As the owner of a business, it’s critical that your staff are all working productively and giving their all. This will result in a more prosperous company as more work gets done per day, and to a high standard as well. In an ideal world, you’ll never have to worry about employees perhaps becoming a bit complacent and lacking any motivation to work hard. However, this tends to happen a lot to employees all over the world. It’s natural for your staff to have a dip in motivation and not work to their full capacity from time to time. What’s vital is that you figure out ways to incentivise them, and make them work smarter and harder.
The obvious way to do this is with a pay rise. Give someone more money, and they’re likely to have an incentive to work harder. But, this costs a lot of money for your business, and it’s only a temporary solution at best. Many people are not overly motivated by additional money once they have enough to cover the mortgage and the necessities of life. In a lot of cases, there are many other things that are not financially based that will influence not only their standard of work but also their quality of life. So, here are ten different ways you can incentivise your staff without giving them a pay rise:
Praise Them When They Do Good Work
The easiest way to give your employees a big hit of motivation is to keep telling them that they’re doing a great job. A little bit of praise goes a long way to bringing them out of a slump and ensuring they’re working to their full potential. All you have to do is mention the excellent work they’ve done during a regular email to your staff or a weekly meeting. The key is to praise individual employees with other members of staff being aware of it. The ones you praise will get a confidence boost, and the ones you don’t will have an incentive to try harder so they will be mentioned next week. When you do praise, make sure that you are doing it where praise is due as if you start giving out praise randomly you will likely do more harm than good.
Offer Flexible Hours
A lot of people lack the motivation to go to work as they see it as a burden on their life. It disrupts their family commitments and makes things harder for them. Consequently, if you offer flexible working hours, then your staff will be pleased. People can work with more flexibility and won’t be bogged down by a strict schedule. As a result, their performance improves, and they continue working well.
An effortless way to incentivise your staff is through a weekly/monthly rewards system. Set targets for your team every week/month with the promise of free food or some free drinks f they’re met. You give them a goal to work towards with something coming their way if they achieve it. In essence, you create the perfect conditions for motivated employees.
Employee Of The Month Regime
Similarly, you can go down the ‘employee of the month’ route to add some friendly competition to your team. Each month, you stick an employee's name and picture on the main noticeboard with some information on why they’re the most valued member of staff for that month. People have an incentive to work harder, so they get recognised on the wall next month. Everyone will want to be employee of the month the most, so your team becomes far more productive and hard working.
A Free Day Off
This is a genius idea as everyone loves having a day off work. Essentially, you offer a free day off to employees if they meet specific targets you set them. This doesn’t come out of their holiday allowance, and they get paid for it as well. People will be so keen to earn this free day off that their performance levels go through the roof! Just make sure you organise things so members of staff with free days off don’t all take them at the same time, leaving you with an empty office.
Another way you can try and motivate your employees into working harder is with a new equipment incentive. If everyone complains about the computers or chairs/desks in the office, then strike up a deal with your team. Tell them that you’ll go out and buy new versions of the things they dislike the most, but only if they reach specific goals or targets. The timeframe you give them for this is entirely up to you, but it’s a great idea. The additional benefit is that your employees will be happier at work afterwards as they have better equipment and will continue to work harder than before.
Create A Work Family
It’s human nature to be more motivated to do things when you’re doing them for people you care about. This is why many small business owners have issues with their staff; there’s not a great relationship in the office. If the whole team is very distant with one another and only talks to each other at work, then there’s not going to be a great deal of motivation buzzing around the place. To counter this, you should try and create a real family feeling at work. Make everyone feel at home, encourage your staff to talk to one another, so you build a community feeling. There’s more of an incentive to work hard when you feel like you’re doing it for your ‘family’ or people you actually care about.
Offer Free Gym Passes
You could also think outside the box and consider elements of your staff’s lives that you can help improve. Their health will be a big one, so offering free gym passes is a genius idea. It incentives them in the sense that they have a real reason to continue working for you and not jumping ship to a rival business. Plus, if they have access to a local gym, then they can improve their health & wellbeing which has a positive impact on their work performance as well.
Annual Rewards Nights
This next idea is brilliant as it ensures your employees are encouraged to work to their full potential throughout the year. The concept of a rewards night is simple; everyone dressed up nice and fancy, you rent out a special place to host the event, and you give out trophies to the best performing members of staff. Everyone will want to get their hands on a coveted trophy, and you can include ones like ‘most improved employee’, ‘employee of the year’, and ‘most dedicated staff member’. Aside from providing an incentive to work as best as they can all year round, it’s also a chance to get together as a business and have a lovely evening as a family. This helps strengthen your bond, which ties into the point about creating a family atmosphere in the office.
A lot of small business owners will work with other companies to strike up partnerships that benefit both parties. As a result, you may be able to work out deals where your business gets discounts on products/services from the other small businesses you work with. Then, you can offer these discounts to your employees as an incentive to keep working hard for you. They’ll be more inclined to stay in their current job if they have the perk of getting money off at different shops or businesses.
As you can see, giving your employees a pay rise isn’t the only way to incentivise them. All of these options are far more affordable for your business, and more effective as well. A pay rise may work for a short while until the buzz wears off and your staff are back to where they were before. Improve your business and see a much more productive company by using some of the ideas in this article to motivate your team!