Posts tagged ‘Motivation’

Motivating in a pay freeze

Over the past ten years thousands of organisations in both the public and private sectors have imposed pay freezes on their staff. The aim is to improve bottom line results by capping fixed costs. The negative side of a pay freeze is that employee motivation can take a nose dive and the organisation can end up losing valuable employees, so the question is….how can you motivate your team in a pay freeze?

The first thing to do is find out the reason for the pay freeze and the length of time you can expect it to be in force. Take the time to explain the purpose and time frame to your team, so they can understand the pressure the business is facing as well as how long they may need to wait without an increase in their remuneration.

Next look for potential flight risks. These could be the people who are most motivated by money, and/or those who genuinely believe their financial rewards are not ‘fair’ for their role. Discuss with your superiors the possibility of a pay adjustment for these people and remember to point out how much more it will cost in terms of recruitment and possible loss of income if they are high performers within the business. Pay freeze does not always mean a complete freeze.

Another option is to look at alternative ways of compensating your workers, such as greater flexibility in working hours, home working or additional holiday time. For many people these could work just as effectively as financial rewards.

Finally remember that not everyone is motivated by money. For many of your employees other factors will be more important to them, such as job stability, working as part of a strong team or creative problem solving. As long as their salary meets their basic living needs they will stay if their other motivators are satisfied.

The key here is to make sure you understand what motivates each member of your team, and to manage their motivation pro-actively so you can ensure their needs are being met. Small changes really can make a big difference, so make sure you explore all avenues rather than assuming there is nothing you can do.

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August 20, 2018 at 11:41 am Leave a comment

Motivating Millenials…

A Millennial is generally defined as a person who reached adulthood around the turn of the 21st century, so born in the 90s. Now we are approaching the end of the second decade of this century, Millennials are the fastest growing segment of the workforce, with numbers as high as 1 in 3. Therefore, knowing how to engage with and motivate Millennials is more important than ever.

In general I don’t like to generalise!  Each person in your team is an individual and should be managed as such, however some common attributes can be identified which make Millennials easier to motivate.

Millennials are easily distracted

Brought up with technology and social media in their everyday lives Millennials are easily distracted by social media and digital communication such as texting and Whatsapp.

Solution: Encourage them to establish daily and weekly goals to maintain focus.  Be clear about what you expect from them, including deadlines.

Millennials thrive on recognition

Nurtured and pampered by their Baby Boomer parents, who didn’t want to make the same mistakes as the previous generation, Millennials are used to instant recognition and praise

Solution: Give regular praise to maintain drive.  Create a culture where balanced feedback is the norm, so that Millennials get used to constructive criticism as well.

Millennials find good works rewarding

A wealthier upbringing than their parents may have experienced mean Millennials are less motivated by the acquisition of money and need to feel that they are making a difference in and out of work.

Solution: Ensure that their job has a clear purpose and that they know what success looks like – they won’t stay just for the pay.

Millennials value flexibility

Aware from a young age of the need for a good work life balance, Millennials are looking for a more flexible working environment.

Solution: Be clear about your flexible working policy, ensuring that managers are trained to deal with remote workers effectively.  This is about creating a culture of trust, which Millennials will also value.

Millennials are tech savvy

Millennials grew up with technology and rely on it in their everyday lives.

Solution: Make sure your technology is up-to-date and fit for purpose.  Leverage it to reduce travel, provide flexible learning opportunities as well as using a breadth of communications media.

Millennials are team orientated

Encouraged to play team games and take part in group activities during their childhood, Millennials value teamwork

Solution: Team building exercises can really work well if they are correctly planned and implemented

Once again, I would emphasise that, in addition to these general principles, each person on your team, Millennial or not, should be treated as an individual when you are considering how to get the best from them.

If you need help motivating your Millennial team, we would love to hear from you.

 

 

 

March 13, 2018 at 9:51 am Leave a comment

Husband and Wife Teams

I have worked with a number of husband and wife teams, many of whom have been effective and successful.  But not without some challenges to overcome, due to the complex nature of their ‘multi-faceted’ relationships.

Whether they run their own business(es), or work in the same company, or even the same team, the first hurdle is to separate their work and their home lives.  Really separate them, as in removing any emotional baggage that has taken place at home when they come into work – not easy!

One way to help is to review how our couples are motivated at work, to enable them to have a deeper understanding of what makes each other tick.  Combine this with clear business goals and the right skills and they can be really focussed on business success.  That is providing they can switch off when they leave the office!

For example, one half of a couple, who ran multiple businesses together, as well as separate businesses, decided to set up a new business.  They knew this would take some time to build and ring-fenced the time to enable them to do so.  However, they soon found themselves under financial pressure from their spouse.

When we looked at their motivation profiles it was clear that one was more focussed on money and the other on quality and customer service.  This was clearly causing some conflict, so it was a relief to both to find out the reason behind it.  They were delighted to find that the common ground between their two opposing views was both achievable and very productive for the businesses.  It also enabled them to ‘park’ external factors and really focus on business outcomes.

