Motivating the staff

With the New Year rapidly approaching, and after all the festivities are over, your thoughts might  be turning to how to get everyone in your organisation back to their desks and focused on the year ahead. Not only focused but excited and motivated too.

Presentations and talks are of course the ideal way to inspire an audience. This is your opportunity to encourage and motivate everyone.

I’ve been reading a couple of books on motivation just recently and it was interesting to recognise a rather old piece of psychological theory I came across years ago – it was proposed by Hackman & Oldman in the 1970’s. They said that there were five things that made a job satisfying. If you have these in mind when you’re composing your speech to your staff or team, then you should, in theory, be able to motivate them

What are the five things? Well they go like this; for a job to be satisfying you need:

  • Skill variety (be able to exercise different abilities like analytical as well as people skills)
  • Task variety (not to keep doing the same thing day in, day out)
  • Feedback (to know how you’re doing and what impact or effect you’re having)
  • Autonomy (be able to take some decisions yourself)
  • Meaningfulness (you must understand the purpose of what you’re doing)

It’s interesting that ‘money’ doesn’t occur on the list isn’t it!

Now, if you’re able to make your audience aware of where and how they fit in with company, with the vision you paint of the organisation’s future, this will address ‘meaningfulness’ – how you want them to be proactive not reactive, giving them a feeling of ‘autonomy’ then you’ve addressed two of the five. Providing feedback is easy. Put up charts in the canteen to show the company’s progress perhaps, or promise fortnightly feedback sessions. The last two, task and skill varieties are maybe harder to promise but if you can tackle those then you’ll have you staff getting out of bed in the morning with a spring in their step.

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