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 the intangibles: feeling part of a team and being valued and appreciated consistently outrank money when employees are polled about job satisfaction.
Here are some tips and strategies for retaining and motivating your team:
- Clearly define your vision. Make sure that your vision is shared with your team.
- Give employees what they want and need. Don’t just assume that each and every one of your employees has all the tools, training, and support from their managers they need –check in with them personally and find out.
- Communicate well and often. Training sessions, memos, newsletters, FAQs, and regular meetings can all be used to present your vision to your employees. Make sure to ask questions, and if they are confused, redesign the way the information reaches them.
- Get everyone engaged. Figure out a way to get all of your employees engaged in planning and decision-making. That way the project becomes their ‘baby’.
- Coach for success, and practice random acts of kindness. Feedback is another great motivator. Don’t wait for the periodic reviews; instead, offer feedback as often as possible. Positive feedback should be given right away, to encourage more of the same performance. Negative feedback should also be given a.s.a.p., so that employees have the opportunity to self-correct.
- Act fairly, respect, and create trust. Use your judgment, wisdom, and experience to create a supportive environment. When problems arise, examine the circumstances, understand the context, and only then pass judgment.
- Trust and verify, but also try to make work fun. Good bosses pay attention to the big picture and the details, and care about both the product and the employees.
- Give special attention to high-potential employees. “Even in a tough economy, high-potential employees have other opportunities.” To keep them engaged, consider putting more resources into career development and training. Or perhaps you can give them new projects that will help the company adapt to the changing market, grow, and develop.
- Be creative to avoid downsizing. “An employer that treats its employees as true partners makes every effort to avoid layoffs.” The key is for employees to trust that management is doing everything possible to retain them. Voluntary steps to reduce costs can be employed to avert disaster.
- Implement incentive programs. No matter of what kind of business you are in, you should look into incentive programs. A recent study found that performance could be increased by 22 percent in individuals, and 44% in teams with such programs in place.