Employee Motivation: Keeping employees aligned with work

Each employee has a different motivating factor for working his or her current role. Whether it’s passion for the job or salary, there is a driving force that is motivating them to perform. What happens when that motivation wears off? It was once believed that money was the motivator, if you made a hefty salary then you’d be happy. However, over the years that theory has been dismissed in terms of what really motivates employees.

Maslow’s hierarchy of needs includes five motivational needs, shown as levels in a pyramid. A person must satisfy the lower level needs before progressing to the next. They are listed from bottom to top as Basic, Safety, Social, Esteem Needs and Self Actualization. Let’s focus on Level four, which is Esteem needs- a desire to feel important. Everyone has a need to feel valued at home and work. Therefore, employees want to feel appreciated at work and when they do it makes them more motivated to work above and beyond expectations.  One specific way to make employees feel valued is to recognize them. When organizations create a culture of recognition, employee motivation and morale improves.  Some measurable ways to recognize employees include the following:

  1.  Acknowledging employees in department’s newsletter, intranet site or staff meeting
  2. Expressing an interest in employee’s career development goals
  3. Finding ways to reward department-specific performance

 Following this basic principle of recognition will allow you to see your workforce in ways you never have. The sky should be the limit when it comes to making your employees feel valued and appreciated. They will show up and out in ways you never imagined. Try it today!


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