The last year has been hard on everyone. Some people have been furloughed whilst others have remained working as they normally would. For those who have stayed at work, they’ve likely either seen an increase in the amount of the work they’ve had to undertake, or they’ve been forced to work from home for an extended period of time. In comparison, those who have been furloughed have more than likely felt isolated and without purpose, even though that’s not true.
Now the world is starting to open back up and people are returning to work, you might find that your team are slightly lacking in motivation. This is completely normal and is likely something that you’ll find yourself having to cope with for the foreseeable future. As a team leader or a manager, it’s your job to ensure your team are motivated and performing at their best, but at the moment, that might be harder said than done.
If you’re struggling with ways to motivate your team after the pandemic, here are some tips.
One of the oldest and most tried and tested methods of motivating teams is to offer incentives. Providing commission is a well-used tactic of leading a sales team to success, but in other roles, you could offer prizes for well-performing employees. An example might be buying an experience day as a prize, and at the end of the month, the employee who has gone above and beyond and really gave their all might win the prize.
Studies have shown that offering rewards and prize incentives can drive productivity, boost output and increase motivation, so this is a good place to start if you don’t already have a program in place.
Whilst physical prizes can provide a much-appreciated impact on motivation and morale, nothing compares to the effect of positive praise. Too often, employers fail to provide feedback when their employees have done something worthy of praise and instead tend to hold performance reviews when something not so good has occurred. There is a well-established view that employees are not children and do not need constant praise, and whilst this is true, it’s a fact that employees are more engaged, motivated and perform better when they receive positive feedback on their work.
It makes them feel more appreciated and determined to do a better job. From an employer’s perspective, providing feedback is free so is well worth incorporating if you don’t already. A good way to introduce praise is to hold weekly meetings with your team and call out something good each employee has done.
3. Team Building
When you work as part of a team, it’s essential that every member gets along with each other. The last thing you want is performance to be impacted by arguing employees who do not get along. Whilst it’s inevitable that your team will be comprised of multiple different personalities, when hiring new members, you should factor in whether they’ll fit in with your existing team. After this, it’s a good idea to engage in bonding activities outside of work.
In the office, things can get heated and frustrations may be aired as a result of tight deadlines. This doesn’t mean that your team don’t get along, but more that they could do with a chance to socialize outside the working environment. Whether you choose to go on a team night out or a fun activity day to the beach, team building is key to boosting morale and increasing motivation at work.
Employee benefits are often confused with rewards, but the two are in fact different things. Employee benefits relates to offering a good package to your employees when they join your team. Comprehensive healthcare, generous holiday, flexible working hours and competitive pay are the foundations of a good benefits program. By offering these things, your team are likely to feel more appreciated and respected and will want to perform better. Compare this to employees who work full time for minimum benefits and low pay, it’s obvious which team will be more motivated.
Will you be trying any of these motivation tips with your team? Do you have your own tips that other’s might useful?