Vacation Series: Recognizing and Motivating Staff


By Bob Mason (@BobMasonPalio)

Ah, summertime and the living is easy except when youre glued to the office. While winter finds us fighting colds and viruses, summer is a breeding ground for “anywhere-but-here-itis the days when youd rather be on the beach, in the mountains, at the park or participating in other outdoor recreational activities. When the weather is warm, its hard to remain motivated at work.

Yet for many industries especially pharma its a busy time of year. There are trade shows to plan, products to launch, conferences to hold and other activities that need to occur to keep the business moving forward.

Competitive pay is certainly a motivator behind why people work, but its not always the most important factor. For many employees, being engaged and satisfied on the job especially while the hot and humid days of summer parade past is just as important if not more so than the numbers on their paycheck.

While the heat waves continue, recognizing and motivating staff is critical in keeping employees not only productive, but happy to be at work.

How can you recognize and motivate staff?

Recognize that “thank you goes a long way. Whether its a pat on the back, a Dunkin Donuts gift card or acknowledgement of a job well done, people want to be valued for their contributions. When people feel appreciated for the work they do, their performance shines.

Social activities build morale and alleviate workplace tension. Everyone seems to be working harder with fewer resources, but that doesnt mean that work shouldnt or cant have an element of fun. Company picnics, after work cocktails or team-building activities can make for strong workplace chemistry. These activities should be encouraged all year long. Perhaps Palio and Zemoga will make their Halloween costume challenge an annual event!

Provide challenging and interesting work. Keeping people motivated and satisfied on the job requires appealing to both intrinsic and extrinsic needs – the kind of work employees do as well as the conditions of their work such as the culture, environment and relationships with their colleagues and supervisor. If you want to keep people motivated, make sure you create an environment that encourages ongoing communication and evaluate and set goals on a regular basis.

Encourage colleagues to support each other. Provide opportunities for coworkers to recognize one another for a job well-done, whether thats formally via a company newsletter or informally such as a shout-out on Twitter for an employee who has covered the desk of another enjoying a mid-season vacation.

Capitalize on the element of surprise. Some things require more planning than others, but bringing in ice cream for the team or ordering in a catered lunch is a quick way to boost spirits and goes a long way in showing people they are appreciated.

Encourage staff to take advantage of “Summer Fridays. Summer hours allowing employees to leave a few hours earlier during the warmer months can actually increase productivity by enabling employees to recharge. Its relatively low cost and offers high returns. Letting employees take a bit of a longer weekend is a great way to say thank you for the exceptional contributions made throughout the year.

Know a company that makes exceptional strides in recognizing, rewarding and motivating its staff? Tell us we want to know!



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