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can I motivate my employees?
Copyright ©1999 Claire Belilos
CHIC Hospitality Consulting Services
More tips in forthcoming book on Employee Motivation - List yourself here to be advised when the book
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How can I motivate employees?
The answer is
not so simple. Motivation comes from within, from a person's own
psyche, the innermost recesses of the soul, secret desires and deep-rooted
needs which motivate, "push" us towards their satisfaction.
What a manager can do is create an environment in which employees
can feel motivated.
Many people go through
life obscuring their intrinsic nature, unaware of their "true
calling", their "motivations". People
abandoned early dreams to deal with life's realities and vicissitudes.
They had to conform to society, family, the corporate
world and other circles, each of which dictates its code of
conduct: how to think, feel, eat, speak, behave and dress. Their
true selves disappear, get buried. It is only by triggering
and bringing out into the light people's intrinsic nature, gifts
and secret desires that we give them the opportunity to feel motivated.
This is no attempt at playing the psychologist, but
a rough explanation of some basic precepts.
However deep and complex
human nature is, all humans share basic needs that must be addressed,
ranging from shelter to more sophisticated drives. In his
hierarchy of needs, Abraham Maslow shows the gradual escalation
of workers' drives and motivations in this pyramid:
HIERARCHY OF NEEDS
Applied to workers,
it translates as follows:
physical needs: the ability to acquire food, shelter, clothing
and other basics to survive
safe and non-threatening work environment, job security, safe equipment
and friendship with fellow-workers, social activities and opportunities
one's dreams, using one's gifts, talents and potential.
Once basic needs
are satisfied, people want more. Progress is the essence of
human nature. When people's basic needs are addressed,
their mind and soul, free of threat and insecurity, open up to some
of their innermost drives. People are often confused between "superficial
wants" and "inner drives." Some individuals are in
pursuit of material luxury, while others pursue their thirst for
knowledge, artistic expression, a need to lead or help others, play
the hero or shine in society.
We cannot play the role
of psychologists or psychoanalysts. However, it benefits the
company if we discover who every worker is, his/her drives, special
gifts, abilities, hopes and plans for the future. If we take
time to discover this, understand what makes this person "tick",
we will be able to utilize this worker in the position which is
the best "fit", a step ahead towards employee motivation.
We must also clarify management values, design and implement
effective policies and techniques.
Every employee has a
need for self-expression, entertains plans for professional development
and career advancement, wishes to be accepted as "family
member", feel respect towards management and pride in his/her
work, receive acknowledgment and reward, be listened to and trusted.
Through strategic communications (including meetings) our duty is
to share with employees company goals, market, industry and business
information and future plans, and invite employees to give feedback.
We must learn how to place people in a role where they
can use their abilities and make progress towards the realization
of personal goals. Misplacements can cause a company substantial
financial loss due to turnover, accidents, lawsuits, rebates, refunds,
loss of customers and sales.
We must learn how to
create a corporate culture and a supportive work environment. This
is done through leadership and management excellence, a human approach,
effective human resources strategies, "positive discipline",
fair and just treatment to all, clearly defined policies, career
and personal development training programs (including cross-training
and job rotation), career pathing, organizational communications,
tools to facilitate communication, team assignments, reward programs,
objective appraisals, adequate pay, benefits and company activities.
It is important for
employees to know that management is aware of their existence, recognizes
them, remembers their names and greets them. Managers who fail to
greet employees or respond to greetings lead to a high degree of
de-motivation, lack of trust, and disloyalty.
Individuals and departments
need to be thanked for their hard work and special feats and be
rewarded for contributions. Managers who encourage employees
to use initiative and set higher challenges for themselves achieve
more positive results than those who cause employees to compete
with each other. Personal accomplishments at the expense of others
defeats team-work and negatively affects service to customers.
Managers can win over
employees' loyalty and best input by treating them as "partners",
showing care, listening to them and sharing.
Can this be easily accomplished?
When planned with sincerity and care, it most certainly can!
Copyright © 1999
This article is not
to be uploaded, sold or distributed in any form or manner without
the author's written permission
Further articles on employee motivation
Understanding Employee Drives
as a Motivational and Problem-Solving Technique
Effective Employee Orientations
and Supervisors Expected to Create a Motivated Team
and the famous article
by the late Mr. James Lavenson, Hotelier,
List yourself at http://www.easytraining.com/motivationbooklist.htm
to be advised when our
book on employee motivation will be ready. We welcome expressions
of interest from organizations and publishers wishing to sponsor
the writing of this book.
our Terms and Conditions
Claire Belilos, Chic Hospitality Consulting
Services, Home page: http://www.easytraining.com, specializes in Hospitality,
human resources strategies, organizational training and development,
Customer Service and problem-solving. She offers "on site",
online and distance consulting and coaching. She creates job,
training and evaluation tools, and custom-tailored solutions to
people management problems.
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