When dealing with your employees, there’s a right way and a wrong way to show appreciation. Often times, or at least in my experiences, you’ll hear managers congratulate you by saying, “Thanks”, or, “be thankful you have a job.” A person says “thanks” to the stranger that lets them cut in line at the grocery store. It doesn’t really mean anything…it’s routine courtesy. We often times saying “thanks” when we don’t really mean it as well. Think of a time when someone was a jerk to you and you responded with a facetious “thanks” before you walked away. Or you caught a cold from you friends and told them “thanks” for giving you a cold. Sometimes that word is just not enough to motivate your employees and let them know that you are truly appreciative of what they do for you.
There was an article I posted on my company’s website about a business owner who increased the base salary at his company to $70,000 per year. Each employee contributed a little over a hundred bucks each month, and after 6 months, they all pitched in and bought him his dream car…a Tesla Model S. This stood out to me because even if he didn’t increase the salary, this shows me that he was a mentor to his team and someone that everyone respected and looked up to. A boss that doesn’t have that connection with his team, and makes that kind of salary increase for all of his employees, doesn’t get a car as a gift from their employees. They may not get anything at all besides a “thanks.”
You don’t have to give your employees a raise to $70,000 per year or higher to get them to respect and admire you, though. Jayson DeMers wrote an article for Inc.com about 6 ways to motivate your employees. (1) Taking the time to speak with your employees one on one can make them feel more appreciated, thus; more productive! (2) Giving advancement opportunities to your employees is important. Sitting around waiting for something to happen in your career for too long can be demotivating. Having advancement opportunities doesn’t just apply to positions, but also to knowledge. Learning something new can stir the stagnant pond your employees may be sitting in! (3) Leaders must always set the example. If you want your folks to be motivated to do work for you, then you must show them that you’re willing to do work for them. Teach and always be willing to help out. It can go a long way! (4) Having a company culture that people want to buy into can help create an inspiring work environment for your employees. White walls, tan desks, and black chairs can be very uninspiring. Allow your employees to decorate their workspaces or put up inspiring artwork on the walls. This isn’t a doctor’s examination room! (5) Providing a way for socialization by way of team meetings, or events, is a great way to get everybody excited about working with their co-workers. (6) Transparency is key. I’ve talked about this, myself, several times. Transparency leads to trust. Trust is the most important “thing” a leader can possess. This is the way you are able to influence, be influenced, lead, and be respected. Always be transparent because any deviation from that can lead to dishonesty and mistrust.
DeMers, Jayson. “6 Motivation Secrets to Inspire Your Employees.” Inc., http://www.inc.com/jayson-demers/6-motivation-secrets-to-inspire-your-employees.html. Accessed 9 December 2016.