Leadership and career

10 Ways Not to Motivate Employees

By July 16, 2013 No Comments

Employees are feeling unmotivated, uninspired, unconnected and just burned out with work. Part of that is possibly because the management is not connecting with their employees, encouraging them and finding out how to inspire them and help with whatever they might be struggling with. Good managers have more productive employees. Bad managers have unhappy, unproductive employees. Managers need to re-engage their employees.

Here is a list of the top ten things not to do to engage your employees:

1. Don’t practice the halo effect. Thinking that because a person has one good quality, they must be great at everything else as well. This prevents managers from seeing opportunities for improvement. Also, managers should avoid the opposite of the halo effect, which is the devil effect.

2. Don’t ever humiliate or demean employees. Especially don’t do it in front of others. This one is really self-explanatory.

3. Don’t withhold feedback. You shouldn’t assume that your employees know what they need to improve on or that they will just figure it out on their own. You need to be good at giving feedback, both constructive and negative feedback. Your employees can’t be expected to improve if you don’t tell them what they need to improve on.

4. Don’t underestimate the power of ongoing one-on-one conversations. Good conversation can be used to build trusting, more productive relationships with your employees.

5. Don’t assume your team knows what winning looks like. Clarify what winning or excellence looks like to your employees and then work on helping them to achieve it for themselves and the organization overall. You can’t over communicate this.

6. Don’t assume people understand your reasoning behind decisions. Also, don’t blame any decisions blame any decisions on “HR”, “upper management”, or anyone else. Your employees will see right through that. Just remember, your employees aren’t mind readers.

7. Don’t forget that praise is about them, not you. Think about what the individuals would want to receive and how they’d like to receive it when you are recognizing employees. Don’t give them something that will be stressful for them, such as something public for someone who is a very private person.

8. Don’t speak negatively about other team members, peers, or senior management leaders. You don’t want to undermine other people and you don’t want to come across as a gossip or a bully to your employees. If you talk to them behind someone’s back, they will worry about what you might say about them to others.

9. Don’t give ‘sandwich’ feedback. This means saying something good, quickly something bad followed by something else good. This just sends across a jumbled message that doesn’t give a clear purpose to the receiver.

10. Don’t ever stop recruiting. Even after you have already hired them, you want your employees to know you still want them there working for you. If they don’t feel valued in the company, they might leave for somewhere they are.

Now you know the top ten things you shouldn’t do to engage your employees. Hopefully these don’t sound like any habits you have, but if they are, fix them. So go and re-engage your employees and be a great manager with happy, productive employees.

Published by Conselium Executive Search, the global leader in compliance search.  

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