How to Motivate Staff Members - 3 Simple Tips

Employees who buy in to the mission of your company are much more effective. Here are three workplace tips on how to motivate staff members. These tips will help you get even the lowest level employees engaged in the big picture.

Visualize It For Them

There are many fantastic staff management tips about explaining the "why" of the company's mission, its values, its purpose; however, it's not enough to tell your staff the big picture. You have to teach it, and review it often. Human brains have a lot of information to process, and the business of everyday life can often overwhelm the ability to stay focused on the big picture. So take a page from your school days, and map it. Graph it. Draw it. You might order a simple poster with your mission on it, keyed next to representative images, or perhaps you get a little elaborate and have an artist help you capture it. The human brain responds to images far more powerfully than it does to text. Embrace that biology, and enhance your employees' buy-in. Get creative with this tip and you will surely learn about how to motivate staff members.

Incentivize It For Them

Many managers feels that incentive or rewards programs are juvenile, or insult the maturity of the employees. However, the research data is overwhelming on this point: people respond to incentives. In fact, the data on this is so conclusive that even online universities, with their largely adult student populations, are starting to use badges, small status rewards, and other incentives to enhance retention. The big secret here? You don't have to give away things that have monetary value. From preferences in employee scheduling and shift choices, to favored parking spots, there are many small perks that make people's lives easier, and make their personal preferences seem important to their employer. Sometimes this technique alone can be enough to really learn how to motivate staff members.

Analyze It For Them

There is a lot of debate in business on whether to lead with "stories" or with "numbers". When counseling employees who are having difficulty, or just not performing up to their potential, consider doing both: find the story in their numbers. For instance, in restaurant management, map their service performance over the day, or across days of the week. Show them in macro terms their own performance story. People like to hear about themselves, and data tools today allow managers to access this information. You can even contrast their performance to the average of other staff, or the top band of performers.

If you take the time to invest upfront in some big projects - graphic-based mission statements, fair and fun incentive programs, performance tracking - you will find that motivation and good performance is something you have to maintain, not constantly recreate and reenergize. Learning how to motivate staff members is a crucial part of being an effective manager, and with a little bit of practice it is something that you can master. Do yourself and your bottom line a favor and give these three approaches a try!