Of course many teams can find themselves in similar situations to our couples, in fact being in a team can feel like a marriage at times!  Most, if not all, issues can be resolved by understanding what makes each other tick.  Simple, quick and effective!

May 16, 2013 at 1:43 pm Leave a comment

What does your team think of you?

Whenever we run a motivation review for team development we get to hear and see what team members think of their leader – with fascinating results.

We know that staff make plenty of assumptions about their leaders.  After all, leaders see all, hear all, know all, do all…….don’t they?  I mean, a leader would never have a problem with confidence, would they?

So it’s no surprise (to us!) that 99% of teams are unable to identify what motivates their boss.  Perhaps they are too busy looking down to look up.  Those that do look up will see ‘management behaviours’, which imply certain motivators.  However the leader is likely to be using their skills to adapt their behaviours, which may cause some internal conflict with their motivators.

That perception by staff could be very limiting when it comes to communication, collaboration, influencing and even career prospects for each individual.

With a little insight, the team can actually make their boss’s life easier, while enjoying their own roles so much more.  That sounds like a win/win to me……

March 12, 2013 at 1:57 pm Leave a comment

Banning working from home…

Many large corporations are moving away from the ‘working from home’ concept, with companies like Yahoo banning it altogether.  Unfortunately many employyes will leave their positions in reaction to these new policies.  A one-size-fits-all approach to working hours and conditions is likely to backfire.

Knowing how to motivate your team is vital if you are in pursuit of the greatest productivity.  Dynamic, forward-thinking organisations recognise the value of offering flexible working practices.  They reap the rewards from highly engaged staff who feel motivated and perform their roles to the best of their abilities.  This also lowers staff turnover and thus recruitment and training costs.

Others don’t give the flexibility they could, probably due to poor leadership and management practices and lack of trust.  This leads to some staff feeling de-motivated and under-performing.  Or they might even leave.

However, the ones who will leave first are likely to be some of your best people.  They are confident, competent and are likely to be sought after by your competitors.

The key thing is that some individuals love flexibility, others love being in the office and some like a mixture of both.  So your flexible working policy needs to incorporate the needs of each individual, and what makes them tick.

And your leaders need to be able to get the best from every individual, wherever they work.

Do you understand what makes your people tick, so you can make the most of flexible working in your team?

March 5, 2013 at 1:15 pm Leave a comment

Understanding motivators helps staff out of a rut

We all know that there’s a strong correlation between motivation and performance.  Recently a leader I was coaching had identified issues with a member of their team, and was trying to find them a role within the organisation that they would enjoy.

The employee had probably been in role for a couple of years longer than was healthy, so by now was very demotivated – the results being variable performance, and consistent mistakes.

The root of the problem was identified when we looked at their motivation profile.  They loved doing new things and solving customer problems, but their role just didn’t lend itself to this.  We discussed the risk of them leaving, but they insisted they wanted to stay at the company, in a different role.

New and exciting roles don’t come along every day, so the action plan here was to really focus on getting the mundane things completed quickly and accurately, to free up time to work on more creative areas.  As well as fulfilling the need for innovation, this approach is far more likely to lead to a new role, as the employee will be getting noticed for the right reasons.

So if you think you can’t get your staff out of a rut, think again.

February 26, 2013 at 1:13 pm Leave a comment

Take Note?

You might not think that your note-taking affects your performance – it does!

You might not think that your motivators affect your note-taking choices – they do!

Some of the leaders I work with can sit through a whole meeting and not take any notes at all.  In general they are the ones who don’t complete their actions.  So when I am coaching executives they will, at least, note down their actions.

On the other hand, some leaders take notes like they are going out of fashion.  The chances are they have missed something important in that meeting, because they were writing when they should have be listening.  Couple that with the additional time of writing them up or just trying to find the key points and it certainly has an impact.

What does this have to do with your motivators?  Well, some of us have ‘perfectionist’ tendencies, driven by our need for quality and demonstrating our knowledge.  We take notes so that we don’t miss anything – strange, because that’s exactly the probable outcome.  Whereas others are driven by freedom and entrepreneurialism, where note-taking is a job for someone else – with a similar result.

So what can you do to combat your motivators?  And where is the balance between no notes and reams of notes?

– understand the purpose of your notes

If you have to write them up verbatim, either record the meeting or get someone who is not involved in the meeting to take notes.  If they are only for you (to make sure you remember the key points and your actions), just note those down.

– are you really listening?

Whether you take lots of notes or no notes at all, the key thing in meetings is to listen – ACTIVELY.  That means engaging in the discussions to develop your, and others, thoughts and ideas.

– experiment

* draw up an agenda for the meeting, preferably using a mind map with just the key words on it
* actively listen during the meeting, but take NO notes (just try it)
* immediately after the meeting, add the key points and actions to the mind map
* observe the results

Do let me know how you get on.

February 15, 2013 at 11:16 am Leave a comment

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Alan Adair

Contact Details

Alan Adair

Extra Dimension
Helping you and your teams to be more engaged, motivated and effective.

21 Pelican House
Stone Close
Poole
BH15 4GE

Tel 01202 830047

Email alan.adair@extradimension.co.uk

Website
www.extradimension.co.uk

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