Employees aren’t machines. It would be a great lapse in judgment to expect them to report several hours a day, do routine work, and deal with different kinds of people without eventually getting bored, disinterested, and lost. Demotivated employees affect the company’s performance. And as their boss, it falls on your shoulders to remedy this before it gets out of hand.

Here are 12 practical things you can do to bring back their enthusiasm.

1. Give clear instructions

Instead of asking them to give an excellent performance, which could be vague, ask for something more specific. Tell them the exact results you want, so they won’t feel frustrated if they don’t meet your expectations. Give complete instructions and make sure that you are both on the same page. This way, they will not be in a constant state of worry over whether or not they are doing an acceptable job.

2. Work while they are working

Being a boss does not translate to simply sitting in your office and ordering people around to do things for you. You must set a good example and show employees that just like them, you are working hard. Arrive at the office on time and do not make them do something you aren’t willing to do yourself, such as bringing home some work. If they see that you are doing your job, there is no reason for them to not do the same.

3. Boost their ego the right way

Assign a task to an employee because you are confident that he can do it. People value trust and they will do anything to not break that. Tell him straight that you specifically want him to do the job because you know that he can.

4. Tell them they are good at something

Instead of regularly pointing out the mistakes of an employee (which can slowly damage his self-esteem), why not make it a habit to compliment him once in a while? Let him know that he is good at something and that you acknowledge and appreciate that. Tell him straight, for instance, that you are thankful the company has a good marketer or a good decision-maker like him.

5. Reward them with little gifts

Gifts shouldn’t be as grand as a gift cheque or a brand new laptop. Little tokens of appreciation such as a heartfelt, handwritten note to a new employee who did a great job today goes a long way. Well-deserved special treatments, such as extending his vacation leave for two days if he aces the client presentation, can also motivate them more.

6. Provide constant reminders

Remind your staff that each one of them is as important as the others. His presence is needed and that every little thing he does, whether good or bad, will affect the company and its people. Sometimes, it only takes a small reminder for an employee to see that he is already falling short of what he is expected to do. Provide feedback for his performance, both positive and negative, so he will see the things he is still capable of the doing and the things that he should improve upon.

7. Host team-building activities

Conduct team building activities that will bind members of the company who work closely together. These activities are not only fun but serve as an escape from the monotony of work. Whether done outside of town or within the confines of the office, team building activities strengthen the bond between workmates. When they are enjoying each other’s company, they are more likely to enjoy work.

8. A clean work environment

A cluttered workplace not only looks unprofessional but can make employees feel bored and wish they were someplace else. Make the office conducive for working so that your staff is energized to continue what they are supposed to do. Workstations tailor-fit for the kind of work your team does, ergonomic and organized furniture, as well as complete office appliances and supplies should be prioritized.

9. A relaxed dress code

You have to consider that there are employees who are uncomfortable wearing corporate attire and would rather skip a day of work than repeat an outfit. If your company has a strict dress code, you can designate a wash day when they can trade formal office clothes for a more casual look.

10. Bring food for everyone

Food not only feeds the stomach but also the mind. You can occasionally bring food for everyone at the office as a sort of token for working hard the whole day. They are probably too tired or too busy to get something to eat, so treating them dinner or snacks can lighten up their load.

11. Talk to them

Your staff may be keeping hard feelings that hinder them from performing well at work, and the only way for you to find that out is by talking to them. Have a one-on-one meeting with an employee in an informal setting, so he will not feel intimidated. Find out what it is that’s contributing to his declining performance. You can even ask him to share selected personal tidbits about himself so you can both figure out how to deal with it. This will make him feel that you care about him and that you are willing to extend your help.

12. Set a goal

Setting a goal gives direction to the things you are currently doing. If employees are doing their tasks just for the sake of finishing it as part of their job description, then they are just mere robots. Set a goal like “Be the best in the restaurant business in this city” and make sure your employees know your vision for the company. Doing so will make them see a bigger purpose for their daily tasks, and would motivate them more to do their part to achieve this.

How do demotivated employees affect your company? Use these tips to motivate your staff and help them be the best in what they do. Don’t forget to pass this on!

Many of us find ourselves in motivational slumps that we have to work to get out of. 8 Steps To Continuous Self-Motivation

Featured photo credit: Business team high fiving in a circle in the officevia Shutterstock

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