Staff motivation

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It is impossible to assess the quality and productivity of a company without assessing the usefulness and efficiency of each employee. Human resource is a variable of business processes, therefore it is important to ensure the stability of the quality of the "labor reserves" and constantly measure the level of productivity of the team.

The decisive factor that negatively affects the productivity and efficiency of both the company as a whole and the individual employee is low staff motivation. The model of labor relations that has developed in the post-Soviet economic space still largely repeats the Soviet system, when employers use the "stick" rather than the "carrot" for incentives, and the workers do their duties half-heartedly. While an important condition for the development of the company is just full involvement in work and sincere interest.

To form and maintain employee interest in the conscientious performance of tasks and the achievement of the company's overall goals, modern leaders combine various methods of personnel motivation.

So, what is the essence of the staff motivation process?

Business psychology uses two basic concepts that differ from each other, but are rarely used separately. This is the motivation and stimulation of staff.

Motivation is the emergence or creation of internal factors that induce work to be done. Motivation works through a person's self-awareness and is a product of mental activity. Incentives for personnel implies the impact of external factors that encourage and induce employees to continue their activities. With the help of incentive techniques, you can increase staff motivation. However, it is impossible to directly influence motivation, since it is related to the feelings and experiences of the employee himself.

By motivating staff, managers strive to:

  • to increase the efficiency of the individual employee and teamwork;
  • stimulate staff development;
  • retain permanent staff and exclude staff turnover;
  • set goals and orient staff to achieve results in a given time frame.

The general personnel motivation system is based on several basic principles:

Gradualness means that it is not practical to reward workers with large bonuses right away. Employees are constantly developing a new threshold of expectations, therefore, to maintain interest in the next stage of motivation, bonuses will have to be increased, which will lead to unnecessary expenses for the company.

Sensibility implies that remuneration in any form should be meaningful and directly dependent on the position, privileges, and achievements of the employee. For the emergence of motivation, it is important to find a middle ground, to take into account the gradual and tangible increase in remuneration.

Accessibility helps to choose transparent ways of motivation and incentives that are understandable to each employee. Different approaches to motivation should be justified taking into account the length of service, position, workload, and other aspects.

Complexity involves taking into account a variety of theories of motivation and an approach that alternates or combines several types of material and non-material rewards. It is important to understand what is more expensive for a specific employee, and do not underestimate the importance of verbal forms of encouragement.

Timeliness indicates the importance of timing. It is better to immediately note the merit of the staff in any way, it is not recommended to delay the moment. The employee must feel significant all the time, so some companies switched to weekly wages.

Along with the positive method of motivation in the domestic corporate culture, there is still a way of motivating employees, which is based on a negative impact. This means that for any wrong action or ineffectiveness of work, fines and sanctions are imposed. However, the “negative” method is gradually giving way to practices focused on reward and other positive methods of motivation.

Types of staff motivation

[monetary and non-monetary]
  • salary;
  • awards and bonuses;
  • percentage of profit;
  • social package, for example, health insurance;
  • discounts on own products or services;
  • shares;
  • gifts and other forms.
  • congratulations;
  • motivating planning meetings;
  • training and refresher courses;
  • equipped places for recreation, for example, a kitchen;
  • the right to choose, for example, where to park or when lunch;
  • informing about achievements in the form of a traditional board of honor, a corporate newspaper or an internal portal;
  • the possibility of feedback;
  • professional skill contests;
  • incentive corporate events (banquets, picnics, going to the cinema or theater) and other forms.

Effective ways to motivate staff

A well-thought-out personnel motivation system contributes to sustainable business development. Moreover, non-material methods of stimulating employees also help to successfully solve problems, which is especially important at the start of a project or during a crisis. What are the ways to increase staff motivation and create a relaxed work environment in the team?

Salary is the basic way to motivate staff, without which all other methods are ineffective. The amount of remuneration can be fixed or flexible, the main thing is to discuss all questions about money at the stage of concluding an employment contract with a new employee and reach an understanding on the mechanism of payment and payment for labor. It is important not only to correctly assess the ratio of the volume of work and wages but also to regularly revise the existing proportion to maintain the level of wages at a decent level, without underestimation.

Praise should not be neglected. The word "thank you" is not an automatic act of politeness, but a simple way to show the employee the value of his work. Oral gratitude is always appropriate and, as a form of motivation, does not require any expenses.

In large companies, a simple and effective way to motivate staff is calling by name. Experience suggests that calling an employee by name inspires and motivates you to perform better. Of course, the manager will have to make an effort to remember all the personnel in person, but there are other ways to solve the problem, for example, to make it a rule to wear personalized badges.

Productivity also stimulates the opportunity to get unplanned rest. This privilege does not work well "by default", but, for example, as a way to reward the best employee of the week or month.

