Happy workers make a happy workplace, and a more creative and productive organization.
Imagine arriving early, while sipping your morning coffee, looking out your office window seeing the eager, smiling faces of your employees stepping out of their cars and stepping lively inside to start their work day. This isn’t an impossible dream.
Employee attitudes about their jobs, their employers, their fellow workers, and their customers almost always seeps down from the top. There are at least eight ways you can improve the attitudes of your employees and create a happier, more creative, and more productive work place at the same time.
1. Be clear: Communicate your company’s goals. Ask your key people what their three or four top priorities are and to the extent possible align your company goals with those of your employees. By helping your people reach their goals, you’ll be accelerating your company toward it’s goals.
2. Training should be constant and never-ending. About 90% of mistakes are the result of inadequate training. When employees make mistakes, focus them on what they learned, not what they did wrong.
3. Set a hands-on example: Great leaders roll up their sleeves, dig in, and get dirty when necessary. This goes a long way toward eliminating this: “It’s not my job.” The company’s success is everybody’s job. And, everybody’s success is the company’s job too.
4. Listen: Be open-minded. Listen to your people-they’re on the front lines. Collect all the facts. Act decisively. Communicate why you made the decision and what the likely benefit to everyone, including the customer, and the company will be.
5. Give credit: Study after study has concluded that the number one motivator of people is not money, but is the recognition of a necessary job well done. Catch people doing something right, even little things, and tell them “good job on that.” It’s even more powerful if you have witnesses.
6. Take responsibility: When things go wrong, take some responsibility. Who hired them? Who trained them? The great football coach Paul “Bear” Bryant said when his team won, the players did a good job. When his team lost, they should have been coached better.
7. Challenge people: Don’t limit your people to their job description. Encourage them to step out, to take action on their ideas. After all, if a person never does more than what they are paid to do, why should they ever get a raise or a promotion.
8. Reward great performance: Rewards don’t always have to be money, but money is nice. Ask your employees what they value most, and match the reward to the achievement. An afternoon or a day off, tickets to a concert or an athletic event, taking them to lunch or dinner. Little things go a long way.
True motivation is self-motivation.
One cannot acquire true motivation from another person, no matter how dynamic or persuasive that person may be. So you won’t be motivating your employees by implementing these steps. You will, however, create an environment in which your employees will motivate themselves. By encouraging your employees to stretch themselves, and by challenging them, and by appreciating their necessary work well done, your positive affirmations will plant in their subconscious attitudes of doing and achieving.
Continued exposure to these positive management techniques will create within your employees a desire large enough to overcome virtually every obstacle that stands between them and their success.
What are your thoughts? Do you agree or disagree? Leave your comments in the box below.