Motivation at the workplace

Are you wondering how to find motivation at work? Or how to motivate others in order to create a more productive work environment? Here we will take a look at the topic of work motivation for office employees.

The importance of motivation at work

The important role of motivation in an organization and for employee performance is well observed. Staff and managers who are motivated to do their best work actively aim to achieve the goals of the companies and organizations they are part of.

The lack of motivation in team members can lead to low performance, reduced productivity, and sabotage companies and organizations from within.

Factors of motivation at work

If you are wondering how to increase motivation at work for all staff members, then consider the factors and conditions outlined below. Compare the list to your organization and think of what you can add to your operation.

  • A culture of idea-sharing and collaboration
  • Focus on creativity and innovation
  • Establishing trust and ownership of duties
  • Giving staff training and resources to achieve goals
  • Identification of conflict and immediate resolution
  • Work that aligns with the individuals’ professional goals
  • Periodic work evaluation and acknowledgment of good performance
  • Reward system for outstanding accomplishments
  • Giving staff access to anonymous feedback platform
  • Encouraging staff to pursue additional knowledge and education

What causes a lack of motivation at work

There are many factors that can demotivate a person to do their job. Here we have listed some of the most common ones. Go through the list and think of what might be the issue with the people you work with. Approach them carefully and discuss what is bothering them. Try to come up with actionable steps toward improvement.

  • Staff members feel underpaid
  • Lack of company direction and progress
  • Lack of trust and confidence in the management
  • Chronic communication problems
  • No access to useful tools and resources
  • Workplace harassment
  • Personal problems
  • “Toxic” work environment

Extrinsic motivation vs intrinsic motivation

There are two main categories of motivation that are important when it comes to employee performance. Evaluating the intrinsic and extrinsic motivation of staff can help you work toward increasing their overall motivation to work and do a better job.

  1. Extrinsic motivation comes from the rewards that workers receive for doing their job. This includes salary, benefits, and additional rewards such as bonuses, vacations, wellness programs, and amenities at the workplace. Extrinsic motivation can also come from the punishment and negative consequences that workers will have to face if they fail at doing their job.
  2. Intrinsic motivation is highly desirable because it comes from internal, personal factors. Examples include working hard to ensure job retention, providing for loved ones, believing in the mission of the organization, and working towards a greater cause that the worker believes in.

Inspiration is a factor that contributes to intrinsic motivation. Inspired individuals have a personal connection with their work. They are more productive, creative, and have higher satisfaction with their job.

Work motivation vs work ethic

Work ethic is the idea that working diligently pays off and builds character. Could it be that you are confusing your lack of motivation with gaps in your work ethic?

Here’s a quick reality check: there are people with a strong work ethic who are able to perform their duties, yet they might feel unmotivated on the inside. Do you fall into this category?

In case all your work conditions are to your satisfaction and you still feel unmotivated to work then perhaps you are dealing with work ethic issues or you suffer from chronic procrastination.

How to find motivation at work

If you are unmotivated because you think that you are underpaid, then you have your answer right there. At least when the issue is money, then your options are pretty clear. You can:

  • Ask for a raise
  • Look for other job opportunities
  • Look for ways to make some money on the side

Then again, a paycheck isn’t all there is to a job. And sometimes finding the motivation to work and get things done needs to come from a very deep and powerful place.

#1. The story of your company

Maybe your company has an interesting story. Maybe not. But stories are a powerful tool. Stories inspire people to change the world. So go back to that moment lost in the history of the world and remind yourself how your company came to be. When things were kind of unclear and scary.

Remind yourself and those around you that your company started from nothing. And now it is something. And keep in mind that you are a part of this story and you have the power to continue it.

#2. The potential ahead of you

Are you staying with this company? Good. Then you need to think of its future because it is your future as well.

Are you at a happy place right now? Probably not given that you are reading this. Well, that’s good. This means that you are building that energy necessary to make big, important changes for a better future.

#3. A sense of belonging

Creating a sense of belonging in your organization can be difficult to achieve. It is one of those elusive, abstract concepts that can come out as empty words when you really think of it carefully.

A sense of belonging is something best achieved on a team level. This is something that needs to come from the people who are part of said teams. Those individuals who are able to unite the rest around them and make everyone feel welcomed and appreciated. You can either try to be that person for your team or do your best to create a work environment that allows this ‘sense’ to emerge.

#4. The freedom to create

Having any sort of freedom and flexibility at work is a great benefit in itself. But some people have the need to express themselves and find motivation in the creative process. If this is important to you, then make sure to communicate it with your manager. They will respect you for being honest and appreciate you for being proactive.

#5. Mastery of the trade

Perhaps you are looking to make a name for yourself in your line of work. Or maybe you want to remain in history as one of the greatest? Does your current occupation allow you to achieve such levels of mastery? Think about what can your company do for you and your professional growth.

Do you need better instruments and equipment? Maybe ask them to pay for a couple of courses and sign an agreement that you won’t leave the company for a certain period of time afterwards? Show the people above you that you are a valuable asset and that investing in you will have beneficial returns for the company.

#6. Company mission

What is the mission of your company? How is your company making the world a better place? The answers to these questions might be scary for some. You can find the motivation to work and be more productive knowing that you are contributing to something bigger than you. Sure, having a vision for a better future is among those abstract, romantic ideas but it can be a powerful way to motivate people.

#7. Additional benefit

Most modern companies offer all kinds of benefits to their workers. Extra vacation days, medical and dental coverage, travel opportunities, gym memberships. It’s all about increasing the lifestyle satisfaction of workers.

And these extra benefits could be very motivating for some people. Including you. And if your company is working to bring such benefits to you, then you at least know that they are willing to invest in the happiness of their employees.

Related Office Topics

Rewards

The rewards of working are crucial for work motivation. Adequate compensation is vital for a person’s work motivation and ethic. Additional rewards are always welcome but they are an extrinsic motivational factor that provides short-term gratification. They can shift the focus of the individual towards short-term rewards

View Rewards Topics


Goal setting

Setting goals and having a company direction is essential for personal and team motivation in the workplace. Goals need to be set based on research and the capabilities of the staff. Unrealistic goals can demotivate workers and lead to negative consequences. Setting the right goals and establishing a clear path to achieve them can be an indirect motivational factor for good work.

View Goal Setting Topics


Gamification

Gamification is a technique that turns work into a game or gives it game-like qualities. Some gamification methods involve the use of competitive elements between staff and teams. However, those can have negative consequences if the work ethic of individuals is low. Gamification can help make work more interesting and additionally motivate workers, especially if additional rewards are introduced.

View Gamification Topics


Work engagement

Work engagement is dedication individuals have to their work. High work engagement is a desirable factor by organizations because it promotes good communication and high productivity. Staff members who are engaged in their work are able to immerse themselves in their projects and work with passion and creativity toward their goals.

View Work Engagement Topics


Key Takeaways

  • Finding the motivation to work happens on a personal level.
  • Find out what are the things that unmotivate you in your job.
  • You need to understand very well what are the things that motivate you to be productive.
  • Don’t be afraid to talk to your coworkers about your motivation to work, they probably experience the same things.
  • Craft your personal “motivation toolbox” to quickly get the inspirations you need for a productive day.