One of the effective material ways of rewarding personnel is considered to be meritorious gifts or on the occasion of holidays. Corporate gifts, be they stationary, small furnishings, or accessories, should be practical first and foremost. The company logo on the gift will unobtrusively remind you of the work from a pleasant side. A logical development of the direction will be the presentation of gifts to children or families of employees, which will enhance the effect and positively affect the motivation of staff.

The attitude to work also depends on such factors as the clarity of the task and assessment criteria. Employees are more willing to complete tasks if they don't have to figure out what the boss meant. It's a good idea to put your daily or weekly plan on public display and mark progress as you achieve intermediate results.

To motivate employees to act more energetically, management should be allowed to grow. A clear scheme of career growth will help not to hire an employee from outside, but to “grow” over time the necessary specialist within the company, further stimulating him with the help of material motivation.

Each employee, regardless of his position in the company, has his own opinion about his job responsibilities and needs, as well as the work of the company as a whole. Taking into account the opinion of employees, especially regarding organizational issues, serves as an additional incentive for conscientious work. Also, a fresh perspective will help identify the company's strengths and weaknesses. Another way to use feedback for motivation is to invite employees to independently choose the criteria by which their work will be assessed, and based on opinions, form an individual KPI system.

Plus, the staff can become a "bank of ideas" where the management can draw tips and non-standard solutions to problems. It is important to listen to each employee without rejecting the initiative at the very beginning. This method of non-financial motivation will give an additional impetus to the development of the team and the company as a whole.

Maintaining contact is important for both parties: the boss and the subordinate. Steve Jobs, for example, took the time to walk with front-line employees and discuss personal and work issues with them in a relaxed atmosphere. It is enough to personally respond to the letters of employees to establish mutual understanding and respect. Realizing that an employee is appreciated stimulates the desire to work and increases motivation at no additional cost.

The honor roll is a classic way to highlight employee merits and encourage healthy competition in a team. This traditional method of staff motivation is still used by McDonald's: in every restaurant of the chain, both colleagues and visitors see a photo of the best employee of the month. A similar scheme is the “motivation board”. This is a new technique of marking up results and other corporate performance metrics on a whiteboard. Employees get the opportunity to evaluate their performance in dynamics, progress towards achieving their goals, and compare with the performance of other employees. Such "summaries" will activate healthy competition in the team, will include a competitive spirit between teams from different departments.

Free lunches, reimbursement of the cost of travel, payment of mobile communications - if the company can afford such material methods of motivation, in return it will receive not only more motivated but also more loyal employees.

Flexible working hours or the ability to work from home can increase not only motivation but also productivity. However, this method of increasing motivation has several limitations. Remote work with a flexible schedule is not suitable for all professionals and is associated with additional risks, for example, non-fulfillment of duties or information leaks.

The informal pastime of the team, for example, joint excursions, going to the cinema, or corporate picnic trips, not only contributes to the rest of the employees but also, with proper organization, strengthens the team spirit necessary for effective work.

"Cleaning manager" instead of "cleaning lady" sounds like a joke. And yet, an employee's job title works as a motivation factor. In some cases, from a psychological point of view, it is enough to rename the position so that the specialist continues to perform his duties with great enthusiasm.

Public praise as a motivational tool needs to be handled with caution, as it risks hurting the feelings of other employees. However, it is quite effective, especially when combined with a gift or cash reward. To maintain a work environment, it is best to express gratitude to several employees from different departments at once on an objective basis.

The most common material method is the issuance of bonuses. The amount of bonus accruals is often fixed and is awarded depending on how much the employee coped with the tasks or exceeded the plan.

Employee training at the expense of the company solves several problems at once. This is an opportunity to improve the professionalism of the team and at the same time to accelerate the progress in the work of the company. Refresher courses, participation in conferences and seminars, attending masterclasses, access to paid online lectures - all this will allow employees to maintain competence, and the company will receive an improvement in the quality of goods or services.

A new type of cooperation between the company and employees, which works great as a way to increase motivation, is an option when an employee has shares in the company, which are profitable at the end of the month. So the employees are maximally interested in the profitability of the company and are convinced from their own experience that only in the case of effective work of each team member will there be a positive result and monetary reward.

And in general, employees need to feel independence and self-sufficiency, then their effectiveness and motivation will increase significantly. A certain degree of freedom is also needed in control. The employee should have the authority to independently control his activities and make decisions on minor issues without the participation of management. The leader, in turn, should be aimed primarily at assessing the result, and not the process of completing tasks. To monitor the discipline and productivity of the team, you can use automatic control programs with a hidden mode function.

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Many of the presented methods of personnel motivation do not require large expenditures and restructuring of established business processes. And at the same time, I promote the establishment of contact between management and the team, improve labor efficiency, help to obtain sustainable economic results, and maintain a healthy atmosphere in the team.