How to motivate your staff

Ensuring your staff are motivated and stay that way is an important part of running a business. This guide looks at what skills and tools to use to make sure you keep your staff involved and happy.

Why is motivation important?

Motivation is important because even at the most basic level, it costs more to replace staff than to keep them. Staff liked to feel needed and respected and keeping them happy means they'll stay with you for much longer. Remind yourself that even in tough times; you need to keep motivating your staff high on your list of priorities.

  • Make staff feel respected
  • Check on your staff regularly

Make people feel valued

Hopefully, your staff are performing well and helping drive your business forward. In that case, you should be letting them know how much you value them on a regular basis. Whether you tell them or buy them a slice of cake both work equally well.  It shows you've thought of them and if you can afford to splash out on weekly drinks - then do so. If you're staff enjoy socialising with you as much as working with you, then you're doing something right.

  • Incentivise your staff by with social events
  • Let your staff know how much you value them

Lead by example

It's important that you lead by example when dealing with staff, if you expect to your team to stay late, then you should stay late too. Likewise, if you don't want staff rolling in at 11 am on a Monday morning, then make sure you're at your desk bright and early. It's not just about working hours, though, show you staff respect and you'll (hopefully) get it back. They'll also pick up on the way you speak to people and act in different circumstances, so make sure you're behaving how you'd like them to.

  • Don't expect your staff to do what you won't
  • Have firm leadership qualities

Training and personal development

Investing in your staff is important, not only will it mean you're getting the best and most up to date in the business but they'll be grateful for being able to develop under your watchful eye. Make sure you fully research courses to send your staff on to get the full potential. It's also important to get feedback from staff on how they feel the courses benefitted them.

  • Set aside money to spend on training courses
  • Fully research courses
  • Get feedback from staff


Communicating with your staff should be high on your list of priorities. Most staff like a visible boss - one they know they can go to with problems. It's important that you hold frequent job chats to make sure they're happy, getting on ok and aren't confused about anything. Aside from this, make sure you communicate with your staff on a daily basis. Saying good morning and goodnight are simple motivational tools but can make a world of difference.

  • Have regular chats with your staff
  • Communicate daily - however insignificant
  • Make yourself accessible

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