I was looking at the 2011 Global Mindset Index Report this week,(click here to download it) and it makes interesting and rather disturbing reading. It shows, among other things, that:
These results were obtained by surveying participants in America, Europe, South America, Africa and the Asia-Pacific. In a nutshell, the findings reveal the following:
These trends heighten the need for leaders to act now to ensure their team members bring a mindset to work that will enable them to achieve and perform. So, what can leaders do?
As the world’s economy goes through an intriguing stage, we are looking for leaders to do exactly that…lead. And if you can learn the lessons from this report, people will look to you for inspiration and development in the future.
I read a piece from John Sylvester recently that said the Number 1 reason employees leave a company is from lack of recognition.
Not sure if you would all agree with that, as some managers I’ve recently talked to say their people are leaving for more money. But isn’t that exactly the same thing? If they want to leave for more money, are they really saying that you do not recognise their contribution and they want to go to a company that does?
A recognition scheme can help you to improve retention and morale by giving your employees a sense of belonging and a feeling of actively contributing to the success of a wider team.
A well thought out recognition scheme can help you to:
• Reinforce employee actions to mirror company values
• Promote your brand
• Foster a sense of belonging and a recognition culture
• Reduce recruitment costs – the average cost per employee currently stands at £8,200
• Empower line managers to award positive behaviour
• Improve customer service levels – For every 1% increase in staff loyalty a 0.5% increase can be seen in customer loyalty – (Study by Harvard Business School)
• Create a more productive team
• Reduce attrition
A good recognition programme will include awards and merchandise incentives, rather than simple money bonuses. Cash incentives could cost up to 6 times as much as non-cash incentives and provide similar results. Over time employees come to expect cash incentives and as such, rather than recognising performance that goes above and beyond the norm, cash incentives lose their value over time.
So you need to identify what kind of things will not only motivate your teams but also provide the recognition they are looking for.
Employees who feel appreciated are more likely to stay motivated and productive than those who feel neglected and unhappy. Motivating your employees by throwing in a few incentives doesn’t have to cost a fortune and can actually be fun. Here are a few things to consider:
Reward your employees for their hard work and dedication by giving them extra time off, flexible schedules, or part-time hours on certain days. This type of time-based incentive works well for your most mature employees because they’ve worked hard for years and may be looking to make changes. Being flexible will allow you to keep a great employee while motivating him to stay loyal and remain in the workforce as opposed to retiring early.
Flex time during the holiday season is another great incentive. Allowing your employees to flex their schedules a little will have a significant impact on the number of last-minute callouts you experience as people become stressed over shopping and holiday preparations.
One of the biggest complaints I hear from employees is that their managers simply don’t understand how hard they have to work. Encourage your managers to give their team members a break by taking over their desks for an hour, half day, or even a full day. Your employees will feel appreciated and your managers will get a better understanding of how their employees feel as they work through their day to day tasks.
Take a Field Trip
Every once in a while, whether it’s once per quarter or twice per year, shut down for a half day and take your employees out to lunch, to see a movie, or even to the local arcade or bowling ally. Doing so will prove to your employees that you value their hard work and effort while at the same time promoting an enjoyable work atmosphere that your employees will look forward to each day. Some employees would rather earn a little less to work in a fun environment than take higher pay to work in a miserable place. Take advantage of your ability to promote a positive work environment.
All of these motivational techniques will keep your employees happy without you having to fork over cash in bonuses or extra pay. Your team members will appreciate your efforts and as they become happier with their jobs you’ll notice an increase in productivity – guaranteed!