Blog Post

    How to motivate employees: 6 secrets to success

    Now more than ever, with so many of us working from home, HR departments need to be mindful of how easy it is to lose motivation without good social & structural support - these 6 secrets to success will help you tackle the challenge head-on.

    Motivation is intrinsically linked to engagement - if you are engaged in your work, you’re more likely to be motivated to do it well. So if you want to boost employee motivation you need to focus on positive engagement throughout the entire employee lifecycle.

    Our 6 secrets to success outline the most effective ways to boost engagement and motivation in your workplace and galvanize your employees to be bigger, better, and more productive than ever!

    Arrow-T-Purple 1. Practice transparent recruitment

    The recruitment phase of the employee journey is often a land of big promises. You’re told wonderful stories of commitment to internal mobility, regular pay & performance reviews, and of course flexible working arrangements.

    But nothing is a bigger motivation killer than finding out shortly after your arrival that your expectations don’t match reality.

    So be mindful of what you offer to candidates during your recruitment. Be transparent and ensure that you can walk the walk and back your promises up. Better to undersell and overdeliver than to leave your newest recruit feeling like they’ve had the wool pulled over their eyes!

    Arrow-T-Purple 2. Start preboarding

    If you’re not preboarding, it’s time to jump on the bandwagon.

    Preboarding, known as the ‘digital bridge’ between recruitment and employment, is a crucial part of the new hire journey and is the ideal place to prime your new employee for a strong start.

    You can use the preboarding phase to drip-feed admin & documentation, company information, and even pre-start training. Your newest hire is much more likely to be motivated to get to work if they already feel that they have a good understanding of how to do their job well.

    On top of this, motivation is closely tied to the feeling that you are valued by an organization. Good preboarding communicates that you are thinking about a new hire beyond the job offer and removes the disconnect between accepting a job and landing on day 1.

    Arrow-T-Purple 3. Onboard with experience as the driver

    Did you know that good onboarding is proven to boost employee engagement by up to 33%? And when we say good, we mean onboarding programs that focus on the onboardee experience - marrying process, culture, and connection for a seamless start.

    Onboarding is a crucial part of a new hire's development and can make (or break) the next phase of their employment. A good onboarding process will set expectations for your newest addition and outline the ‘why’ behind the work.

    That ‘why’ is a cornerstone of employee motivation. To feel that there is purpose behind your work is a powerful thing - and it can be as simple as knowing that there are people who rely on the work you do.


    There a million and one different ways to measure your onboarding, we’ve compiled 12 of them in this handy infographic to get you started.


    Arrow-T-Purple 4. Reward responsibility

    Organizations large and small often rely on individual employees taking initiative to ensure that processes grow and develop over time. They expect team members to see where improvements could be made and take charge to enact the necessary changes.

    This is a fantastic strategy as it empowers your teams to utilize their problem-solving skills.

    It is important however that people be appropriately rewarded for their efforts. Often, these small improvements go unnoticed or simply unrecognized, and it can be incredibly demotivating for the team members involved to feel they are not being appreciated.

    Actively rewarding employees who take on additional responsibility or work to solve problems of their own volition will help create role models and make it much more likely that others will follow their lead.

    Sometimes a simple thank you note can be the difference!

    Arrow-T-Purple 5. Encourage creativity

    Flexing your creative muscles in an important part of any job.

    Everyone experiences creativity in one way or another, whether it’s transforming an old PowerPoint presentation into a work of art, or reformatting the payroll spreadsheets to be more intuitive and easy to use.

    Creativity is a big driver of motivation - so try and cultivate a company culture that encourages staff to be creative, no matter their role.

    Icon1 3 ways to foster workplace creativity:
    Build creativity profiles

    Have managers create a short ‘creativity profile’ for each of their team members. When an in-house project comes up that requires some specialist creative tools, refer to these lists to fill the gaps.

    Hold open suggestion sessions

    Once a week (or month) hold short team meetings where employees can anonymously suggest ideas they have for their department. Set a timer, open up the floor, and discuss each one for 10 minutes or so, to get everyone's creative juices flowing.

    Encourage collaboration

    Run a series of speed-dating style sessions between managers to see if there are any areas where they could collaborate better. If they find a suitable project, bring the two teams together for a creative brainstorming session.

    Arrow-T-Purple 6. Stop counting hours, start counting output

    Having your staffer at their desk for 8 hours a day, 5 days a week doesn’t guarantee they’re going to do any work - and it won’t necessarily motivate them either. So why are we measuring employee hours and not their work output?

    A recent study on flexible working suggests that more than 68% of people would like to have a more flexible working arrangement - and for many, that means judging them on their output, and not how long they were ‘in the chair’.

    Now, we know what you’re thinking: “We can’t just have people work whenever they want”, and, for the most part, you’re right. But that’s not to say there can’t be a balance. If you emphasize quality output, you can create an unspoken culture of give-and-take where employees know that so long as their work remains solid, they can have a little flexibility in the way they want to balance their personal and professional lives.

    Not only that but motivation will be through the roof as your employees will feel that their work is valuable and that you trust them.

    The takeaway?

    Motivated employees stick around longer, produce better work, and are better ambassadors for your organization.

    But it takes work. And that work starts from the moment your newest team member applies to join your team.

    So get started now, and reap tomorrow's rewards!

    Want to know how Talmundo’s clients boost engagement and create a culture that motivates their employees?

    Check out our case studies from some of the biggest names in global business.

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    Topics: Featured , HR
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