Posted: Nov 17 2015

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As team building specialists in the UK and Ireland, we are often asked the same few questions: “Why are my team so demotivated?”, “How can I motivate my staff?” and “What can I do to build momentum in my workforce when times are hard?” – If this sounds all too familiar, then please read on as we tackle one of the biggest causes of decreased productivity in the workplace.

Be Aware

As a manager, you need to be mindful of how your staff are feeling to manage them effectively. Demotivated staff are a lot less productive, often produce careless and unfinished work, have a tendency to turn up late and have a higher absence rate compared to motivated, happy staff. Team building activities that are both corporate and fun are ideal for boosting morale but first, we must determine why the workforce is feeling demotivated.

Jaded Workplace

This can be tricky, as different things motivate different individuals – these can be extrinsic factors such as money and location or intrinsic reasons like feeling valued and self-esteem. Disheartened workers will keep work-related communication to the bare minimum and exhibit a lack of interest and engagement in the workplace. Spotting the signs and knowing how to turn them around is what makes a great manager.

The Why’s and How’s

To deal with demotivated teams, we must first get to the cause root of these negative feelings. There are many reasons that an individual can feel lacklustre and uninspired, including job insecurity; feeling undervalued; lack of career goals; poor leadership; conflict; lack of development; and unrealistic workloads. Understanding your team’s wants and needs from a job role can go a long way to ensuring your staff are as motivated as you are. Remember, a happy workforce leads to higher productivity, happier clients and customers, which in turn can lead to bigger revenues.

Inspire and Develop

In order to address demotivation, one must get to know their staff. Communication is key – talk to them about hobbies and interests, their ambitions and dreams, what they aspire to and need from their job. Monitor your staff. Yearly appraisals are often not frequent enough to keep staff satisfied, on track and motivated. Similarly, monthly may well be too frequent and merely interrupt workflow. Quarterly reviews are a happy middle ground, and this tells your staff that you are invested in them and their development, as well as their workload. Close monitoring in this way will also give you a much better standing when negotiating pay reviews.

Determine destinations for each employee and set personal goals accordingly. Get feedback on their training needs and act on it. Record their achievements and celebrate them. Recognise when their workload is too much or too little, perhaps it is not challenging enough - and adjust according to your findings. These small steps show your staff that you believe in their abilities and that they are worth investing time in, generating a feeling of feeling valued and appreciated.
Assess yourself – are you demotivated? This attitude can be infectious in an office environment, especially when it comes from above. Are you inspiring and leading by example as well as managing? The delegation that improves the work life of your staff not only lightens your load but your staff will also take ownership and pride in these tasks.

Conflict in the workplace must be handled sensitively and firmly. Anonymous feedback can provide valuable insight into situations that would normally be left unresolved, so take this opportunity to address internal issues.
Know How

All of these concerns can be dealt with and addressed, but it is important to remember that you can’t give someone motivation, it must be inspired, cultivated and maintained. Support your staff and they will give you their best.

If you are still struggling to maintain enthusiasm and motivation in your place of work, or would like to reward your team for all their hard work, then is the answer to your problems. Cross department interaction and socialising outside of the office is integral to staff morale and gives you the opportunity to encourage great ideas and communication.
We have bespoke corporate days out that work fantastically alongside team building events. Contact us and see if Team Challenge Company can be of any help to you.

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