To motivate means to provide someone with the motive to act in a certain way. When it comes to job satisfaction, financial rewards may be lower on the list than most people think. Being happy with your job seems to depend more on intangible things like, feeling part of a team and being valued and appreciated. This consistently outrank money when employees are polled about job satisfaction. As an employer of labour, you will agree that a motivated employee is a valuable employee, and also among the toughest to find.

With the present state of the economy, we all see companies reducing their workforces, employees need to work at optimal levels to ensure increased productivity and profitability. What most employers fail to see is that it also has adverse effect on the performance of its employees. For example, an employee that is still on the job, but sees his/her colleagues being let go will find it difficult to perform to the optimal level. This is due to the fear of being let go as well. Essentially, now more than ever, organizations must be proactive and have the right strategies in place to keep employees motivated.

These are some strategies that have proven to be very effective;

Communicate: As an employer of labour, you don’t want to be a dictator else you will phase out; it’s really just that simple, your old employees will leave, and new ones will not stay. Perhaps the most important part of a good manager’s job is effective communication. Creating a culture of communication in which managers and employees share common goals and work together to meet them can boost a company up and even save it from the gutter.

  • Involve your employees on the present and future vision of the organization
  • How the company plans to reach this new strategic direction
  • How the organization will redefine itself to sustain revenues during the downturn
  • The rationale behind any restructuring
  • How each employee’s roles and responsibilities add to the organization’s success

Employees appreciate being “in the know” and will contribute to the improvements and future success of the organization. Once they understand the reasons behind decisions, fears are alleviated, and their energy is channeled into helping the organization reach its goals.

Listening: This goes beyond just hearing what they are saying. It involves listening actively to what the employee/team is trying to pass across. Employees want to see their organization succeed. Working on the front lines, they have first-hand knowledge of what works and what doesn’t. Many have excellent ideas, ranging from money saving to operational improvements and streamlining processes. As a manager, it is your duty to make time to ask and listen to suggestions; not only to make employees feel valued but for the sake of your business. Asking questions can help develop critical innovative thinking and a call to action across the firm.

Benefits: Offer fantastic benefits, you can’t underestimate how important benefits are to employees’ contentment and retention, whether it’s health insurance, pension or a great vacation policy. That is why some companies where finding and retaining genius talent is a big deal go overboard giving employees all those things and much more.

You must understand and remember that generosity begets loyalty, which gets people wanting to earn their keep, and don’t forget about training on the job, especially in ICT related firms. If you want your staff to be on top of their games and if you invest in them, they will know you care about their well-being; then they’re going to keep their investment with you. They will feel valued as a person and in return will be less likely to go someplace else.

Pay Attention: Give special attention to high-potential employees. You must understand that “Even in a tough economy, high-potential employees have other opportunities,” according to Douglas Klein, president of Sirota Survey Intelligence.  A study they conducted showed that during an economic crisis, employees who are anxious about their future can negatively affect a company. The reason is simple and obvious: they are less engaged in their jobs, and they may be making plans to leave. (according to

Conclusively, a good job is hard to find, but every entrepreneur knows a good employee is even harder to keep. As an entrepreneur, one must ensure his or her company is staffed with people who look forward to coming to work every day for more than a paycheck.

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