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You have raised an issue that is exceptionally challenging both for the management in general and the HR in particular. Obviously there cannot be a ' one size fits all' solution and so whilst I would share my views you would have to adopt, adapt, change, modify and innovate on my observations.
1. Money would continue to be a major driver of motivation but obviously in tough economic times that would be the lowest priority for management to use as a motivational tool. However do not ignore this reality and it is possible that with some innovative thinking you can tweak incentives to suit a good motivational model.
2. There is absolutely no substitute for self motivation. This must be your focus area of motivation especially for managerial level personnel. Ensure that they have pride in their organization to begin with. Then move on to creating a conducive work environment both physical endearing and culturally vibrant. Simple things like proper lighting, pleasant colors on the walls, some public relations that ensures company gets attention the media etc. do contribute to employee pride in their organization.
3. Role clarity for each employee is paramount. Each employee must be made to feel an essential part of the well oiled corporate machinery even if they are just a small cog in the scheme of things. Top management meetings with divisions/ functional teams with a pep talk thrown in would also add zip into the teams.
4. Rewards and recognition of employees across the company are a decisive motivational tool. They would also compliment the role clarity mentioned above. Having an innovative approach and ensuring that the same people do not get the awards year on year would make the attempt even more fruitful.
5.Listen and respond with the right attitude. Almost every one no matter at what level of the hierarchy has an emotional need to open up and share or vent his/ her feelings. Most people are vastly relieved and their minds free of tension once they have shared their fears/ worries/ expectations/ requirements with someone in authority. Create and environment where seniors are coached to listen and respond. Similarly ensure that the seniors are also provided a platform to be heard and they must be give empowerment to proactively act on concerns that they need to address.
Apart from these broad suggestions, it is possible that you may get some additional inputs from the following Inspirational and Motivational blogs listed below.
www.actspot.wordpress.com Over 1,38,000 views and 820 followers
www.poweract.blogspot.com Over 42,000 views and 210 followers
3rd November 2012 From India, Mumbai
Mr B. Jacob has given very useful inputs in his own inimitable style.
Have you tried Cite HR Archives ?
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V.Raghunathan Navi Mumbai
3rd November 2012 From India
1. Be fair to employees in day to day dealings and have realistic expectations from them.
2. If company is drowning or performing poorly due to poor governance or a particular section of employees donot blame everyone.
3. Set business and work objectives judiciously, fairly, 'smart'ly.
4. If performance is on positive trend, even if cutting cost is priority, reward the deserving well by way of money and by recognizing worthy efforts.
3rd November 2012 From India, Delhi
Pl confirm to this Forum if B.Jacob's excellent suggestions cover ALL your concerns & possible situations--given the fact that your location is Lisbon, where there COULD be special/specific/unique situations prevalent?
Quite often the First consequence of difficult times is 'delay/decrease of salaries'. Does this situation exist in your company? If yes, I think you first need to find ways to handle this issue before you focus on other aspects of motivating them.
Pl feel free to share any specific issues/situations that you could be facing.
3rd November 2012 From India, Hyderabad
You can individually figure-out the achievements of each and every employee whether its a professional or personal make it highlighted in front of the company. This will make employee feel attention of the company towards him. You can create a data sheet for this & bring into light one by one & time to time.
4th November 2012 From India, Chandigarh