How do you best motivate your team?
I'm interested in learning how other community members motivate their teams. I've spoken to entrepreneurs and small business owners who use a wide variety of tactics to keep their employees engaged. What works for you? Do you find more success offering company perks like increased vacation, flexible schedules, etc. or do you see better results when empowering employees through their work?
As a general rule, money is not a long term motivator and can have the opposite effect as people will tend to feel shortchanged and taken advantage of when the additional money stops.
This is a big general statement, but, people who excel in specific positions are wired for the respective position. When you have the right person in the right position, no external motivation is necessary – these are the small group of people who absolutely love what they do and lose themselves in their work.
Most companies start with a bad job description, they tend to be convoluted and confusing. I see things like this all the time – an example might be; Looking for a multi-tasker in a fast-paced environment who is attentive to details. There is no human being that can handle both tasks effectively, so the “person” will disappoint as they try as hard as possible to achieve your wishes – they will inevitably fail. They will also emotionally exhaust themselves trying to do both things at a high level. A well thought out, and articulated job description is crucial to the success of the person.
After the job description is fully developed, a recruiting strategy must be laid out, and behavioral interviewing must begin. This could be a long and arduous process, but the effort is well worth your time and energy.
Overwhelmingly, it’s the wrong person is in the position and the wrong expectations are set in place. Work on both of those, and you will have an exponential change within your company.
BTW – once you have the right people in place and the proper descriptions, you will want to pay them very generously and provide every perk you can think of – the top performers are worth their weight in gold and can take you from okay to phenomenal.
I believe, the best thing to keep a team motivated, besides all the monetary stuff, includes a couple of important factors among all others.
1. Communication: This plays a vital role in not just keeping a team motivated but also paves the way to work friction-less. Listening to the ideas, concerns and any strifes/conflicts help in keeping them active and productive. Talking to the team about smallest of achievements, general issues and even sharing a laugh, ensures them that you are not just a guy above their pay-grade; it means that you count them as important for the team as anyone could be.
2. Trust: This applies to many factors involved in a daily routine. Trust your team with creativity, responsibility, and ownership. This doesn't mean that you let things be. No, you should keep checks and balances. But the important thing is that you trust each member with their job. You give them enough liberty to devise a calculated strategy and decide which one to take forward. Be a guiding mentor but don't outright deny them. This also pushes the team away from the lead and eventually encourages them to rebel in any possible way they could.
You need to adapt and introduce a culture in your company which encourages open door policy, creativity, and emphasizes learning and development of your employees. To be honest, I have seen people dedicating their 100% efforts to the organizations hosting such values. Even in my organization, these values and such a culture has groomed highly dedicated employees.
Why I don't want to elaborate on the monetary factor? Because monetary benefits don't create loyalty, as the employee is only loyal to money being paid. If someone else will pay them higher, they will switch. I have personally witnessed this with my employees where those who didn't fit in the culture and were benefited through monetary gains, left anyway for higher pay somewhere else.
So, in my opinion, a well-defined culture not only keeps the employees motivated but also helps in making them loyal.
Generating a passion in their mind is the only method to motivate a team. Even though corporate Gurus say that monetary benefits will be quite motivating, there are some limitations for it. However if unending affinity towards a particular profession is cultivated inside the employee's mind, that will be the best motivation available.
For me, it works best when I increase bonuses but not per person.
Maybe this has some psychic mindset but when I increase bonus lets say for example $300. The bonus doesn't go to just one person but it's divided by the whole team.
These things work, even though when I was recommended I was very skeptical about it.
Hope this helped you a lot.
Blazho from Exai