5 Ways to Motivate Staff

As we all know, any business that wants to grow is going to be held back unless you have the right calibre of people. It is vital that the passion you have for your business is filtered through to every member of the team. A highly motivated team working towards a common goal is capable of achieving anything, so invest in your people and that investment will be returned many times over. One fundamentally important aspect is that you always remain consistent. Do not do something one week and then forget to do it the next. Below I detail five ways to motivate your staff, which is done on the basis that you have recruited correctly in the first place:



Each member of staff must have a clearly defined job specification and key performance indicators, which are understood by the member of staff and their line managers. Within this they should know what rewards are in place for overachievement and likewise the process for underachievement. The KPIs must be achievable and have a proven benchmark that is realistic and acceptable to all concerned.


I also believe in a sales environment where team individuals like to be competitive with each other. In my experience, most like their sales figures where everyone can see them, so you create a positive competitive edge to your sales team.



The regularity of 1:1 will vary but it is important that everyone has a formal 1:1 on a regular basis. In a sales driven environment, I prefer to see monthly 1:1s. These may only be 15 minute sessions, but it keeps everyone focused on achieving individual and company goals. With regard to more administrative type roles, I’d expect the 1:1 to be quarterly.


The formal 1:1 would be an appraisal which should be carried out annually, sometimes every six months, and many companies may form the basis of a payrise being considered. It is vitally important that these sessions are for all parties to participate in. Remember to listen more than you speak where appropriate.


Reward Success

I firmly believe that success breeds success. At the end of the day, we all aspire to be more successful and have people we look up too. Ensure that your successful people are rewarded whether that be a promotion, bonus, payrise, employee of the month awards, share options, personal development plans or a simple pat on the back. We all like to feel that we are wanted and add value to the company.


If staff know that the company recognises and rewards success then they will be continually looking to overachieve as it is in their and the company’s best interest. Remember that your people will deliver results, so you must ensure you give them all the available tools.



One of the most difficult things that companies find hard to get right is communication. At the end of the day, you are never going to please everyone, but you must have a framework to which communications are delivered consistently. How many companies have we been involved with where communication is non-existent? If you agree to a strategy at board level but do not communicate down to all levels then it simply will not work.


One thing I find amusing is how secretive some companies are about what they communicate. The most successful companies are normally open, transparent, and inclusive, so why be any different? If by being open you engage all your team from the outset, this can be very powerful as the whole team will take collective ownership and go the extra mile that can make a huge difference to your profitability.


Make your people feel special

If you can make your team feel like they are better than the competition, over time this makes such a difference to their performance. I firmly believe that my team of people were the best. Others may have disagreed, but that does not matter. To me they were the best and together we could achieve whatever we wanted. The company grew from £0m to £15m with the same core management team. We all grew as people as the company grew, but importantly it was the belief that we had for each other. Continually look for ways to improve yourself and your staff, and invest in specialised training courses where necessary.


Although individual pay and bonuses play an enormous part in this process, I also believe building a close team bond is critical. You need to have various team building sessions so everyone is considering the collective, not just the individuality. Again, in this type of scenario it is generally the sales teams that gain more, but wherever possible you need to also include others.


It is easier to do all of this when things are going well therefore it’s important to have a process that keeps these things happening consistently. Continually invest during good and bad times and you will reap the benefits. Be consistent and invest for the long-term, not just for the next few months.


In summary, the above will assist you in helping your staff be more motivated, but ideally you need to embed a culture where these things and many others really are second nature.

If you would like to discuss this article then either email davesymondson@gmail.com or phone 07976 846776


Please follow me on www.twitter.com/davesymondson and retweet this article.

Sally Beves says:

This is one area I find particularly tough, it’s a useful article for me to read. As a very small business with 2 part-time staff, I do struggle with ways to motivate my staff, when it works well it’s amazing and when it doesn’t it leaves me tearing my hair out with frustration! The one problem I have over and over again is how easily distracted they become. I do actually take time with appraisals etc.. and try to keep things inclusive. Thanks again, Sally

Dave says:

Dealing with People is never easy but keep at it. Regards Dave

Good piece on motivation which is one of those areas that seems easy in theory but is actually pretty tough in practice.

I think recognition is another huge factor in motivation too.

Dave says:

Thanks for the comment. Totally agree.
Regards Dave