The No. 1 way managers kill staff motivation
by Amy Beth Miller, editor, Communication Briefings
Despite your best efforts to plan rewards and boost morale, you might be killing your team’s motivation. While employees respond to many different types of motivators, one thing is guaranteed to put the brakes on their drive and initiative: your failure to trust them. Check your behaviors against this list:
- Hovering. Check in with new employees frequently, but once you have trained them well, back off. What you see as being an attentive manager feels like micromanagement to them.
- Doing their work. Don’t do tasks that your staff should do. Don’t assign a project and immediately weigh in with your ideas, essentially telling the employee exactly what to do. Granting employees authority and flexibility in how they do their work builds their engagement. Set the parameters for assignments and allow them to fill in the details. If you have advice that would significantly improve results, suggest, don’t tell. Examples: “What if …?” and “Have you considered …?”
- Denying opportunity. If employees never fail, you aren’t challenging them. Employees want to learn and develop new skills. That won’t happen if you don’t trust them to attempt new assignments.
Last month’s question
In May we asked how you energize your staff. Fifty-eight percent said you plan fun celebrations throughout the year. Half of you rely on setting attainable goals and assigning challenging work to motivate your employees.
One reader taps the power of praise. That person wrote in “I praise his\her work individually, and then in front of the group.”
Discover more ways to motivate your team in A New Supervisor’s Guide to Motivation and Recognition.
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