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Category: Work Life

8 Tips to Motivate — and Retain — Your Best Employees

A fact of business is that you can’t always offer pay raises, bonuses and other cash benefits to keep employees happy. So how do you retain your best talent? For many professionals, quality of life is equally important to financial gain. Creating an unparalleled work environment will help them feel that they are right where they want to be. Try these 8 tips to keep your best people feeling productive and motivated.

Address Staff by Name.

People want to be recognized. Make it a priority to learn your employees’ names, and consistently address them by name. It’s demoralizing when a boss doesn’t seem to care enough to know who you are. Take the time to learn that he’s Michael, not “Mike”, and she’s Jess, not “Jenny.”

Praise Liberally.

People want their efforts to count for something. Giving public recognition at staff meetings, or a shout-out in the employee newsletter is a great way to boost morale. Remember that while it’s great to point out team efforts, most people crave individual recognition as well.

Provide Growth Opportunities.

Help employees focus their career path by offering one-on-one training or mentoring sessions. Reward hard working team players with unique job titles. Job titles are very important to your employees as they help them identify themselves professionally, and garner respect and praise from friends, family — and from clients and co-workers.

Create Leaders.

Recognize your hard working staff by letting them embrace a leadership role. Have them present at a company meeting, take on additional responsibilities, or head up a special project.

Foster Team Spirit.

Make the time to gather employees together for some fun. Winning a simple reward like a Leave-an-Hour-Early-Pass in a playful team-building competition can be a real point of pride. Post photos of your staff spending this time together on the company’s social sites — showing off the culture you’re creating will attract great new employees, too.

Cultivate a Great Environment.

Keeping work spaces clean, appealing and comfortable makes a difference! Employees are more motivated to come to work each day if they enjoy the environment they’re spending their working hours in.

Offer Casual Dress Days.

Employees love to dress down. Offering them opportunities to do so can brighten their spirits and give them something to look forward to. Another fun idea is to have dress down theme days like costumes on Halloween or team jerseys Friday before the Super Bowl.

Invest in Social Gatherings.

Company picnics, holiday parties, staff softball games and bowling lunches help your team get to know you and each other better. This kind of bonding helps people learn how to communicate with each other and find common ground to achieve larger goals and move the whole team, and your company, forward.