Want to keep your employees motivated? Follow these 10 simple steps

“(Employees) want to be engaged and motivated, doing work that feels meaningful and makes the most of their talents and strengths.”
— Gallup’s 2017 State of the American Workplace report

Employee motivation is fast emerging as one of the most valuable incentives in the workplace. Staying motivated means staying inspired and staying happy. And that directly impacts employee performance and productivity. According to a recent study by the University of Warwick, “happy” employees are 12% more productive at work.

Engagement forms the backbone of employee motivation strategies. It has been found that employee engagement is 3 times more affected by intrinsic motivators — like praises, positivity, encouragement — than extrinsic motivators, like a paycheck, bonus, etc. This is simple business sense for organizational leaders: If your employees stay engaged at work, it leads to higher motivation. If they are not, they just move on.

The prime driver of employee motivation in the workplace is the leadership. More than anyone else, business leaders need to encourage employees to take risks and embrace failures while constantly mentoring and providing opportunities for growth and development. It’s easy.

Empower employees

An employee with a fat pay packet but no empowerment in the organization is a well-paid liability. Unless they are given a sense of ownership, they can’t stay motivated. Make them manage projects, head a presentation or run a team — empowering employees not only increases the ever-elusive trust between the management and staff, but also makes them more attached to the company.

Communicate transparently

Ask a random sample of 20 employees around you whether they know the latest in company announcements or not. You will see most of them will draw a blank. Clarity of information breeds trust in the workplace. Clearly communicating company announcements, strategy, results, and news makes employees stay updated and find a sense of attachment with the organization.

Hear them out

A good listener is not only a good speaker, but a great leader as well. A superb way to make your workforce feel valued is encouraging feedback and opinions from your employees and tweaking business decisions/ announcements accordingly. You will be amazed, the best ideas are always around you.

Set individual goals

Employees get that push to work efficiently when they know exactly what the company expects them to do and why. According to a Gallup report, when a manager involves employees in goal-setting, they are 3.6 times more likely to be engaged at work. Give them a sense of purpose at work and watch them stay motivated.

Promote remote work

Gone are the 9-5 office hours. Desks are giving way to the deskless. With blurring geographical boundaries and the rise of millennials, the world is now mobile — 31% US workers claim they work remotely 80%-100% of the time. It’s a no-brainer that remote working is the new reality that businesses need to encourage to keep their employees engaged.

Encourage teamwork

Silos are dying a natural death in organizations. If your employees work as a team and compete healthily with peers, they stay inspired at work and never miss out on anything. This has a positive impact on individual and team performance.

Be inclusive

If you expect your team, consisting of desk-based and non-desk workers, to deliver results equally, you can’t be unequal while reaching out to them. According to an SHRM report, 65% employees feel respectful treatment of all employees at all levels is very important to feel satisfied and, thus, motivated at work.

Foster a positive environment

An atmosphere of trust, freedom, harmony, generosity, and fun at the workplace makes employees happy. Be it with interaction with top leadership, fun social events or even a thank you note, companies with happy employees outperform their competitors by 20%. If the employees stay positive, business results turn positive.

Bring in innovation

Innovation kills boredom at work. And your employees, especially millennials, hate boredom. Know the pulse of your team and introduce innovation to them. Be it a new AI-powered communication app, creative workspaces or even a voice-controlled coffee machine, bringing in novelty to your employees can be rewarding.

Recognize efforts

Admit it: Everyone wants to be appreciated. But did you know that money is not the key reward that keeps employees motivated at work? In a survey by Westminster College, around 30% US employees said boosting morale and giving recognition and praises were top employee motivation methods they would prefer. Beware, if employees feel underappreciated at work, they will find out a better alternative. Sometimes a shout-out in the work bay can do wonders!

Keeping your workforce engaged and motivated doesn’t take much. You just need to know how to make a start.

SHRM TECH 2019

Meet us at

Booth E3 at Ritz Carlton DIFC, Dubai
24-25 Feb