As a business leader trying to build a brand in this crazy, fast-paced world, much of your job will come down to engaging and motivating your employees. After all, if top talent is what you’re after and if employee retention is your goal, you need to be proactive and you need to incentivize and inspire them to stay at your side through thick and thin.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that your team members will want to stay just because you’re handing out hefty paychecks every month (although that’s also an important factor), because they’ll have no problem leaving you for a sweeter deal – after all, the modern job market is vast and full of opportunities, and millennials aren’t afraid to quit. That said, you shouldn’t break the bank trying to woo your team members either, so let’s take a look at some of the most cost-effective ways to motivate and engage your employees.
Work on honest and transparent communication
Communication is the foundation of trust, transparency, honesty, company culture, and everything in between. The common trait of “just another boss” is that they don’t really care about the individual, nor do they appreciate them for who they are. Rather, they see their team members as merely cogs in a wheel, pawns helping you and your company achieve its goals. As you might have guessed, this is a surefire way to drive the best of the best straight through the front door.
To prevent this, it’s important that you make communication more natural, personal, and oriented towards work and non-work-related topics. Sure, you have a lot of work to do and deadlines to meet, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t joke around on company time, engage in meaningful conversations, or diverge from the subject for a bit to lighten the mood before getting back into it – because it might just help you boost morale and re-energize your team.
Get personal with your team members
Speaking of effective communication and what it can do for your employees’ morale, always remember that the modern employee wants and needs to feel appreciated and respected. That said, in order to make your team members feel this way, you also have to earn their trust, so all of this has to come together through personalization. Engaging with the individual and showing them that you care is one of the most powerful and rewarding things you can do as a leader, so don’t waste this opportunity.
Start by doing your research. Notice how every one of your team members behaves in the workplace, and how they interact with their colleagues. Note down their most prominent characteristics. Next, engage in personal and meaningful communication. Be their friend, invite them to your office for a quick chat, and just ask how they’re doing, if there’s anything you can do for them, and let them confide in you. This is how you set yourself apart as a true leader.
Provide modern perks to make the job engaging
You can’t hope to build a team of devoted employees if your company is still clinging to the old ways. Quite simply, you need to change and evolve with the times and the trends that shape the modern workplace, and that means providing the perks your employees need to feel valued, empowered, safe, and happy.
For example, you might think that paying your employees on time is enough, but going the extra mile and implementing a payroll system that is more convenient for them can make a big difference. Traditional paper checks can be a real hassle, so opting for employee income cards will show your employees that you care. Payroll card programs are more convenient and less wasteful, and it can be time-saving both for you and your employees.
Build and promote your brand culture
The modern employee cares about the brand they work for, its unique identity and culture, as well as the values it promotes both internally and externally. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to create a traditional corporate environment that your employees can’t connect with, or want to connect with for that matter. This is why you need to build a positive company culture, and promote your brand among your team members.
Promotional materials work wonderfully for this purpose, as these materials allow you to position your brand as an important part of their everyday life, and help them associate that positive company culture with your name every time they use the product. Remember, it’s not just about nurturing a positive work environment, it’s also about those finer details that make a brand’s image truly stick.
Don’t forget to give praise and reward your team
And lastly, don’t forget to give plenty of praise for a job well done. That said, a simple pat on the shoulder and sincere smile won’t do, as you should create a comprehensive reward program for your team members that will reward them with something truly meaningful, something they actually need or that improves their overall quality of life. And whatever you do, be sure to tailor the reward to the individual to make it more personal, functional, and ultimately, show that you view them as an important part of your brand.
Motivating the modern employee to give it their best all every single day is definitely not an easy task. We live in a stressful, fast-paced world where the game is changing constantly and new opportunities are popping up at every corner, so it’s important that you recognize what truly matters to your team members, and provide them with the incentives they need to fall in love with their workplace.