by Sam at Management 3.0
We talk about motivation a lot at Management 3.0, but today we thought it would be interesting to discuss how to keep long-time employees engaged. In today’s culture where people don’t stay at jobs longer than a few years, this might sound like an odd thing to focus on, however there are still plenty of ‘old-timers’ in companies and it’s important that they feel engaged and stay motivated. So what can you do?
Here are five things that will help keep long-term employees excited about work
#1: Give people something to look forward to: If you’ve been doing something for a long time it can become monotonous and feel like groundhog day and this results in boredom and stagnancy and disengagement. People need to have something to look forward to, something different, dynamic and something that makes them feel alive. This could be introducing a new event for employees at work, a new perk, a new way of doing things, or even a competition to partake in.
#2: Keep people stimulated with knowledge: People need to feel like they’re learning and growing. That can come in the form of offering courses, workshops, investing in education that employees want to do, or it can come in other forms. Learning can mean making extra time to sit with a colleague and explain a new of doing something. Going over their work and pushing them to think differently about how they approached an issue. There are many ways to stimulate people through knowledge, the important thing is to make sure the options are available and people are willing to put in the time to help colleagues grow.
#3: Make them feel relevant: Longer-term employees can sometimes feel outdone by or overshadowed by younger and newer staff. It’s important to recognize the generational differences in employees and also the advantages that each age group brings. Make sure people feel like they matter and like their opinions and viewpoints count. You can do this by simply taking time to listen to people, ask for their input and then implement things they say or create change based on their feedback. People also feel relevant when they feel like they’re in charge of something, when they’re empowered to take the lead on a project or a new initiative or even a meeting.
#4: Increase recognition: Recognizing people doesn’t have to be costly. It can be as simple as writing a thank you note to a colleague to thank them for a job well-done on a recent assignment. It can also include giving bonus points or money, depending on what your rewards system is. Ultimately, people want to be seen and they want to feel like their work matters and that people are noticing it. Little gestures go a long way in doing that.
#5: Lead by example, create a vision people want to be a part of: People take their cues from the bosses and ultimately the best way to keep people around is to get them excited about the vision and make them feel like they’re part of something greater than themselves. This starts with the company culture, and those spearheading things. Create an inviting culture, one that is encouraging, optimistic, encourages, growth and one that clearly connects people to the company’s purpose.