A common challenge leaders and managers face in today’s work place is the question of “How do I keep my team motivated?” Over the past seventy years motivation has been the topic of much research. From Maslow’s needs-hierarchy to Skinner’s reinforcement theory, the question has remained the same. “How do we as leaders create a feeling of interest, a reason for doing something or behaving in a certain way?”
Many factors have been taken into consideration when looking at motivation theory. However, the general conclusion has been, motivating factors vary from one person to the other. Something that highly motivates one individual may be of no concern to another individual. None-the-less, there is one simple motivating factor that seems to be fairly uniform in the work place. This factor is feedback.
In most facets of life people seek to feel valued, and it should come as no surprise that the work place is not an exception to this phenomenon. Thus, leaders must know how to properly bestow feelings of value in their employees through the use of feedback.
In order for feedback to be effective the message must be:
- genuine, and
Let’s now look at an example in the work place. Jane Smith is a valuable asset to your team. She is always on time, exteriorly creative, gives exceptional customer service, and has great employee relation skills. You, as Jane’s manager, recognize Jane’s exceptional work and determine she should receive a “pat on the back”. How do you insure that this “pat on the back” is indeed effective feedback?
Feedback can be a very powerful motivator as long as it is administered effectively. Although each industry is going to be slightly different it is still beneficial for employees to know their work is noticed and appreciated. When feedback is used motivation will increase thus, so will productivity.
To your success!