As the financial markets take another dive, the focus is once again on how to make sure your business is working as smartly and as efficiently as possible. Motivation could be the key.
This is the first of two blogs where we look at how motivation must start from the top, and the impact this has on your employees …
For your company to achieve sustainable growth, workplace engagement is essential. However, according to Gallup, only 13% of employers worldwide are engaged at work. Only one in eight workers are psychologically committed to their jobs and are likely to make positive contributions to their organisations. Now, here in Australia and New Zealand, we are doing ok. We have the second-highest proportion of engaged workers globally at 24%. Yet that still leaves three-quarters of our workforce who are not engaged or worse still, actively disengaged.
This is really going to affect your business potential in 2021.
In a global survey, Australia and New Zealand have the second-highest proportion of engaged workers.
But it's still only 24%
To be fair, your team might be great, way above the national average. Yet it's been proven that you will still be missing out on the vibrant productivity that stems from an engaged member of staff, and consequently miss out on the chance to increase profits and experience business growth.
Imagine what you could achieve by the end of the year if every one of your employees is focused on contribution, producing their best work for your company?
As the Christmas and the long summer holidays are put on the shelf for another year, you slip back into your work routine so quickly it’s as if the summer never happened. Now is a great time to rediscover what motivates you. This will then set the tone for the kind of behaviour and performance you expect from your team. It is often said that organisations are only as good as the people who work for them. Returning to the workplace is inevitable, and everyone coming back has had a chance to recharge and reset. Now is the time to capitalise on that energy, that clean slate, and make your team great from the word go.
But how do you generate the oh-so-elusive golden business tool of motivation? Gallup has told us that the vast percentage of companies globally are failing to engage their employees, so how can you succeed where so many others are failing?
You will have probably heard it all before, and as a leader, it is so easy to blame the staff. Yet a great leader will take on all the responsibility for his or her team’s failings. Not many people get up in the morning and come to work with the intention of causing problems. How many people really want to go home at the end of the day feeling as if they have failed? Therefore lack of engagement, more often than not, stems from structural and managerial inadequacies. All the fault should not be pinned on the staff.
Every person is motivated by something, the trick to business success is to generate an environment where that motivation is encouraged, flourishes, and becomes contagious.
Why do you get up in the morning? What passion fuels you to start the day? How is this reflected in your work?
Motivation starts at the top with trust and validity
- Imagine you are an employee working nine to five, Monday to Friday. You have an employer who actively displays a passion for the business, loves the mission and the vision, has realistic goals and a plan to get there, puts in the work yet maintains a balance, and seems to genuinely enjoy what he does. This is infectious, wouldn’t we all like to be that employer! You and your colleagues will be swept along with this motivation, and see validity in what is being asked of you. There will be trust in your employer to deliver and you will want to be a part of it. Trust and validity are solid foundations for engagement from employees.
- Why not use the New Year to recover your motivation and watch what effect it has on your staff. Motivation and performance, regardless of position, result from how we make meaning and perceive the world around us. Evaluate your mind-set, it may need a revamp. 2021 is not the year to reside in our comfort zones. If we do then we can expect very little growth.
- David L Hancock’s book, Performance Driven Thinking, is all about how the mind drives performance. If you are struggling for motivation, try thinking differently. Approach work from a new angle, explore a new market, diversify projects, and make things happen - don’t wait for that ship to come in, swim out to it instead.
- Use others to help you rekindle motivation. You might be the boss, the business owner, the top guy, however, you don’t need to be isolated. Talk to those people who are open and honest, a mentor or a colleague or maybe a family member, and they will recommend ways to improve and advise on directions to take. Don’t let the ‘I can look after myself’ frame of mind keep you from the company of others who can help.
At the end of the day, you just need to consider what message you emitting through your actions and emotions. Put yourself in your employees’ shoes, how would you respond to a boss like you? Would you be encouraged and inspired or disheartened and fed up?
Come to work every day with a renewed focus and energy to motivate your staff.
In our next article we will ask you to look at your work systems. If employee engagement is lacking, more often than not it is the work systems that are at fault, not the individuals. We will leave you questioning whether you need to change yours and giving some advice about the best way to do so to motivate your staff…
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