02 Jan Motivation and Employee Absenteeism
Developing Strategies for increasing motivation are a dime a dozen, how about some practical advice before the four tons of college information gets into an employee’s brain. Here is a paper I wrote during my BA/BS program regarding employee motivation directly related to my own experiences as an employee. When you are not sure what the right thing to do is – ask your employees, they know better than anyone else does about what they want.
Six Steps for Motivation:
”Set the Expectations”, ”A Well-Trained Employee Is A Happy Employee”, ”Coach Your People Until They Get It Right”, ”Recognize Good Behaviors”, ”Pay Attention To Your Bad Days”, and ”Rewards Are Powerful Motivators” are six steps for motivation when dealing with ”Motivational bankrupt(cy)”. Management should be refreshed on these important rules when dealing with their employees. When we set expectations employees understand what the goals are and able to make efforts to achieve them. Additionally, involving employees in goal making processes adds autonomy that encourages employees to grow and feel accomplishment in achieving their goals .Training is essential to the success of employees and continued training provides an opportunity to increase productivity and job satisfaction; and often the best training is from professional training staffs.
Rule Of Professionalism:
Work with employees and ”coach” them, because employees cannot improve until they know what they are doing wrong and what the right way is .Take pride in tasks well done, a ”Thank you” or ”Job well done” can go a long way to increasing motivation; additionally respond to mistakes with positive remarks followed by an explanation of what could have been done better . Do not take your bad days out on others, which is a general rule of professionalism that should always be practiced. Offer rewards that encourage employees to exceed expectations or accomplish harder tasks. While these are six steps of general reference, we can also consider finding out what the problem is by approaching the staff and investigating from within.
Walk in My Shoes:
Sometimes the right answers are not written in books and studied by thousands of business professionals. Some answers require we get right down into the midst of things and find out for ourselves. For instance, working in a call center taught me that a business can look great on paper – policies in order and understandable, employee handbook straight forward, training exceptional, and goals remarkable; however, three weeks on the phones – under the systems that seemed so wise- can teach a person that working under a call center company isn’t all about the pretty pictures they paint in six weeks of training. Human Resources or Employee Relations should always take time to put themselves into the employee’s shoes and see what is really going on.
It Isn’t Pride – It’s Respect:
Ask and you shall receive, if this is the policy, then it is, but if it isn’t – don’t offer it. Many times companies promise raises in a few months of employment; however, after those 90 days are up the management finds a thousand ”improvement areas” that have to be worked on before the raise can be offered; even to the point of making them up so they have the budget to give raises to employees they are friendly with. Being up front, fair, and honest is essential to retaining staff, good employees will not stand for lies, – and bad employees won’t care because they are lying too. This also applies to breaks, time off, days off, paid time off, and vacations. When your HR department hires employees.
Are Management Staffs Keeping The Promises Once They Leave The HR Office?
Training is about learning the job and the production line is about ”un-teaching” which can cause employees to become confused and frustrated. It is true, training is essential to maintaining quality staff; however, many businesses teach the job the ”right way” while in training, and once out of training, the employees are taught the ”practical way.” Everyone needs to be on the same page. Examining training practices and policies to determine differences with what will actually happen in production is essential to keeping everyone on the same page and setting expectations with new employees.
Punishment and rewards are essential and normal aspects of supervising employees. If management shows favoritism, it will undermine the entire staff. For instance, employees practicing social loafing behaviors should all have the same punishments. Additionally, reward systems should be equal to employees as well. Good employees will become bad employees if they discover that there are work avoidance techniques that ”everyone does” and ”gets away with.” If Joe can use ”bathroom breaks” to go out and smoke, then so will other employees. Be wary of managers who practice favoritism when handling work avoidance or reward programs. Policy and procedures start with management. If management does not respect the rules than no one else will.
Research and Planning:
Well, I have rambled on enough for the moment. Primarily, my recommendation is to go straight to the employees and find out what they think the problems are in their departments. Next, I recommend up-training for management and investigation that the problem does not stem from inconsistencies coming from supervisors and management. We cannot always assume it is the company, or the employee; however, we should be able to investigate and discover the roots of all problems just by asking the right questions.
Plan out the solution with help from management and employees:
Would the employees prefer to have additional breaks? Are the positions being rotated enough to keep their interest? Do they feel they have respect? What would production like to see change? There are some things we simply cannot do; however, it is often that the requests are simple ones. For instance, the West Corp. call center requires that employees always get a team lead (supervisor) before doing callbacks to customers; however, finding a team lead, which is not busy, is difficult and can cause lost time on the phones and failure to meet ”schedule adherence” requirements. A simple solution to increase employee satisfaction is to allow employees some freedom in making callbacks if ”necessary,” to avoid complications. As Cingular does not permit employees to have paper and pens at their desks, the only resolution is autonomy in callback privileges. While in some cases this may contribute to work avoidance, for the most part the little things go a long way.