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Myths About Employee Motivation

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The topic of motivating employees is extremely important to managers and supervisors. Despite the important of the topic, several myths persist -- especially among new managers and supervisors. Before looking at what management can do to support the motivation of employees, it's important first to clear up these common myths.

1. Myth #1 -- "I can motivate people"
Not really -- they have to motivate themselves. You can't motivate people anymore than you can empower them. Employees have to motivate and empower themselves. However, you can set up an environment where they best motivate and empower themselves. The key is knowing how to set up the environment for each of your employees.

2. Myth #2 -- "Money is a good motivator"
Not really. Certain things like money, a nice office and job security can help people from becoming less motivated, but they usually don't help people to become more motivated. A key goal is to understand the motivations of each of your employees.

3. Myth #3 -- "Fear is a d**n good motivator"
Fear is a great motivator -- for a very short time. That's why a lot of yelling from the boss won't seem to "light a spark under employees" for a very long time.

4. Myth #4 -- "I know what motivates me, so I know what motivates my employees"
Not really. Different people are motivated by different things. I may be greatly motivated by earning time away from my job to spend more time my family. You might be motivated much more by recognition of a job well done. People are not motivated by the same things. Again, a key goal is to understand what motivates each of your employees.

5. Myth #5 -- "Increased job satisfaction means increased job performance"
Research shows this isn't necessarily true at all. Increased job satisfaction does not necessarily mean increased job performance. If the goals of the organization are not aligned with the goals of employees, then employees aren't effectively working toward the mission of the organization.

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Topic starter Posted : 10/04/2010 6:07 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

Money motivates :: Of course, if you pay some enough money, they will do almost any job. And when you give bonuses to reward past behavior, the recipients are usually very happy (unless they were expecting a larger bonus). The staff does a better job following the glow that accompanies added money.

However, studies find this happiness is short-lived. Within six months, individuals have difficulty recalling that bonus and it does not seem to have the same impact it did within the first few weeks or months of receiving it. That’s because money, in and of itself, will not continuously motivate individuals.

It’s the recognition and status that are the true motivators for the increased output. Take for example, the high tech salesperson who sold more product than anyone else in the department. The boss rewards that employee with a bonus. Everyone knows who the bonus recipient is, and she is proud of her accomplishments--the high earner gains recognition from colleagues and clients. Recognition and status are two key sources of motivation. So while money can serve to motivate, its effects are often short term at best.

What should you do? Set up situations that allow the employee to feel a sense of accomplishment. Employees respond most to opportunities for achievement, recognition, growth, job enrichment and job enlargement.

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Posted : 15/04/2010 3:15 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

1)Acknowledge contributions. You can make a huge difference in employee morale simply by taking the time to recognize each employee’s contributions and accomplishments, large or small. Be generous with praise.
2)Provide incentives. Offer people incentives to perform well, either with something small like a gift certificate or something more substantial such as a performance-based bonus or salary increase.
3)Honor your promises. Getting people to give their all requires following through on promises. If you tell an employee that he or she will be considered for a bonus if numbers improve or productivity increases, you’d better put your money where your mouth is.
4)Provide career coaching. Help employees reach the next level professionally by providing on-site coaching. Bring in professionals to provide one-on-one counseling, which can help people learn how to overcome personal or professional obstacles on their career paths.
5)Match tasks to talents. You can improve employee motivation by improving employee confidence. Assign individuals with tasks you know they will enjoy or will be particularly good at.

Have a nice day

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Posted : 17/04/2010 6:54 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation


First - The money involved is generally insignificant on a larger level. In most cases, the money used as a motivator is not sufficient to represent a major alteration to one's status or lifestyle. Employees understand the range of income associated with their employment and naturally adjust to function on that level of income. Although the thought of a few extra bucks may be handy, they recognize that the pay increase won't really create a significant change. A line worker, for instance, is not going to suddenly start earning management money due to a monetary motivational inducement. They payouts might be quite generous, but in overall terms, they are not enough to inspire significant change.

Second - Although most employees will expect to see earnings go up along with time spent working for an employer, money may not really get at the heart of why someone is working at a particular job--or why they enjoy it. The money is necessary to pay the bills, but beyond that, it is of secondary importance to many employees.

Third - Money can be seen as an insulting way of encouraging employee motivation. Employees may look at the practice as a classic "carrot and stick" inducement and may be turned off by the idea that they must jump through a series of new hoops in order to earn more when the money is, apparently, already available. If the money involved is relatively insignificant in real or perceived terms, some employees may be offended by the notion of being "rewarded" with a pittance.


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Posted : 17/04/2010 10:39 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

Whether workers should be treated as thinking human beings depends on the type of work they do. For example, it is useless -- even counterproductive -- for employees doing routine, highly standardized work to be involved in decisions about the work.

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Posted : 19/04/2010 5:00 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

You people have good knowledge about employee motivation. This is really nice tips for employee motivation. My vote goes to "Money motivates" as per my understanding this is the best motivation for every employee. Every one need money and when he/she get good reward of their work will be good for both employee and employer also.

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Posted : 28/12/2010 4:06 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

Everyone has motivation - their own reasons for moving. What slows people down or stops them altogether is not lack of motivation, but the presence of obstacles.

Rather than waste energy artificially inflating their motivation, people do much better if they identify the obstacles and figure out how to get rid of them.

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Posted : 29/12/2010 3:48 pm
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

lol fear is to instill conformity not motivation. if you need drones to work for you in a set of prescribed task, then fear might work. Otherwise, great articles.

Posted : 01/01/2011 9:26 am
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Re: Myths About Employee Motivation

Giving your employees words of encouragement and acknowledging them when they do a good job are great ways to motivate them.

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Posted : 06/01/2011 8:36 am