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How To Motivate a Team

Written by Joe Hinton on .

A motivated team of workers smiling

The importance of motivation within the workplace is widely appreciated by employers and employees alike; but, understanding how to motivate a team (and keep them motivated) may be a more difficult task for business owners to tackle. Staff who are motivated perform better than those who are not, and engaged employees are 87% less likely to resign from their jobs.

At UKBM, we pride ourselves on being trusted business mentors- but, by the end of this article, our aim is for you to feel like a mentor to your own staff. In a position of authority in the workplace (such as a branch manager), it’s important to understand motivation, and how to create it within those who work with you.

Understanding Motivation

Motivation, in business terms, is one of the most important factors in staff productivity; simply put, a motivated workforce will provide better performance, elevating the positive output of your business, no matter what industry you work in. Motivation affects the general drive and happiness of an individual, but fortunately, as a business owner, team leader, branch manager and so on, there are a whole host of things to try in order to boost motivation levels in your team. Motivation does not just impact feelings within the workplace; a lack of it can have a negative impact on life outside of work, so it’s important to start boosting motivation levels today for a happier and healthier team, in the workplace and at home.

How to Motivate a Team - Key Things to Try

These factors for improving motivation within the workplace are tried and tested; if you notice a collective lack of drive within your business, try out as many of these as you can and monitor the improvement in happiness and productivity. Once you get these factors into your business management routine, there will be no looking back.

  • Communicate - The single most important thing for you to remember in general is that the level of communication you have with staff goes a long way when measuring business performance and success. Communication is key throughout many aspects of life, and business is no different. Regular check-ins with staff to see how they are doing is a strong way of building rapport, providing them with the assurance that they are heard. Communication is integral to ensuring that the other factors within this article also function, so by starting to communicate more, you may find that performances start to rise.
  • Assure Your Team of Their Importance and Purpose - Linking to communication, this is something that may feel small to you but goes a long way for others. There aren’t many better feelings than feeling valued in a workplace, no matter what level you are. Regular dialogue on the importance of their role can help someone feel good, boosting their drive and giving them a clear direction within their role.
  • Team Building and Incentives - Team building opportunities are often used by businesses across all different sizing scales and employment sectors, to a high degree of success. Team building creates a close-knit feeling within a company, boosting morale, teamwork and happiness as well as strengthening communication skills. Incentives also go a long way in boosting mental stimulation, promoting healthy competition and keeping each other motivated to hit targets. One successful example of a monetary incentive is a share of the profits, which helps staff feel connected to the money in which they help to generate. Other examples include Kudos schemes where great work is rewarded in some way; often in the form of vouchers.
  • Progression and Growth - Do your staff know of the opportunities to progress within your company? Knowing you have the opportunity to progress and grow within a company is an attractive prospect to staff as it helps give them a personal goal to aim for, which is highly inspiring. Employee retention is important to the success of a business, so career progression is crucial for keeping staff in your company.
  • Leading by Example - This one is self-explanatory but also important to ensure. Many of the most successful business owners engage with their staff and the wider community regularly- staff becoming familiar with the ones in charge is usually a good thing, and helps to bring everyone closer together. Your positive behaviours as both a figure of authority and a role model will inspire those around you, leading from the front. If you neglect this, motivation levels will drop as a result.
  • Setting Clear Goals and Targets - Are the staff in your workplace all onside with the business vision? By ensuring that employees are up to date with goals and targets, they’ll feel more confident in meeting those aims, boosting the desire to do so. If any staff are unsure of the business’ vision, they’re more likely to feel lost and their drive and delivery will drop. This closely relates to communication, purpose and progression.
  • Celebrate Achievements - Staff want to feel appreciated for their hard work, and in response, they’ll feel motivated to work even harder when you celebrate their successes. Career milestones are always worth celebrating, and ideas such as “colleague of the month” go a long way in encouraging staff to do well within your business. Depending on the scale of your company, there are various ways to celebrate success within your organisation- communicate with your team to see what measures of celebration they’d like to see within their workplace.
  • Creating a Positive Environment - This may seem easier said than done as a raw concept, but there are many small ways in which you can make the working environment more positive. An emphasis on the happiness and safety of your staff needs to be maintained; depending on the environment of your workplace, creating a bright, engaging but safe space can boost positivity within your business. Being flexible with your staff can help create a positive environment, perhaps by offering different working patterns- if you’re willing to be flexible for them, they’ll be flexible for you, boosting their morale. This also shows that you care about their needs, making them feel valued. People enjoy working for a boss who cares about their happiness!

Bringing It All Together

By motivating your staff, the benefits for your company both short and long-term are limitless- if you want to continue to expand the potential of your employees, increasing their desire to succeed is a must. By following the points outlined above, you’ll be on the right track for motivating your employees (and keeping them motivated, too). As a business grows, it’s naturally not as easy to communicate with everyone- but not impossible, and levels of communication need to be strengthened inter-team, to create a strong communication structure. It’s good to get into the habit of keeping your staff inspired using the points above; it’ll become a regular part of a healthy business routine that everyone around you will appreciate. Remember, a motivated team is a happy team, and a happy team is a productive team.

Would You Like More Advice on How to Achieve the Maximum Potential From Your Staff?

Our local business mentors are dedicated to helping you achieve your goals and targets. We specifically choose the right mentors for you, in order to give your business the best chance of success. If you’d like more help on inspiring your team, or any other business-related advice, please get in touch.

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