Sep 23, 2014

    Motivation tips for self and bosses

    BEING motivated at work is beneficial - for both the individual and the company. Motivated individuals are typically happier, more efficient and perform better than their unmotivated peers.

    So what can individuals and companies do to boost motivation levels at work?


    First, be clear why you have chosen this job and what you want to achieve out of it.

    Getting a salary is necessary to pay the bills. However, most people want more from work than just money.

    By thinking of the big picture, you can figure out how your day-to-day work impacts this long-term goal. For example, a good question to ask yourself is: "Where do I want to be in five to 10 years' time?"

    Once you have a clearer picture of the end goal, you will be more motivated to take the steps to get there.

    One way is to take on new assignments that stretch your abilities in the direction you wish to go.

    Doing meaningful work is a super-motivator. If you are not given the space and opportunities in your current role to challenge yourself, you may wish to look for another job which will allow you to learn the right skill sets.

    Alternatively, you can volunteer to do assignments outside your usual job scope. This has the added benefit of increasing the chances of getting noticed by someone else in the company, who will help groom you for the role you covet.

    Also, take the effort to engage colleagues and form stronger connections beyond just work. After all, there's nothing more fun than working with friends.

    Conversely, there's nothing more unpleasant than working in a team where you're constantly at loggerheads.

    Measure your successes and give yourself a pat on the back whenever you've done something right.

    If a situation arises where something went wrong, rather than beating yourself up over it, analyse the situation and look at what you could have done better.

    Most importantly, make sure you don't repeat the mistake.

    Remember to take enough time out, or risk burning out. This ranges from a short walk out of the office to grab a coffee, to enjoying vacation time with friends and loved ones. Such breaks relieve stress and refresh the mind.


    Business owners also play an important role in boosting motivation levels within the workplace, through rewarding and recognising employees.

    An employee-benefits system helps keep everyone happy and engaged.

    For example, Rewardz is an online portal that provides employees with some 150 corporate privileges in areas such as health, food and beverage, and lifestyle.

    In this way, Rewardz is able to negotiate the best corporate rates to benefit small and large companies.

    These privileges can be customised to the company, for example, getting on board F&B merchants in close proximity to the workplace, or selecting the types of merchants preferred by the employees.

    It is easy to use for both employees and human-resource teams, as it can be accessed any time via online or mobile platforms, and provides complete merchant management.

    Other reward systems may be put in place to incentivise employees to achieve high performance levels (such as hitting a sales target) or demonstrate certain wanted behaviour (such as good teamwork).

    However, business owners must take care not to alienate other employees who still do good work, albeit not at the level of the star performers.

    While many people enjoy monetary rewards, studies have shown that most people are motivated more by the environment they work in, people they work with and the work they do.

    So, do consider using both monetary rewards and other creative ideas, such as extra days off or a treat for the employee and his family at a Michelin-starred restaurant.

    Employee recognition is another motivational tactic an organisation can use. Positive feedback lets employees know that they are valued and appreciated.

    A good recognition programme should include both individuals and teams, and the recognition should come from the organisation, the employee's direct manager and his peers.

    Like rewards, recognition can be used to reinforce good performance and behaviour. Recognition can take many forms, including verbal and written praise, new job opportunities and awards.

    Having highly motivated employees does wonders for creating a stable and efficient workforce that works well as a team. The more motivated the team is, the more successful the business will be.

    The writer is a co-founder of Rewardz, a Singapore-based company that aims to help organisations build a motivated and happy workforce. Rewardz is incubated by NUS Enterprise.