Entrepreneurs who have been in business for many years understand that employees are critical to the company’s growth and profitability. Employees who are motivated and engaged come to work every day ready to apply themselves wholeheartedly to their daily tasks and have a clear understanding that their work matters. This feeling of engagement translates into excellence on a daily basis. If you want to keep your employees motivated for the long term, consider implementing these five critical strategies for employee engagement.
– Communicate Company Goals
Good communication is vital for allowing individuals to do their best work. Nowhere is this ability to communicate more important than providing a vision of where the company is going and the employees’ place in making that vision a reality.
You can use periodic meetings, not only to provide factual information but also to create a “big picture” that will inspire and motivate workers to put forth their best efforts. This measure can often produce measurable increases in productivity. Business conferences such as EntreCon often include useful information about effective communications that can help you connect with your employees.
– Empower Employees to Make Decisions
Business studies show that employees really excel in their positions when they are given the authority to make decisions for day-to-day needs. When workers know their idea has a real impact on the operations of the business, they are more likely to stay informed, ask more questions regarding activities and use their time more effectively. If necessary, you can provide preliminary mentoring for employees to help them learn good decision-making techniques. These efforts will increase job satisfaction and improve the skills of your employees.
– Offer Incentives for Good Performance
Rewards have always been an effective psychological tool to motivate people to do their best. These rewards do not have to be expensive or lavish, as long as they are something employees value and which provides some status when they acquire it.
These rewards can be gift certificates to local restaurants, theater tickets, tickets for the family to a local amusement park, movie passes or other entertainments. Even small rewards such as those for coffee, donuts or other treats will be appreciated. The important part is to recognize a job well done and to allow other employees to know they will also be rewarded for their good work.
– Promote from within
Nothing is more discouraging to a workforce than to have people hired from the outside to do tasks they know they can, and have done, well themselves. Whenever possible, provide opportunities for promotion within your company. This measure not only increases company loyalty. It also improves the workplace atmosphere and incentivizes productivity at all levels.
– Recognize Achievements
Make sure you recognize employees for the extra effort they have engaged in for special projects, getting projects in ahead of schedule and for managing costs and schedules. Vocally giving credit where credit is due is one of the most effective ways you can provide feedback not only to named employee but also to the group. These actions will increase the prestige of the employee, as well as provide a psychological incentive to others in the group because everyone desires recognition for their effort and status within their work team.
Your employees can be instrumental in helping you achieve both short and long-term goals. If you take the time to interact with them in positive ways, you will see an improvement in morale, as well as increases in employee engagement. Take a page from entrepreneurs who make a habit of ensuring their employees have reasons to do their best work when they arrive at the company doors. You will find that these strategies can help you grow your company and improve your balance sheet.