Hi, Bare Bones Consulting! We’ve just launched a start-up and are yet to turn a profit. Any low cost suggestions to tap into employee motivation to keep us moving forward?
Congratulations on launching your new venture and you’ve asked a great question…not only for a new business but for anyone with employees.
Any HR Consultant can offer solutions to an employment challenge by throwing money (usually yours!) at it. For the purposes of addressing your “yet to turn a profit” scenario, let’s focus on two things: cost and return on investment (ROI).
Employers often fall into the trap of linking employee motivation with tangible rewards: cash bonuses, gift cards, etc. And these are fine…showing your appreciation by providing such occasional gifts can be a great way of recognising outstanding performance.
Behavioural research however, shows that money, incentives and rewards produce only temporary compliance. Why? Because these types of motivators do not change the attitudes that can contribute to our underlying behaviours, nor do they change any values or commitments we hold.
It’s logical that a motivator will not motivate if what’s on offer is not important to the individual.
Easiest way to identify what someone values at work? Talk to them. When you take the time to find out a little more about each person in your team (or train your Team Leaders in the right ways to do this), you identify what already motivates the individual. This might be recognition, career opportunities, serving a greater purpose, becoming a subject matter expert, or something entirely different. Knowing the motivators of each individual in your team can be gold when it comes to employee engagement…keeping your team members performing at a higher level for longer.
ROI? According to Gallup, highly engaged workplaces were found to be 21% more profitable and 17% more productive. They were also 41% less likely to have problems with absenteeism.
We’ve written before about successful employers and their recognition of the importance of scheduling regular discussions with employees. These conversations help clarify goals for individuals and provide constructive feedback to guide employees to perform at their best. Done well, they can also provide you early indicators of HR issues before they become problems, suggestions for business improvement and greater overall staff satisfaction levels. Dollar cost of these conversations (aside from your time)? Zero. Why wouldn’t you give it a shot?
Holding these conversations is easy. We can help with suggestions on the best place to start, most effective frequency of discussions and the right questioning framework to use. Give Bare Bones Consulting a call: we provide simple, effective and value for money strategies to get the best from your people. And that’s dollars to you.
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