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How to motivate your employees

Now that you are a manger, you are in charge of several different types of people. Each of your employees has a different personality and responds differently to situations. How can you motivate your employees to work harder at their job? First, you need to gain the respect and trust of your employees. Here are a few tips you can follow to gain your employees trust:
- Be ready to listen to the employee's questions and concerns about the job.
- Treat your employees with respect, not as inferior people.
- Be polite to your employees.
- Recognize and reward your employees for a job well done.
- Ask for your employees' input in making decisions that affect their work.
- Gradually build trust in your employees by giving them additional responsibility or extra latitude in making decisions.
- Treat all your employees fairly and impartially.
- Be firm, but not tyrannical, when making decisions and disciplining employees.
- Apologize or admit to employees when you were wrong.
- Give employees credit where due.
- Express genuine concern for employees' problems.
- Keep your employees informed about work-related matters.

Once you have proven that you are trustworthy; people will begin looking to you for motivation. Leadership by example is the best principle you can remember. Enthusiasm is contagious and if you come in every day excited about your job, others will feel the same way.

Take time to recognize your employee's hard efforts. If they work hard on a project for weeks and don't gain any recognition, their enthusiasm for their job will decline. You will find yourself struggling with employees on a daily basis if you don't take the time to show that you appreciate their efforts.

Listen to your employees. A big mistake many companies make is motivating employees with money. This strategy isn't always effective. Some people are actually less motivated by money or a larger office. Take the time to listen your employees and see what motivates them. A simple "thank-you" can go a long way for many people.

Make a list of each employee and have them write down 3 to 5 things that motivate them. This way you can gain a better understanding of what they are seeking for job fulfillment versus the company procedures for employee motivation. Meet with each of your employees and discuss what they think is important and what really motivates them. After you have done this, you can take some time and write down a little information about each employee and how you can help to motivate them in their job.

Reward good behavior or work performance when you see it, or soon after you see it. Try not to let hard work go unrecognized. If you fail in this category, many employees will not feel appreciated and will become disgruntled workers. Every company should have a "reward" program in place. Working on the employment relationship can be done by simple steps. Think of what behaviors you want to recognize and what you would like to give as a reward. Perhaps your company can do a monthly drawing for those employees with the least errors or something similar. The last step is how you would like to present the reward to the employee. Usually giving it to the employee in front of their co-workers builds their self-esteem and also makes the other employees respect them for their hard work and accomplishment.

Be up front with your employees about the company goals for the month and how you can all work together to achieve them. Give them a reason to work hard and remember to be enthusiastic!

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