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Article: Four Ways to Keep Employees Motivated Related Resources

Four Ways to Keep Employees Motivated
by Duncan Brodie

In many industries, professions or sectors, the demand for high quality employees is outstripping supply. In 2007, it was reported that over 60% of organisations were finding it difficult to find quality staff. This lack of supply is creating what is commonly referred to as a war for talent. Keeping employees motivated is something positive that any organisation can do. So what specific things can they do?

Keep workloads manageable

Technology, downsizing, recession or fears of a recession are just some of the factors that are leading to reductions in headcounts. The trouble is that those that are left are expected to deliver more with less. While there is always going to be scope for efficiencies, it is important to keep workloads manageable. Why? Levels of retention will drop, recruitment costs will increase and bottom line profits will fall. Even worse, if a business gets a reputation for burning out employees, it will struggle to attract people to posts.


While there is a need for rules, regulations and process in every business, it is important to recognise that people are not robots. They like to have some degree of autonomy on how the job is done rather than being told exactly what to do. Giving people autonomy, holding them accountable and giving them the opportunity to be autonomous is one of the easiest ways of motivating and it costs nothing to do.


While money alone is not the main motivator for most people, it is important. Creating the right reward structure that motivates individuals to deliver results motivates the individual and gets results for the business. Take the time to create a reward structure that motivates and provides incentives.


Employees accept rules but look to managers and leaders to apply these consistently. Everyone likes to be praised from time to time, to be recognised for a job done well or going beyond the call of duty for a customer. Make sure that equality is a key consideration when dealing with employees.

At the end of the day, contrary to what managers and leaders often believe, money is not the number one motivator for most employees. Make a point of finding out what motivates your employees and start to find ways in satisfying these motivators.

Duncan Brodie of Goals and Achievements Ltd (G&A) works with professionals and progressive public and private sector organisations who want to develop their management and leadership capability in order to achieve more success. Sign up for his free e-course and monthly newsletter at


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