Last week we discussed some of the various ways to help keep your employees motivated and engaged. We often work with employees who have personalities very different from our own, or have to deal with those who need a little extra push in the right direction when it comes to motivation.

As a manager it is imperative to learn what makes these employees tick to determine what encourages them to do a good job. Here are some factors that may be the key in making your unmotivated employees encouraged and engaged.

Attainment

Some employees are goal-oriented and enjoy challenges that will sharpen their skills. You can often load these people with several short and long-term goals simultaneously. Motivate them by constantly introducing new tasks that build upon the ones they are currently working on.

Power

These employees want influence and control, need to feel important, and like being in the spotlight.  They express an interest in leadership roles and are highly motivated by special privileges or perks. Treat these employees like in-house experts and frequently ask them for advice (within reason). They will instantly be motivated because they savor the chance to offer information.

Belonging

Easily motivated, this group wants to feel a sense of camaraderie. Allow them to build rapport with their coworkers. Create meetings where they can collaborate and share ideas, rather than just sit and listen to a lecture. If you satisfy their need for affiliation, they will give you a solid effort.

Independence

If you attempt to manage an employee who seeks autonomy and strongly values their independence too closely, you’ll kill their desire to excel. The best way to connect with what motivates these freedom seekers is to give them overriding goals and let them find the best way to get the results.

Respect

Some employees simply want a little respect. If you listen to them, they’ll feel more motivated.  You need to give them full attention while listening, or they will feel disrespected. They love to hear praise and feedback on their performance and have a deep need for esteem. Give it to them and they will be motivated.

Equity

Everyone likes a fair, unbiased boss, but some individuals see the world as either black or white. They weigh and measure everything to make sure everyone is treated the same. They will pick up on inconsistencies and decisions that appear to vary from previous occasions. Approach them as if you were a lawyer and give them objective evidence to prove that you are fair and equitable.

Always keep in mind that each employee is a unique individual and what may work for one person won’t necessarily work for the other. Be observant and learn what makes them tick. Some employees are motivated by power and praise, another may just want some respect and to have their voice heard. Take the time to learn what you can do to help each employee succeed and reap the rewards of more engaged, productive, and an overall happier team.

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