Strangely, I’ve been receiving Inc. magazine for free in the mail the past few months. I’m not quite certain why it’s being sent to me, or who may have given me the subscription. But at any rate, I finally had a chance to read though it, and it’s fairly interesting. The first tidbit that I thought I’d share with everyone: “Three Things That Motivate Employees More Than Money.”
1. Create role models. Highlight your top performers’ strengths, and let them know that you want them to be an example for others. You’ll set the bar high, and they’ll be motivated to live up to their reputations.
2. Give recognition and small rewards. Give a shout-out to someone in a company meeting. Run contests or internal games, and keep track of the results on a whiteboard that everyone can see. Tangible awards that don’t break the bank can work, too. Try things like dinner, trophies, spa services, and plaques.
3. Make your ideas theirs. People hate being told what to do. Instead, ask them in a way that will make them feel as if they came up with the idea. “I’d like you to do it this way” turns into “Do you think it’s a good idea if we do it this way?”
I must admit that number two isn’t all that original or unique, but it does work…we’ve used that method at my current workplace and it motivates our employees. I’ve seen the other methods deployed by different leaders (though not as often as #2), and they can work really well when done correctly.