What motivates you? This is a question we would see every once in a while, mostly on social media pages of, well, motivators. But in today’s fast-paced world, there’s this more pressing and provoking question: what demotivates you?
Working for about a decade now, I can say that I’ve gone through phases where I’ve lost motivation to give my best at work. Writing can be exhausting, particularly when you’re not writing about your personal interests. And when you put in certain factorsin the mix, the slump becomes more than a simple case of writer’s block.
Not an Isolated Case
What’s sad is that mine was not an isolated case. In a survey done by Jobstreet.com in 2017, the Job Happiness Index dropped to a mere 4.97 from 2016’s 5.25, with 10 being the happiest. Among the 9,326 Filipino employees asked, 33% thought a salary increase might help them feel happy about their jobs again, but 23% considered resigning.
When an employee is unhappy, it’s not only the employee that is affected but the company as well. Job dissatisfaction can lead to performance decline, and eventually, employee turnover.
Now, what are the factors that can demotivate and push good employees away? Here are the top four:
Trust is very important in building and maintaining any kind of relationship, whether it be romantic or business. Micromanagement, more often than not, gives employees the impression that they’re manager or employer doesn’t trust them to do a good job.
Any way you look at it, micromanagement is bound to backfire. Managers stress themselves unnecessarily, while employees feel inferior, thinking that they’re doing everything wrong. Some may feel restrained as they can’t fully express their ideas and potential.
In this day and age where telecommuting and remote work are already a thing, there are still companies out there who are not wholly open to the idea. This is especially true for companies with positions that can’t be performed fully remotely.
There’s a very thin line between healthy work routines and monotony, and that thin line is lack of flexibility. When that line gets crossed, you’ll have employees who will get sick of the monotony.
See, when we say work flexibility, we don’t necessarily mean to have all your employees work from home — though if it’s possible, why not? If you still want to keep your office setup, you can still allow some room for flexibility. For instance, you can arrange for flexi-time, allowing employees to report anytime within the day as long as they complete eight hours of work.
Another way to encourage flexibility is to offer the option to telecommute a few times a month. Not being overly strict on break periods will help, too.
Why do we work? To earn money that’s why. But, regardless of how small or big the paycheck is, if the pay isn’t commensurate with the amount of work they need to deliver, then there’s a disconnect.
When an employee feels overburdened by an unrealistic workload and they are not paid fairly, you can’t expect them to remain motivated. Who would, right?
For smaller companies with a smaller group of talents, it’s quite normal to have people multitask. But if you can’t pay them high enough yet, give them other value-laden opportunities and benefits. These may include a share in the company, bonuses for hitting targets, or an all-expense paid training or trip at least once a year. This way, you can make them feel valued.
Of course, don’t forget to evaluate employee workload and the expectations of all parties every once in a while.
Besides a growing bank balance, employees also want to see themselves growing as professionals. When a good employee is stuck in a position, doing the same tasks over and over, they will eventually lose interest. And if you don’t invest in their growth, they will think you don’t value their contribution.
Professional growth can come in many forms. Promotion is one. Moving an employee to a different department where their skills will be maximized also works. Allowing them to undergo training or pursue continuing education will also help them grow.
You may be the business owner or manager and you’re paying your employees to work, but you should also remember that without your good employees, your company will not flourish. Take care of them and they will take care of your business.
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