Management figures in all industries face a constant challenge to motivate employees. The reality of the working world is that not all employee tasks will immediately inspire enthusiasm. A management figure who can extract high performance levels from their team is worth their weight in gold. If you take these four tips on board, you’ll be able to make a difference to your team’s productivity through better man-management.

  1. Individual

One of the most important, yet frequently forgotten, aspects of motivational management is remembering that each employee is unique and the challenges they face may require individual responses. What works to inspire one person may completely demotivate another, so take the time to get to know your employees. Pay close attention to how each member of your team responds in different situations. Don’t wait for a problem to arise before trying to figure out the best response but, instead, take every opportunity to learn about your workers so you know how to react when needed.

It’s important to ensure that taking an individual approach to management isn’t perceived as favouritism or preferential treatment. Set clear boundaries and identify key areas in which your response will be uniform for each employee. For instance, in disciplinary matters, it can be harmful to group morale if everyone isn’t treated equally.

  1. Team

A healthy team dynamic is one of the most efficient ways to improve productivity. Focus on creating an atmosphere that is welcoming yet competitive. When employing new staff, how you think they’ll fit in with the rest of the group should be one of your major considerations. If your employees get on well with each other and feel valued as team members, half the motivational battle is already won.

Team dynamic can often be greatly enhanced by gamifying certain tasks. Create fun and achievable goals, and give small rewards and prizes for the winning team members. If you notice an individual employee isn’t engaged with the rest of the group, take the time to try to figure out why and consider ways to help them settle in. Something as simple as a change in seating plan can significantly alter team dynamic.

  1. Adapt

Once you’ve figured out what works to motivate individuals and groups, it’ll be time to start the entire process again. People change; what may have been an effective motivational tool before may not always continue to have the desired result. Pay attention to changing moods or trends and try to spot any issues before they can develop.

There are many variables that can impact a person’s mindset so it’s important to be attentive and listen to your staff. Assuming that a tried and tested method will continue to work could see a manager sleepwalking into an irrevocably disconnected relationship with their employees so stay alert and open to new ideas.

  1. Demonstrate

The best managers lead by example. If you set a rule, adhere to it yourself. Embody the business practices and work ethic you demand from your staff at all times in your own work. A manager that flouts their own rules or doesn’t live up to the standards of professionalism expected from their employees will quickly breed a culture of resentment throughout the workplace.

It is better to be perceived as professional than fun, so be the party-pooper and put an end to any shenanigans you see if it is distracting from work. If you criticise others for not working hard enough it will be considered hypocritical if you haven’t demonstrated an exemplary work ethic yourself.

One more thing – Improve!

Managing and motivating employees isn’t an exact science and you can never stop educating yourself. Read as much as you can about new techniques or methods and adapt your own approach whenever necessary. Constant self-improvement often separates the very best managers from the rest so your quest to learn more should never end.

There is an infinite number of ways to motivate an employee and an equal number of ways to demotivate them. Read as widely as you can and absorb every source of information available to you. As you gain more experience, it will become easier and you’ll start to notice trends but you will never fail to be surprised by the complexity of the task facing you.

A fully motivated workforce will provide almost instantaneous returns on your time and efforts. Efficiency will improve and the atmosphere in the workplace will generally become more pleasant and conducive to productivity. Arguably, learning how to motivate your employees may be the most profitable business decision you ever make.

Better business decisions mean better business. At Four Business Solutions we can help you keep growing your business. To find out more about our services, simply give us a call on 0800 6250 025.