Here are some questions you should be asking yourself when wondering how to motivate your employees:

Can you name ten ways in which you motivate your agency employees?  Can you name one? Or are you too busy putting out fires to consciously think about keeping your team fired up and working at a peak performance level?

It’s all too easy to complain about an employee’s perceived lack of performance on the job. Sometimes, performance can be dramatically improved just by paying a little attention to all your employees. Too often we end up taking good performers and the ones we like for granted and grumble about the ones that need to improve.

Having a strategy to motivate, grow and retain your biggest and most expensive asset is just good business.

It’s part of working ON the business, and not just IN it!

Here’s a list of my top ten tips when you are wondering how to motivate your employees:

  1. Consciously try to say “hello” or “good morning” or “good night” or “good job” to everyone, every day. Notice them and acknowledge them.  It sounds simple but how many days do you walk through the office and just walk right by people because you’re on your phone or deep in thought?
  2. Personally thank employees for doing a good job – face to face, in writing, and in front of others. Do it often and sincerely.  You cannot be too grateful.
  3. Be willing to take the time to meet with and listen to employees – as much as they need or want. Provide employees specific and frequent feedback about their performance. Support them in improving performance.  Ask for their opinion too.
  4. Recognize, reward and promote high performers; deal with low and marginal performers so that they improve or leave.  And don’t keep marginal players on the team for too long.  It’s demoralizing for the ones who deserve to be there.
  5. Provide information about how the company makes and loses money, upcoming products and services and strategies for competing.  Teach your employees how oyu run your business so they can help you achieve the business’ goals.
  6. Explain each employee’s role in the overall plan. Involve employees in decisions, especially the decisions that affect them. Involvement equals commitment.  Give them specific ways to contribute and earn rewards from those contributions.
  7. Give employees a chance to grow and learn new skills; encourage them to be their best. Show them how you can help them meet their goals while achieving the organization’s goals. Create a partnership with each employee and invest in them.
  8. Provide employees with a sense of ownership in their work and their work environment. Give them a voice in aspects of the work that impact them.
  9. Strive to create a work environment that is open, trusting and fun. Encourage new ideas, suggestions and initiative. Learn from, rather than punish, mistakes.
  10. Celebrate successes – of the company, of the department, and of the individuals in it. Take time for team- and morale-building meetings and activities. Be creative and fresh.

There they are – ten different tips on how to motivate your employees. I know there’s not one new idea on the list, but I also know you aren’t doing them all.  I think you will be surprised at how quickly the employees respond and the bottom line impact it has on your business.