Head Coach, Cheerleader, Communicator, Mentor: Can You Do It All?

September 15, 2012 in , ,

Well-motivated employees are more likely to be productive and more creative. Successful employee motivation techniques can be as different as your employees themselves. So where do you get started? There are a variety of company programs you can put into place to help motivate your employees.

Training and Development
Identifying and enhancing the skills and knowledge of your employees can help improve work performance and may allow employees to reach goals for advancement. Training can also help fine-tune the leadership qualities of your managers and supervisors and help ensure they lead in ways that support your company’s policies. You may have an in-house human resources or training department that can outline programs and help create training materials, or you may find online courses that suit your needs. You can also look to outside vendors that offer training and development as part of a larger human resources outsourcing initiative.

Job Descriptions
Job descriptions should outline the skills, duties, responsibilities, and education required for each position at your company. These descriptions can be used as a training checklist to make certain employees are fully aware of all aspects of a job. With detailed job descriptions, your employees will better understand that the duties performed will be used as the basis for performance reviews and advancement. As your business grows and you take on more workers, developing customized job descriptions remains an important step. Additionally, creating training outlines for each job description, including the person responsible for training and training timeframes, will help position you as a successful employer.

Succession Planning
Identifying future leaders in any organization should be part of the strategic planning process and should be tied closely with the development and implementation of the business plan. Part of a good business plan involves creating a process to identify future leaders. As you cultivate your business, its success will become dependent in part on enhancing the skills of your employees so that they can lead the organization toward its future goals. A human resources director can create a succession plan, or you may choose to use a third-party organization to assist in developing the process.

Building Employee Relations
An employee suggestion program encourages initiative and provides a means to improve operations. With a program like this, you show your employees you care what they’re thinking. In turn, you’re giving them one more opportunity to have a direct impact on the success of the organization.

Employee Rewards and Recognition Programs
Employee reward programs may be offered for employee contributions and should be based on the value of the effort to the company. Rewards can range from time off to additional compensation to certificates of achievement. Employee recognition programs can go a long way toward improving morale and helping you hold on to your most valued workers.

Ongoing and open communication with employees is a hallmark of well-run companies. Don’t overlook regularly scheduled staff meetings, which are a great forum for open dialogue with employees. Also, employees should be encouraged to bring questions or problems to management’s attention, where careful consideration should be given to their concerns in a continuing effort to improve operations. Establish a policy that defines the stages of the problem-solving process and who can be consulted.

To assess the status of communications in your organization, you may consider creating a formal company communication strategy and identifying areas where gaps may exits. Be sure to take a look how communication is managed in the areas of:

  • client documents
  • customer service
  • conflict resolution

Workplace Harmony
Workplace tension often affects employee morale and productivity and could be very costly to a company. Taking the appropriate action to help prevent violence in the workplace is critical. By making effective hiring decisions, training employees on the dangers of workplace violence, teaching how to report threats or violence, and establishing a written policy about workplace violence, you help to create an environment conducive to workplace harmony.

All of the methods you decide to use for employee training, development, and recognition should be clearly defined and communicated to management as well as your employees where appropriate. Again, you may be comfortable in creating these materials yourself, or you may consider outsourcing to a vendor with expertise in the human resource field.

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