What is employee motivation?
Motivation is the psychological process that gets employees going, keeps them going, and determines the direction and level of effort they exert at work. If motivation is present, work performance is possible. Motivation and performance lead to personal outcomes for each employee.
Motivation in the Business Context
Employee motivation is a critical topic in business circles. Employers want to know how to keep their employees happy and productive. While there are no easy answers, there are definitely some things business owners can do to increase employee motivation. In this blog post, we’ll explore employee motivation and discuss some tips for keeping your team fired up. Stay tuned!
Understand what motivates your employees
Employee motivation is the level of energy, commitment, and creativity that a company’s workers bring to their jobs. Whether the economy is growing or shrinking, finding ways to motivate employees is a continuing concern of management—competing ideas stress either incentives or employee empowerment.
Employee Motivation refers to how driven and happy an employee is in their role. If employees are motivated, they are more likely to do a good job and work hard. Therefore, motivation is crucial for attracting employees, retaining employees, and general levels of productivity and commitment in a business.
What does a motivated employee look like?
Motivated employees don’t need to be told how to get things done; they take the initiative, are eager for additional responsibilities, and are innovative. Additionally, motivated employees ensure there is a positive atmosphere within the organization.
A motivated workplace is where employees feel happy, safe and concern themselves with the company’s performance. It should be the goal of every business to have all of its employees reach this level of employee motivation.
Types of Employee Motivation
There are two main types of motivation, extrinsic and intrinsic. Extrinsic motivation is when you use external factors to encourage your team to do what you want. For example, pay raises, time off, bonus checks, and the threat of job loss are all extrinsic motivators, some positive, some less so. Intrinsic motivation is internal.
What is meant by intrinsic motivation?
Intrinsic motivation is defined as doing an activity for its inherent satisfactions rather than for some separable benefit. When intrinsically motivated, a person is moved to act for the enjoyment or challenge entailed rather than because of external products, pressures, or rewards.
What do you mean by extrinsic motivation?
Extrinsic motivation involves completing a task or exhibiting a behavior because of external causes such as avoiding punishment or receiving a reward. For example, you might be intrinsically motivated to finish a task because you enjoy the project and want to do a good job.
What are examples of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation?
Intrinsically motivated employee behaviors are performed because of the sense of personal satisfaction they bring. Examples include feelings of accomplishment, satisfaction in doing a task, or a desire to be remembered. The extrinsic motivator is external and acts on transactional needs and desires. For example, rewards such as a job promotion, performance bonuses, or monetary incentives are good examples of extrinsic motivators.
What is Maslow’s hierarchy of needs?
From the bottom of the hierarchy upwards, physiological needs include food and clothing, safety (job security), love and belonging needs (friendship), esteem, and self-actualization. Needs lower down the hierarchy must be satisfied before individuals attain higher needs.
Why is understanding Maslow’s hierarchy of needs important?
Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is relevant to organizational motivation because both are concerned with employee action and behavior. Not all employees have the same needs. Therefore, understanding what individual employees need and how these needs differ is an integral part of effective management.
Human Resources policies and techniques used to increase employee motivation.
Once HR professionals understand employee needs, there are several techniques that employers can use to increase employee motivation. Many of these policies and techniques come under the purview of the human resources department. It is necessary to understand that not all your employees are motivated by the same compensation policies or other techniques. Moreover, to achieve the maximum impact, the goal should be to:
- Provide Meaningful and Challenging Work
- Improve Employees’ Lives
- Compensation & Benefits
- Conduct employee performance reviews
Recognize and reward good work
Rewarding and recognizing employees leads to greater employee engagement, which increases retention and helps create a more positive workplace. Furthermore, incorporating rewards and recognition programs helps boost employee motivation, leading to many benefits for the company, such as improved employee relations, increased productivity, and employee satisfaction.
When is the best time to recognize and reward employees?
Give recognition as soon as possible after the good performance takes place. Praise tends to lose its effectiveness with the passing of time. When recognizing an employee’s efforts, be specific. Tell the employee exactly what they did that was good. A mere comment like “nice job” is not enough!
Promote a positive place to work!
What is the work environment?
A work environment is the setting, social features, and physical conditions in which employees perform. The work environment includes a company’s location, facilities, culture, interactions between other employees, team members, and management.
These elements can impact how workers feel about their company, well-being, workplace relationships, collaboration, efficiency, and employee health. Also, the work environment significantly affects employee motivation, job satisfaction, and team morale.
