Individual Motivation: The Future of Employee Engagement
By Maria Marcakis and Samin Saadat
The motivation that drives us each is very intrinsic and individualistic. Employee engagement and culture building should be intrinsic and individualistic too. Here are four ways you can make this happen in your workplace:
1. Let Your Employees Lead the Way
Company culture and engagement has to come from your people and because culture is ever evolving, just like the people who work for you, let your people lead the way.
It’s much more organic to be enthusiastic about participating in something if it comes from a co-worker, rather than from the top, and the ideas will be more diverse and reflective of your employees if it comes from your employees.
2. It Takes Two to Tango
As an employer, you have to take on a supporting role and a lead role. 50/50 – That’s the ratio of employer vs. employee responsibility that will lead to success. Asking your employees to do all the work in employee engagement, and vice versa is not going to cut it. Changing your mindset to be 50/50 is the path to take if you want lasting change.
Ask your employees how you can support them in wanting to do X, and when you implement something as the employer, consistently ask how it’s going, and if it’s impactful.
It’s important to grow personally – it makes us feel alive, and energized. Progressive employers are leading the way by focusing on employee’s personal growth because they realize the value of an engaged employee, and one that grows, is inspired and can innovate.
Make your employee’s personal growth a priority. Ask them about their career goals, ways they want to up their game, and how you can support them in doing that. Although your employees are on payroll, they truly are your partners in business, and when they do well, so does your business. When you invest in your employees, they invest in your company.
4. Social Creatures
Support employees to cultivate the kinds of social interactions that work for them.
We’re all so different, and what motivates me doesn’t motivate you, so encourage your employees to try different things. Not everything is going to stick (and hopefully you make that part of your culture) but you have to try different things in order to find a winning combination.
Don’t just do a yearly potluck and call it a day. It’s so important to give some parameters to your employees and let them bring it, whatever it is.
There are so many opportunities to create deep engagement and culture that will pay dividends into the future, but that means having your employees as creative partners in culture building.
Maria Marcakis, B.A. has a diverse background in HR and admin, customer service, and data analytics and management. With over 17 years of experience, she has a passion for connection and employee engagement and is the co-founder of Jalapeno Employee Engagement.
Samin Saadat M.M., has worked closely with companies in employee engagement and has gained valuable insight into the employee mindset. She believes that people can reach their full potential if they are in the right conditions and have the right mindset. Samin is the co-founder of Jalapeno Employee Engagement.