Employee motivation brings out the best in your team and ultimately plays a critical role in your startup’s maturation. In a day and age where the competition to attract and retain high-quality talent is skyrocketing, entrepreneurs must be wary of the appropriate practices to keep their current and future workforce engaged and happy in their roles. Else, they risk having unproductive employees, high turnover, and worse, losing their top talent to competitors.
Having motivated employees in your startup is invaluable. It boosts their morale, creating a dynamic and profitable operation. As a result, your workforce will be more productive and set your growing venture on the path to attaining optimal success. Regrettably, the pressure and burden of getting an unestablished entity off the ground can be overwhelming, causing deterioration of employee motivation.
Employee motivation isn’t a forte many entrepreneurs excel at. However, it’s a knack that workplace leaders need to nurture and monitor. This post elucidates more about employee motivation, why it should be an utmost priority in your organization, and, importantly, the best practices to motivate employees in a startup business.
What is employee motivation?
Employee motivation is the level of energy, commitment, persistence, creativity, and in sum, the workforce’s attitude towards their work. Essentially, there are two types of employee motivation in the workplace: extrinsic and intrinsic.
Intrinsic motivation is impalpable and is affected by several factors. It’s the willingness of employees to perform activities for internal reasons that are personally satisfying. On the other hand, extrinsic motivation drives employees to execute tasks mostly to receive external rewards such as money, promotions, and fame.
There is hardly a one-size-fits-all when pursuing employee motivation. This is because of the different opinions, interests, cultures, society, and lifestyles in the workplace. Still, leaders must devise an ideal approach to find ways to keep up the motivation levels of their team members.
It’s pretty elementary to identify highly motivated and engaged employees. They are more productive and go the extra mile to meet objectives. This is because they take pride in their work, believe in their leaders and organization, and feel connected to what it’s trying to achieve.
Benefits of employee motivation for your startup
Employee motivation is paramount in ensuring the maturation of your startup. As already outlined, keeping team members motivated and engaged boosts their morale, improves their productivity, and ensures they are invested in the success of your startup. Still, there is more. Here is a detailed overview of how your startup will benefit from a highly motivated workforce.
- Lower levels of absenteeism- Highly engaged and motivated teams are content with their work environments and will rarely miss work without a good reason.
- Lower levels of staff turnover – A high and recurring employee turnover rate is a top warning sign your startup may be falling. Your startup’s founding team plays a crucial role in its path to success. Poor staff morale causes your employees to abandon ship. If you find your employees leaving their positions, it can result in a significant setback, considering the number of resources you will spend to fill up the lost resources. It’s almost impractical for highly motivated employees to leave an organization.
- Motivation improves the performance level of employees – Motivated employees tend to be punctual, highly productive, and focus on their work. They are rarely distracted, channeling their zeal into more productive tasks that propel your startup to scalable heights.
- Better customer service – Motivated employees ensure your startup’s clientele receive top-notch services. They are always available to respond to queries, offer feedback and effectively communicate to your customers.
- Excellent reputation and solid recruitment – Satisfied workers will boast of the friendly work environment in your organization. As a result, when an opportunity opens up in your startup, top talent will flood in, streamlining the hiring process.
- Highly motivated employees induce a sense of positivity in the workforce.
- Improved relations between team leaders and workers. In addition, motivation creates a supportive work environment.
Strategies to crush employee motivation for your startup
As already outlined, startup operations can be so overwhelming, causing leaders to lose sight of motivating employees while they focus on customer satisfaction, making sales, and marketing. Nevertheless, proper employee engagement will differentiate between a pressurized, non-satisfied workforce and a happy, enthusiastic startup team. Try these practical, feasible, proven strategies to motivate employees in a startup environment.
1. Set goals to create meaning
Employees who feel clueless or unsure about their goals lack the morale to set the organization on a path to success. Therefore, it’s vital to set clear and frequent targets that add to your primary objective. Most importantly, communicate these objectives to the team members. They should be realistic and shouldn’t be overwhelming such that they don’t foster flexibility in the workplace.
2. Celebrate milestones
Acknowledge both big and small wins. Setting and celebrating significant milestones and mini-feats keeps employees motivated and encourages them to pursue other goals within the organization. In addition, celebrating achievements shows how far you have come as a team and will inspire the next big move.
3. Promote employee participation
Involving your team members in the decision-making process makes them feel valued and is a helpful communication tool. Participative management motivates employees by creating a friendly and positive environment. Your team members also have the opportunity to show more creative and analytical ability. In addition, they feel like part of your organization, making them responsible for the work. Structured feedback will also go a long way in keeping your staff motivated and engaged.
4. Give your team autonomy
The ability for employees to control the relevant aspects of their work situation enhances their sense of job satisfaction, motivation, and overall well-being. This, in turn, improves your team’s efficiency. On the other hand, imposing stringent roles in the workplace and constantly supervising your employees’ actions damage leadership trust and create unneeded performance pressure. Therefore, it would be best to give your startup employees the autonomy to choose their ideal working method as long as they meet objectives.
5. Give rewards
Recognizing and rewarding top-performing employees leads to employee engagement and motivates team members to change their work habits. Acknowledging employee contributions shows appreciation for their efforts leading to a happier and more productive workforce. Rewards don’t have to be monetary benefits. Company benefits such as free meals, medical, or housing facilities are suitable perks to motivate employees. Still, operate within your startup’s limit.
Your startup success is heavily rooted in the level of your staff’s engagement and motivation. Happy employees equate to a healthy bottom line. Employee motivation ensures a positive work environment, efficient working, and high productivity in your organization.