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Boosting Employee Morale

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Boosting employee morale creates satisfied, dependable and productive employees. Often a customer will choose to purchase your product or service based on the employee who represents that product or service, and the happier the employee, the more likely he is to attract customers.

What is Good Morale?

One of the secrets to a productive workforce—and therefore a successful business—is an elusive thing called good morale. What is good morale? It usually refers to how your employees feel about their jobs, you and your business. And that can directly affect your bottom line.

What Creates Good Morale at Work?

It’s a myth that good employees care only about money. Money is important, but there are many things that contribute to an employee’s morale. Interestingly, some are so fundamental that we tend to miss them completely. For instance, do your employees feel:

  • Treated fairly and respectfully?
  • Valued and appreciated?
  • Recognized and possibly even rewarded for their work?

It shouldn’t take you long to realize that if you wish to attract, recruit and retain good employees, fair and respectful treatment is a given. Employees who do not feel valued and appreciated will either contribute less effort as time goes on, or leave for greener pastures where they will be appreciated.
In addition, everyone likes to have achievements and efforts recognized. Even though personal satisfaction is usually generated from within, it is always more meaningful if someone else notices and shares the success through recognition and rewards.

Providing Recognition and Rewards

Rewards can motivate and encourage employees to contribute to their own success and that of your business. Now, we’re not talking big-ticket items like a car or trip to some exotic locale. On the contrary, employees are often delighted with a range of rewards that can be provided at little or no cost. Most importantly, ensure your program fits the culture and image of your company.
The most effective reward and recognition programs have five elements:

  1. Achievable: Set achievable standards. If it can’t be accomplished, it becomes a demotivator.
  2. Objective: Tell employees exactly what it takes to achieve a reward or recognition.
  3. Sensible: Include rewards that are logical motivators. If you are in your busy season, don’t award additional time off if your schedule can’t accommodate it for six months.
  4. Timely: Waiting too long to deliver a reward or recognition will lessen the impact.
  5. Useful: If possible, measure and reward something that helps to produce useful business results.

There are no firm rules about what to recognize, but many programs recognize the following:

  • Productivity/quality
  • Customer service
  • Peer recognition
  • Superior performance or extraordinary achievement
  • Safety
  • Length of service

Examples of Effective Employee Rewards

Midway through each busy season at the Pan Pacific Hotel in Vancouver, the senior management team would line the employee entrance, greeting each employee with coffee and donuts in the morning, or ice cream bars and soft drinks for the afternoon shift. It was a sincere gesture to say “thanks” and “we know it’s busy but hang in there!”
On Valentine’s Day, they would transform the employee cafeteria with linen-topped tables, and a special Valentine’s menu was served to all staff by the managers.
Other typical rewards include certificates, plaques, sports or cultural event tickets, time off or even a voucher for a free coffee and pastry. How about an informal thank-you party with cake and cookies between shifts on a Friday afternoon?

Remember, recognition and rewards need to be offered with sincerity and thoughtfulness. Recognizing employees is about giving thanks and credit where credit is due and making those employees feel valued and appreciated for a job well done.

Copyright © 2015 go2 Tourism HR Society. All Rights Reserved. Republished under license.

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