14 Do’s and Don’ts To Motivate Employees

Is your team fully engaged to give their best, day in and day out? Studies show that employee engagement derives from three important factors:

  1. Alignment of the employee with the goals and vision of the company.
  2. Faith of the employee in the competence of management and their commitment to realise the goals and vision.
  3. Trust in their direct supervisor that he or she will support his or her people and help them to succeed.

It has often been said that employees don’t leave businesses – they leave leaders.

Increasing positive manager behavior and reducing negative manager behavior will go a long way towards improving employee engagement. When your talented employees are engaged, they are able to perform and build and improve your  business.

Here are some ways to improve staff engagement, and be an all round better manager:

1. DON’T get angry

“Getting angry is easy. Anyone can do that. But getting angry in the right way in the right amount at the right time, now that is hard.” (Mark Twain) Anger does not belong as part of your management skills.

2. DON’T be cold, distant, rude or unfriendly.

Especially in difficult times, employees take cues from their leaders and need to hear from them. Remember, your team will judge you by your action, moods, and behaviors, not by your intent.

3. DON’T send mixed messages to your employees so that they never know where you stand.

Keep your message simple, focused and prioritised. Too many messages and initiatives just confuse and alienate people.

4. DON’T BS your team.

This includes saying things that you don’t believe in. This includes hiding information and just plain lying. By the time each of us is in our early 20′s, we have all developed very well-tuned BS detectors.

5. DON’T act more concerned about your own welfare than anything else.

Your success will come through the success of your team.

6. DON’T avoid taking responsibility for your actions.

You are the boss. As such, you are accountable and the buck stops with you. You are trying to develop accountability throughout your company. So, lead by example.

7. DON’T jump to conclusions without checking your facts first.

Imagine this: You start screaming at an employee of who has missed an important meeting that morning. After several minutes, the employee responds “I apologise and should have contacted you. But, I just got back from the hospital as my mother has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.”

8. DO what you say you are going to do when you are going to do it.

There is no better way to communicate the message that you are accountable for your promises and that everyone in your company should be accountable as well.

9. DO be responsive (return phone calls, emails).

As a manager, your team can be considered to be your customer.
You want your team to punctually respond back to customer requests, so you should do the same.

10. DO publicly support your people.

Your disagreements and disappointment with your employees can be communicated later and in private. Nothing appears so hollow as your attempt to blame your team for failures.

11. DO admit your mistakes …

…and take the blame for failures.

12. DO recognize your team.

Never underestimate the power of simple recognition for a job well done.

13. DO ask and listen.

“The manager of the future will know how to ask rather than how to tell.” (Peter Drucker)

Some of the most dangerous words for a manager to ever say include: “But, you just don’t understand…” “Because I said so…”

14. DO smile and laugh.

Have some fun. But, be genuine; programmed fun and faked laughter is worse than doing nothing.

When appropriate, laugh at yourself; it will humanize you.

What’s next?

  1. Join our Kick-Ass Tradies Facebook Group, for access to trade business specific conversations, tips and resources, plus a like-minded community of tradies.
  2. Book a 15-minute Game Plan Call with Andy, owner of Dr. DRiP plumbing and co-founder of Lifestyle Tradie, to clarify your priorities and get clear action steps.