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Blog: Can We Have Some Order Here?
Workplace Motivators

It can be hard to keep employees motivated at work, but it's not impossible. Motivation is about relationships -- it happens when you become personally invested in the goals that the larger team is working toward. How do you get individual staff members to feel that sense of ownership about the job? Here are some suggestions.

Keep It Interesting

While all employees (even the boss!) will have some less-than-exciting responsibilities thrown into their job descriptions, you don't want the bulk of anyone's duties to be mind-numbing busy work. A person who does "grunt" work day-in and day-out is likely to receive little fulfillment from his or her efforts -- a sense of satisfaction is directly linked to the level of effort a person puts into each task, so keeping employees happy is tantamount to keeping them productive. Make sure that every person spends at least a portion of each day on projects that spark their interest keep them excited about the job. Besides, you hired them for a reason -- because they had certain skills and areas of expertise. Try to involve each staff member in assignments that speak to their talents and interests.

You see, work is about more than just getting the "work" done -- it should also provide an opportunity for growth and expansion of an employee's skills. The quickest way to turn someone off to a job is to assign a task that is substantially below that person's skill level (you don't ask the VP to change the toilet paper in the bathroom!) Your people are capable of so much more than filing and collating, but you have to challenge them to discover their talents! Don't be afraid to put a staff member in charge of a project that seems slightly out of his or her reach -- the intellectual stimulation will keep that person engaged in a way that "busy work" does not. And if you challenge your employees today, you'll be able to give them more difficult assignments in the future, without worrying about overburdening them. Just make sure the person has all the tools he or she needs to successfully complete the project -- assigning a task without providing enough time, training, or resources will only frustrate you both.

Allow Them To Own The Process

Showing your employees that you trust them is an incredibly powerful way to improve morale and motivation -- no one likes to be micro-managed. Once you have assigned a project, give your staff enough freedom to decide how to accomplish the job. Don't nitpick and second-guess and hover. As long as the work is successfully completed, who cares how it was accomplished? You'll be amazed at how your folks flourish when you let them take the reins.

However, "hands-off" doesn't mean that you disappear from sight. Some bosses expect their employees to work entirely independently, with no supervision at all. And while you shouldn't have to babysit your people, you do need to be available to them if they have questions or concerns. Your job is management -- and that means providing consistent support and a trusted sounding board. Regular staff meetings and "open door" time for speaking to individual employees will assure them that you're part of the team, too.

Finally, give credit where credit is due! It has been shown that a person will work harder for praise than even a raise in pay. If you want to keep your employees motivated in the long run, take the time to say, "Job well-done!

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posted on: 2/10/2011 11:30:00 AM by Ramona Creel
category: General Organizing Tips

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Can We Have Some Order Here?

by Ramona Creel

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About Ramona:

I have been a Professional Organizer for more than 10 years, I am a NAPO Golden Circle member, and I was the original founder of OnlineOrganizing. I have worked one-on-one with scores of clients and have trained dozens of newbie organizers as they got started in the industry. I provide both hands-on and virtual coaching to help clients improve their organizing skills and simplify their lives. I invite you to visit my website at http://www.RamonaCreel.com, and I challenge you to find one new idea that you can put into practice in your life, to help you become better organized, starting TODAY! I am passionate about coaching folks toward a more balanced, productive, and enjoyable life -- and I firmly believe that if I can do it, so can you!

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