Employee motivation is a must for a team to perform at its best. The “Great Resignation” or the “Quiet Quitting” are nothing more than symptoms of the great disappointment felt by employees in those companies where they are not valued.
What we talk about when we talk about Employee Motivation
Employee motivation plays a very important role in business development: it’s what drives the actions and decisions of team members toward the achievement of the objectives set by the Top Management.
Without that motivation, employees stop being enthusiastic about what they do, their morale drops, and they begin to pay less attention to their tasks, which causes a decrease in the quality of services.
Lack of motivation can even trigger the absenteeism rate, increase turnover, generate Burnout Syndrome and, in the worst case, lead employees to suffer from depression.
Types of motivation
There are different types of motivation that influence the behavior and performance of workers. Among them we distinguish two main types, and these ones contain more types of motivators.
Extrinsic Employee Motivation
This type deals with the motivation that is stimulated from outside, through the prizes and incentives that are used to encourage a person to carry out an action. For example: salary, promotions, bonuses, approval or external recognition.
This category also includes:
- Social Motivation. Social motivators are related to everything that has to do with relationships and interactions with other people: desire for acceptance, respect, recognition…
- Environmental motivation. This type of motivation is related to the physical environment in which team members work, and includes access to resources and tools, a comfortable and supportive space, and positive and healthy relationships with co-workers.
Intrinsic Employee Motivation
On the contrary, intrinsic motivation is the one that comes from ourselves and is related to our desires and passions. Among this type of motivation we have the desire to reach expertise in some area, personal growth or the desire to contribute to a greater cause.
In this category we include:
- Self-determination. This type of motivation is related to the sense of autonomy and control. This includes motivators such as self-management of tasks or the ability to make decisions and carry them out.
- Personal motivation. That which refers to the values, interests and goals of each individual. We are talking about the desire for fulfillment and personal achievement.
There is no motivation without a good leader
It must be taken into account that each person is different and the motivators between individuals vary depending on their interests. That is why, as a leader, it is very important to know the members of the team.
Identifying what moves employees to act and perform at their best is what enables strong managers to lead teams effectively, knowing what to do and what to say to foster motivation every time.
8 effective ways to boost the motivation of your work team
Although it is true that each person has their own motivations, as team managers we must know what to do (and what not to do) to create a stimulating work environment where employees can perform with high morale.
And, despite popular beliefs, the most effective ways have nothing to do with money. In fact, several studies have shown that a salary increase or extra payments not only do not help to increase motivation, but rather decrease it .
For this reason, here are 10 strategies to motivate employees in the long term and in a sustainable way, focusing on intrinsic motivation:
- Set clear goals and expectations. Employees are more motivated when they know exactly what is expected of them and how their work contributes to the growth of the business.
- Offer opportunities for growth and development. Employee motivation increases when employees feel that they are learning and growing professionally. In this sense, continuous training is a plus for motivation: workshops, conferences, courses, educational programs… You can even encourage the members of your team to face new challenges and responsibilities that take them out of their comfort zone and raise their careers to the next level.
- Recognize a job well done. Show appreciation for the value employees bring and the results that come from their good work. On most occasions, being invisible and feeling underappreciated is what causes the team to become demotivated. So make sure you show your employees appreciation and gratitude on a regular basis.
- Create a positive work climate. The work environment has a great impact on the morale of workers. For this reason, it’s important that you encourage open and transparent communication, teamwork, inclusion, support and respect among colleagues.
- Provide the right resources. Make sure team members have the necessary tools to perform their tasks effectively. If they find that they cannot carry out their work, they are more likely to quickly become demotivated.
- Promote work-life balance. Help employees achieve a healthy work-life balance by offering flexible hours, breaks, and encouraging them to use vacation time to reset and get full energy.
- Encourage open communication. Honest and transparent communication makes the workforce feel informed and included in the decision processes made by management. A communication that should be two-way, so encourage your team to share their ideas, thoughts and opinions about the company. And if you use a specialized employee feedback tool, even better!
- Foster the feeling of belonging. Employees feel more motivated if they perceive that they are valued and are part of a team with common goals. The feeling of belonging has a great influence on morale, since it turns work goals into personal goals.
Fostering employee motivation is related to paying attention to employees’ desires. Strategies must be focused on people and their well-being, creating a supportive environment where team members feel valued, recognized and empowered to succeed.
If you want to know what exactly motivates your team, you can use Team Insights – A tool designed to give workers a voice and help the best leaders build defined, strong and satisfying teams.