For Happier Employees, Here’s How To Increase Motivation And Engagement

The post is developed in partnership with BetterHelp.

When people go to work, they’re still people with the same motivations and drives we all experience as human beings. Yet the business environment isn’t always set up to support some of our most basic human drives. Over the last decade, amazing advancements in computers and technology have provided some dramatic innovations. Yet employee engagement in the workplace is at low levels across a wide range of industries. And many organizations are experiencing higher turnover and lower levels of reported job satisfaction from their employees.

But there are ways to help people feel more motivated amidst the unavoidable project changes, clashes with coworkers, and demands of the workplace. By addressing the underlying human needs of your team, it’s possible for a company to increase employee motivation and improve performance, and retention.

In this article, we’ll look at some of the challenges driving employee disengagement in the workforce and strategic ways to address them. By understanding more about the effective ways to boost employee engagement, it’s possible to start putting a plan into action for your team. 

Ask Your Employees What They Need To Feel More Motivated

Let’s start our discussion with one of the most important ways to increase employee motivation: Ask your employees what they think. Would they like more flexibility to work from home? Do they need more paid time off (PTO) to achieve a better work-life balance? Would being included in more decision-making help them to feel more engaged?

Some companies struggle to understand why they have such high employee turnover and low engagement in the workplace. If you’re trying to make your employees feel more motivated, then it’s important to ask them what they need to feel motivated to do their best work.

In addition to being one of the simplest, it’s also one of the most effective ways to increase employee motivation. Simply feeling heard and seen can be enough to improve employee morale and get things on the right track. It’s also a valuable tool in understanding the path an organization needs to take in beginning the process of increasing employee engagement and motivation at work. Let’s explore some additional strategies.

Avoid The Pitfalls Of Creating An Always-On Work Environment

With the advent of smartphones, we’ve all gained the ability to read and respond to emails and work messages from our jacket pocket anywhere in the world. Whether we’re at the grocery store, an airport, or on vacation at a beach resort in an exotic locale, we’re still reachable. But not being able to ever feel like we’re off-the-clock can have damaging effects on our mental and physical wellbeing.

People need to unplug, and truly get away from their Slack chats, messaging, and email in order to truly feel rested mentally and physically. Without the ability to fully disconnect, employees can experience lower job satisfaction, more work-family conflict, and burnout. Yet in a recent survey, 54% of employees said they don’t disconnect completely from work, even on vacation.

The top reasons employees gave for not disconnecting include inadequate paid time off, their toxic work culture, and fear of being punished with delays in their career advancement. Here there are opportunities for a company to examine their PTO policies. It’s also an opportunity to examine whether there is a toxic manager who is still contacting employees on vacation or giving them a reason to feel the need to be “always on.” Having honest conversations about career advancement and creating a culture that supports and promotes people taking time off can also lead to improvements in engagement.

Support The Mental well-being of Your Employees

When people feel like they’re being cared for and valued, they may feel more content with their work environment and experience fewer health issues – even amidst the daily challenges in a hectic business world. Studies have shown that mental health programs in the workplace can help enhance overall health and deliver cost savings for the organization sponsoring the program.

Often changing environmental culture and removing toxic coworkers can be a long-term process. One of the quickest potential ways to enhance your employees’ sense of wellbeing is to create an allowance for mental health spending or to collaborate with an online mental wellness service offering access to certified counseling professionals.

It’s easier than ever before for people to engage in therapy online, while still receiving many of the same benefits of in-office therapy. For many organizations, a company-sponsored therapy program offers a faster, more convenient way for their employees to receive mental health services. And that can help employees feel more engaged and cared for in the workplace.  

Enhance Their Sense Of Autonomy In The Workplace

Almost no one wants to feel bossed around at every turn like a child. Wanting to feel in control of our life is a basic human drive, yet some workplaces prefer to enact strict black-and-white rules and regulations that leave little room for personal autonomy in the workplace.

Understandably, this can feel tricky to some employers who feel uncomfortable giving their employees more control. It can seem to run counter to the job of an employee to follow the direction of their manager, yet there are potential rewards to be gained by increasing the sense of autonomy you give to your employees.

There are a number of ways to increase this sense of control employees have at work. Including people in decision-making processes instead of dictating to them can help them feel more in control. If the organizational structure doesn’t allow for more collaboration, giving people more flexibility in the way and place they work can also serve to increase their sense of control. Whether that means having a flexible work-from-home policy or creating more fluid policies for their daily work hours, people tend to feel more engaged in a workplace where they have more control over their day.

In Conclusion

When examining the links between what outstanding companies do and how engaged their employees feel, there are a number of evidence-backed steps that can be taken. Through research and studies, proven ways have been shown that are likely to lead to improved employee motivation. But the process of getting employees more motivated begins with leadership becoming more engaged in creating more supportive and engaging workplaces.

Sanjeev Kumar
Sanjeev Kumar
Myself Sanjeev Kumar a dynamic writer and digital marketing expert, currently contributing his expertise to OurNetHelps. With a passion for crafting compelling content and a deep understanding of the ever-evolving digital landscape i dedicated to creating informative and engaging materials that help businesses thrive online.

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