life is speaking a lot about how managers treat their workers. Don’t be one of those managers who create unnecessary tension. Understand the position of your employees, and set reasonable expectations of them. Have a positive attitude and approach them respectfully.
Determine your employees’ potential
A common source of workplace stress is doing something you are not good at. Each of your employees excels in a certain area, and you will not be able to learn what that area is unless you assess their capabilities, interests and talents. The job they signed up for might not be the job for them, but that doesn’t mean they need to stay in that position if there is room for them in some other areas.
Are you obsessed with micro-managing everything? Because if you are, you are not only exhausting yourself, but also discouraging your employees from stepping up and being better at what they do. Instead of robbing them of their independence, you should encourage decision-making at the lower levels and inspire all your employees to show initiative. Who knows how many great ideas can be born that way?
Respect their time
The traditional nine to five working hours are slowly becoming obsolete, as the generation of Millennials is taking the reins of the business world. They don’t care as much about stable working hours, and they prefer working when they are the most productive and still having time for their personal life. Offer your employees all that with flexible working hours and the possibility of telecommuting.
Don’t burden them with too many tasks
Businesses, especially startups, have a habit of giving their employees too many tasks and expecting them to learn on-the-go. However, this is never a good thing, because they won’t be able to excel in their areas of expertise and they will burn out quickly. Companies like The Pipeline allow you to outsource your customer service, while there are also other companies that can handle your IT department and bookkeeping.
Provide in-office engagement activities
When people who work together can’t stand each other, it is difficult and stressful to perform even the simplest tasks. In-office engagement activities can help with that and give your company a boost. Some activities that could be useful are forming a book club that would meet once a week, volunteering together once a month, sharing recipes, having a movie night, etc.
Don’t insist on relationship bans
Relationship bans are an archaic way of keeping the things in the office “in order”. However, when people spend a lot of time together, especially if they work longer hours, it is normal for them to get close and sometimes even end up in a relationship. Relationship bans create an unnecessary tension and force your employees to keep secrets for you.
Communicate with your employees
Communication is the foundation of every successful business. There are two types of workplace communication that needs to be maintained: between the employees and between the employees and the management. This means that the employees should be encouraged to share their ideas or problems with you and that you should respond to them. Also, it is important to maintain the one-on-one communication. This way, you can deal with any potential issues as soon as they arise, but also recognize progress and reward achievements.
If there ever has been any doubt about the correlation between the employees’ happiness and company’s success, today we know better. Use these strategies to engage your employees, and you will see that the growth of your business is inevitable.
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