How to Motivate Employees to Do Their Best

Lauren O'Donnell

Employees are a diverse bunch with varied interests. Each one has had a different taste of life and what motivates one might not motivate another. When handling a team, it can be quite difficult to get everyone on the same page and motivate them to give their best. Being a leader means much more than being a manager, it means to inspire motivation among them and get them to work as a team aiming for the betterment and growth of the company.

There are so many ways to increase the level of energy, commitment, and creativity that your employees bring to their jobs. Below are some tips to bring out the best in employees.


Build Trust

Trust serves as the foundation for healthy relationships, including those at the workplace. It paves the way for effective communication, employee retention and employee motivation, and contributes to the discretionary energy and the extra effort that people voluntarily invest in their work. This can’t be achieved if you’re always looking over their shoulder and trying to micro-manage every aspect, not allowing any freedom in decision-making. 

For example, when your team is working to achieve the goals set out for them, you should keep tabs on how they’re progressing, but never go overboard. There’s a fine line between being interested in their progress and intruding on their personal approaches or trying to do their job for them. Allow them the freedom to work at their own pace and try not to force any methods. Listen to what they need and help them overcome any hurdles they might be facing.

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Show Respect

You can demonstrate respect with simple, yet powerful actions. A good example is trusting employees to do the jobs they were hired to do without micromanaging. If something isn't being done correctly, address it in a straightforward and professional manner that details what needs to be corrected.


Give Feedback

Feedback is an important communication tool in a healthy work environment. It helps the company by improving processes and shows employees that you care about their career. If phrased correctly, regular feedback can be a useful tool for helping employees and, hence the company to grow.

Feedback can range from detailed and regularly scheduled performance reviews that let employees know where they stand to simply saying "good job" on occasion. It also involves constructive criticism. If employees are doing something wrong, they want to know, and they want to know how to correct the problem.


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Show Your Appreciation

Showing appreciation for the work ethic and professional integrity of your team will make them feel empowered. They will continue to produce high quality work and will pursue rewarded efforts. Encouraging them to progress and providing incentives along the way will demonstrate your leadership skills, while also helping them become a solid team and produce the best work possible.

For example, during team meetings, highlighting the benefits of someone's recent project is a nice way to recognise them publicly and remind them that their work is valued.


The surest way to bring out the best in your team is to believe the best of them. That means starting with the assumption that they're going to rock every assignment, even if there's no evidence yet to support that optimism. This means trusting them with things you don't know they can do yet, reserving judgment, and then giving them honest feedback.


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About Great Place to Work®

Great Place to Work® is the global authority on workplace culture. We help organizations quantify their culture and produce better business results by creating a high-trust work experience for all employees. We recognise Great Place to Work-Certified™ companies and the Best Workplaces™ in more than 60 countries. To join the thousands of companies that have committed to building high-trust company cultures that help them attract, retain and take care of their people, contact us about getting Certified today.


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