Running your own business is one of the biggest jobs you’ll ever love. Still, you can handle it better with a little help from others who really know what you’re up against. I say good morning to one of my strongest support networks every day when I greet my fantastic employees.
My amazing staff and talented techs here at ServiceMaster Restoration by Zaba put in long hours, and we’re on call 24/7. Whether you work with a small crew or direct field operations, you need to know how to keep employees motivated. They make all the difference in your professional success and the future of your business.
10 Easy Ways to Invest in Employee Motivation
Think about how to motivate employees in a small business as one of your smartest investments. You enjoy the ROI every time a job well-done converts a new contact into a loyal customer. The payoff extends beyond the books too. These 10 tips really help me help my teams do their very best every day.
1. Cultivate Their Skills
Identifying problems is always easier than solving them. I try to cultivate critical thinking skills in my employees so that they can address all kinds of issues from customer concerns to emergency calls. This helps them become more than staff and technicians; they develop as leaders too.
2. Celebrate Their Success
Whether your employees master markets across digital channels or navigate fleet vans in the field, let them know when they get it right. When someone does an outstanding job, kick up that traditional pat on the back. Make him or her hero for a day, and treat the whole gang to a celebratory lunch out.
3. Make Downtime Pay Off
Relaxed minds are surprisingly open to learning, so take advantage of downtime around the office. When things get slow, encourage staff to constructively run out the clock. Suggest activities like cross-training sessions where everyone gets to show off a skill set and teach something new to co-workers.
4. Give Motivation a Clean Environment
Whether it’s at home or the office, everyone prefers an environment that smells fresh and stays clean. My company services include both business and house cleaning in Chicago, so we keep our headquarters in top shape from floor to ceiling. Motivation always grows better in a clean workplace.
5. Let Them Shadow You
It’s one thing to lead by example. It’s another to let your employees see exactly what you do and how you get it accomplished. Extend your comfort zone to include someone who’s taking notes, listening to your end of calls and forming conclusions based on direct observations.
6. Hand Over the Reins
Delegating authority is one of the basic tenants of how to motivate staff because it works. It’s a great strategy for building confidence that becomes a solid foundation for good decision-making. Don’t be afraid to give employees control over situations that you know they can handle.
7. Be Generous With Compensation
All lists about how to keep employees motivated include paying fair wages, but you can do it with more than paychecks. Consider perks like flex spending accounts to help with child care. Be as generous as you can afford with performance bonuses, paid vacations and holiday time.
8. Know When to Reach Out
If someone begins to clock in late, argue with co-workers or give the job less than his best, you have to step in. You can’t solve every problem, but you can let an employee know that you care. Sometimes, a little support can make a big difference, so be willing to reach out.
9. Really Value Them as People
Ask your employees for input on things like developing company policies and modifying schedules. Implement their ideas, and let them know when their contributions pay off with positive results. Make it clear that you appreciate them as team members but you also value them as individuals.
10. Enjoy Your Working Family
Company picnics sound like a cliche, but they’re fun especially for small businesses. We schedule basketball games at the park, plan backyard barbecues and help each other with weekend projects. When we’re all back on the clock, it’s easy to stay motivated because we’re tackling every day with our working family.
The ROI of Great Motivation
I hope this tip list inspires your investment in employee motivation. My teams here at ServiceMaster Restoration by Zaba handle some of the toughest jobs imaginable tackling fire and flood restoration in Chicago, and they always make me proud. Women in business share a special sense of accomplishment when we help our employees do their best.
Sometimes, it can feel like we’re the ones who need motivation. That’s to be expected considering how hard we all work running our own companies. When I need a little extra support, I know I can reach out to other business-women across the country, and those connections are priceless. Never underestimate the ROI from great motivation especially when you apply to yourself.
Originally published at medium.com