Employee motivation is essentially defined as the level of energy and creativity that an employee is willing to commit to their work. Motivation must be a management concern for all types and sizes of businesses whether the economy is growing or shrinking. This is because motivation is the fuel for any organization run by humans. In fact, chronic low motivation can lead to organizational complacency, disinterest and opposition. Such a mindset can eventually amass into absenteeism, high turnover and brain drain. This is why leaders must be aware of organizational vibrations and take corrective measures when the collective energy is low.
In fact, high energy and motivation are the key ingredients of running a sovereign and self-governing organization. A high performing and motivated workforce frees attention from day-to-day chores and allows strategic thinking for longer-term organizational growth and development. The thing is, that healthy mindset people thrive in creative work environments and want to make a difference. So how do we accomplish such an environment you may ask? Well, the primary question is this – are you – as a founder or a business leader – willing to empower and delegate? And if not, why?
The above question is a must for any organization wishing to be relevant, grow or thrive. Many business owners refuse to empower others out of fear of losing control and/or other personal insecurities. No company can be led this way, and no company can expect to go far with such a mindset. In fact, the organization will remain attached to the founder or senior management forever. So it’s very important to understand our own motives and limitations before trying to encourage or manage others. Once we define our own motives then the action plan is quite simple. Here is what to keep in mind if you are truly motivated to have a high energy company:
- Job Descriptions: research suggests that motivation has much more to do with the design of the job itself rather than with the reward.
- Empowerment: decision-making authority increases their realm of control over work for which people are held responsible and better equips them to do it right.
- Openness: efficient change and work optimization must be driven both downwards and upwards – otherwise, people limit their creativity, innovation and feedback.
- Learning: we can motivate people to achieve more by pledging to perpetual enhancement of skills through accreditation and licensing programs.
- Quality: we spend most of our lives in working environments, therefore, the quality of life within those premises must be very high for people to want to come to work.
- Money: money still occupies a major place in the mix of motivators across all functions and positions – profit sharing is the next level in this calculation.
Employee motivation research and theory remains relatively unaffected from the original findings over 70 years ago. Whether we call it empowerment or teamwork is irrelevant. The facts are simple! We need to create an environment that rewards employee motivation rather than punish it. When people directly see the results of their contributions and they are emotionally rewarded about them, they feel motivated to do it again. Ideally, the work result itself – as per hiring practises – provides a feeling of accomplishment. However, well-structured reward and recognition practices are able to take companies to the next level. Tangible and emotional rewards equal retention of high quality employees that in turn increases company creativity, innovation, and growth.