Tips for driving productivity and curbing laziness
October 31, 2011
Whatever sort of business you run, if you have employees, they'll need to be motivated at one point or another. Sure, you can equip the old what-do-I-pay-you-for argument, but that can breed resentment. True motivation - the kind that breeds consistent productivity and morale - must be a balanced approach between monetary and personal compensation.
To curb laziness and incite action, you must show yourself to be a hard worker. You must also inspire employees - a complicated task that depends on their individual responsibilities and the industry at hand. If possible, tie their unique role to the needs of something larger.
People want to feel as though they have a working hand in the success of something important. This is also the seed of ambition, as people want to be able to see their goal - be it a management position, a specific sale or whatever. Offer your workers a glimpse of what's possible and they'll gun for it, perhaps competitively so. Of course, such goals are not quickly reached, so it's important to offer smaller rewards along the way.
"A job well done is its own reward, but you should also incentivize your employees to exceed the goals you've set out for them," writes Inc. magazine. "These rewards could be monetary in nature, but you could also offer more paid vacation or even the opportunity to work from home occasionally."
Employers can also combat inactivity with more responsibility, as a simple workload - and the pressures that it entails - can certainly drive productivity. However, once again, you need to balance new responsibilities with a perceived reward.
"Hopefully your employee isn't lazy when it comes to every aspect of her job," Inc. explains. "Take the time to figure out what excites her. Perhaps she does best when working with a group or excels when involved with strategy."
Sometimes laziness can be spurred by simple repetition and boredom. To keep workers on their toes, make things different. Whether that means a shift in attitude, scenery or something else is up to the organization at hand. Ultimately, nobody wants to get bored with their job, so make sure there's always something to do and fill in the downtime with fun.