By Corey Hastings
Picture this: It’s a new hire’s first day on the job – they’re eager, they’re excited, and they’re bustling with ideas to contribute to the team. Their energy is palpable, but will their enthusiasm last? Chances are, their work “honeymoon” phase will come to an end.
It’s no secret that employees can become overwhelmed, even bored, and this affects their productivity. To prevent disaster, establish a culture that focuses on employee happiness and offers incentives that drive motivation. This extends beyond the paycheck – along with a fair salary, employees need a workplace that caters to their personal needs and allows them to feel at home.
We’ve put together a list of ideas from some of our most successful clients on what works in keeping their employees motivated.
The definition of incentive is, “a thing that motivates or encourages,” which is precisely why they’re a great idea to keep your employees productive. As an employer you’re probably aware of traditional employee perks – company outings, gym memberships, paid time off. But today’s companies are thinking outside the box, and it’s working.
Tech companies like Google, Salesforce and Airbnb are leading the way. Google not only offers free gourmet meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner), but also allow all employees to bring their pets to work, which helps keep up energy and adds spontaneous bursts of joy throughout the day.
Salesforce offers the unique ability to take six days of paid volunteer time per year. They also give employees up to $1,000 to donate to their favorite charity.
Airbnb, an online apartment and home rental website, gives employees $2,000 per year to stay in any of their site listings around the world.
Offering fresh incentives that cater to your employees’ interests will give them something to work for, and something they can get excited about.
Nothing shows your appreciation for an employee better than celebrating their successes. From hitting sales goals to just showing up for work on Monday, it’s important to remind employees that you value them as a part of your team.
When employees hit certain milestones, whether they hit their numbers or land a new client, reward them. Your celebration could be a simple as a pizza party, or an acknowledgement and round of applause during an all-hands meeting. People love parties and praise, and these celebrations will act as a motivating factor for more and more employees to hit their goals, too.
We all know how easy it is to get “a case of the Mondays” after the weekend, which inevitably leads to a slow start to the week. Why not start off your week in the office with something employees can look forward to, like a Monday morning game or 30-minute donut and coffee party. Engaging with your team at the top of every week will give them something to look forward to on Monday mornings, and help jump-start their week.
Supporting your team with incentives and celebrations is all fun and games, but with activities needs to come encouragement from bosses and managers. A personal touch goes a long way.
It’s important to let your employees know you’re engaged with their work, and can offer feedback to help them learn and grow. When an employee hands in an assignment or task, rather than just thanking them, take the time to outline what was great about the work, “Thank you, I appreciate how you’ve included supplemental research to prove your point, it shows you’ve gone the extra mile.” Or, if the work is in need, constructive criticism, “Thanks, great start, but can you show me how you got from point A to point b? Additional research would help interpret your work.”