Inspiring your team to do better can be an uphill climb.
Most often, it takes bonuses and additional compensation or similar monetary perks. But did you know that motivating your team doesn’t necessarily have to cost anything?
Great communication can make quite a huge difference. Especially when it stems from understanding what motivates your employees and what holds them back at work.
Not sure what to say? Here are six key sentences that always make a positive impact.
These two words should be easy to say, but some bosses find it hard to speak them out loud.
Verbal recognition costs nothing but is always very effective. Sure, a gift card is nice, but hearing your boss say you did amazing work can be just as (if not more) gratifying.
Of course, if you also have the budget to do both, then by all means, go ahead.
“How can I better support you?”
Many employees feel that they give more than they get. Prove them wrong by regularly checking in on how they’re doing. Ask about what’s on their plate – and more importantly, what you can do to help them get things done.
Surprisingly, this can be quite effective if you want to lower your employee turnover. As Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg pointed out, “Leadership is about making others better as a result of your presence and making sure that impact lasts in your absence.”
If you show your employees that you’re willing to support them (and actually follow through), they’ll be better equipped to do their work well -and be less likely to jump ship easily.
“What can we do better next time?”
If you’re a business owner, you ought to know your brand inside and out. However, you won’t be able to make the right decisions all the time. And this holds true for your employees, too.
Mistakes are part of the learning process. Success isn’t the absence of mistakes, but often the end result of learning from one’s mistakes.
So the next time someone screws up, encourage accountability, but don’t forget to discuss what went wrong and how to do better next time.
“What do you think?”
Great leaders ask great questions. Contrary to popular belief, they don’t have the answers all the time. Instead, they seek advice from the right people and use their input to make an informed decision.
Hence, make it a habit to ask your employees for their thoughts on certain matters. You might be surprised at how often the best insights come from the most unexpected places (and people).
“Let me know if you have any questions.”
It’s not enough for leaders to ask questions of their staff. Conversely, they must also be willing to answer them.
The truth is, many employees find their bosses intimidating and often hesitate to approach them for help. This is where an open-door policy comes in, and be proactive about reaching out to assist those who need help.
As a bonus, this approach often results in people being able to finish their tasks faster and better.
“I have confidence in what you can do.”
It can be tempting to micromanage everything. Who doesn’t want to ensure that your people meet deadlines and produce quality output, right?
However, if you truly want your employees to grow and contribute more, you have to let go of the reins at some point.
Give your team members the opportunity to rise to the challenges. Allow them to explore, be curious, and learn. And while you do that, let them know that you have confidence in what they can do.
Sure, there are other different ways to recognise your employees. What’s important, though, is being consistent about it.
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