What does a positive work environment look like?
Positive work environments can be defined as those workplaces where there is trust, cooperation, safety, risk-taking support, accountability, and equity. When employees feel comfortable in the work environment, good ideas will be shared appropriately, and credit will be given where it is due. In sum, employee involvement in the company’s success will be genuine. Satisfied employees feel more invested in their tasks.
Motivated employees take the initiative.
Taking the initiative means going above and beyond regular expectations and responsibilities to make things happen. Taking the initiative means seeing something that needs to be done and deciding of your own free will to take action. Motivated employees take the initiative!
What does it mean to take ownership of your work?
Ownership means taking the initiative to bring about positive results for the company. It means not waiting for others to act and caring about the company’s interests as much as the company owner would. Encouraging ownership demonstrates that employees can be trusted to do the right thing. In organizations that have encouraged ownership, employees are motivated, feel involved, and individual effort is increased.
Improve employee motivation through Empowerment
Empowering employees means giving team members and individuals permission to take action and make decisions about their work. It also means there is trust and understanding in place to ensure these actions are in line with company goals. Empowering employees is vital for growing a sustainable business and keeping employees motivated.
Be clear about expectations and goals.
Defining Employee Expectations
Expectations are defined as believing that something will happen or believing that something should be a certain way. An example of expectation is a belief that you will be getting promoted if you perform at a high level. Expectation setting is the process of formulating and communicating employees’ expectations. Setting expectations is an excellent way to motivate employees.
The Benefits of Setting Expectations
Setting expectations with employees has many benefits. For instance, doing so provides clarity for both employee and manager and gets everyone on the same page. In addition, expectations establish a baseline of measurement for future performance.
What is meant by employee expectations?
Employee expectations are things an employee expects of an organization, team, and role. Expectations are the basis for employee satisfaction or dissatisfaction. Generally speaking, when expectations are met, employee satisfaction is enhanced.
Setting employee expectations can eliminate or reduce confusion and increase employees’ chances of successfully achieving the goals set for them. Employees who achieve their goals enhance the success of the entire organization.
Address issues quickly and effectively.
Addressing an issue in the workplace means fixing or solving a problem; it is also an opportunity to enhance employee engagement. To address an issue means to look at a particular case with an objective eye. In a motivated organization, employees, teams, and managers examine a problem and then discuss how to solve it.
What does employee engagement mean?
Employee engagement describes the level of enthusiasm and dedication a worker feels toward their job. Employee engagement can be critical to a company’s success, given its links to employee satisfaction and an individual’s motivation. When employees feel valued, they are engaged and more likely to be productive and higher performing.
How does employee participation increase motivation?
Employees develop a sense of commitment and involvement when they feel listened to and understand where the company is going. Problem-solving involves identifying the problem and different ways of dealing with it. In a highly motivated organization, employees, managers, and teams can choose the best solutions and objectively examine the pros and cons of each.
Employee Performance Reviews or Appraisals.
Appraisals are a form of personalized employee engagement between employees and management. Appraisals can motivate employees because they provide numerous interconnected benefits. Firstly, they demonstrate the need for improvement. If employees don’t clearly understand how they’ve been performing, they can’t be motivated to make any improvements.
Secondly, employee reviews provide business leaders and employees with an opportunity for two-way communication. For example, it allows managers and employees to set individual goals, expectations and recognize employee achievements. The motivational effect comes when employees understand what they are doing right and what needs improvement.
Employee Motivation in Summary
Low employee motivation comes with a high price tag. The Gallup Organization estimates 22 million actively disengaged employees costing the American economy as much as $350 billion dollars per year in lost productivity, including absenteeism, illness, and other problems that result when employees are unhappy at work.
In contrast, having a highly motivated workforce has a range of advantages, such as lower levels of absenteeism, reduced turnover, higher levels of employee commitment, improved relations between management and workers, improved worker performance, happier employees, and enhanced customer service.
The debate between offering incentives and empowering employees is ongoing, but there are benefits to both strategies. By understanding what motivates your workers, you can create an environment where they feel appreciated and challenged. At the same time, it’s important to give employees the freedom to take ownership of their work and make decisions that impact their team or department. Finding a balance between these two approaches will help keep your workforce motivated whatever the economy may bring. So what techniques do you use to motivate your employees?