When you do have small gaps in business during the day? As a manager, those times are excellent opportunities to engage with your employees.
Here are 5 things you can do to motivate your staff:
- Genuinely ask how they are: If they feel you care; they will care. By understanding what what is important to your employees, you can learn what motivates their work. There is a fine line between personal and TOO personal, but you as a manager CAN manage that. (Note: Ask to know enough, don’t ask to get involved.)
- Buy them lunch: Don’t just give them lunch; sit with them, talk to them, listen to them. Lunch is supposed to be a fun time, though – so, make sure you don’t “cramp” their style in a way that makes anyone uncomfortable because you are there. Be genuine. Even though yours is a manager/employee relationship, you’re co-workers. Remember that.
- Give them a break: Make it a productive break from work. Say you’ll step in for 5 minutes. This gives employees on the frontline a break, so they won’t have to produce and/or interact with customers, but they’ll still be present to learn something new. It’s a perfect opportunity to role-model, and to gain insight into how you might improve operations.
- Give them another break: A real break! Let an employee take a walk, get outside, breathe some fresh air, sit in the office and stare at the wall… whatever it is, it’s time to re-group, re-charge, and re-energize in a positive way.
- Be ready: For those down times, you can be pro-active and have a list of small things that you NEED to review with your employees. You may need to mention something important, train for an upcoming marketing campaign, or plant a seed of advice. Whatever it is, keep it positive.
When it comes down to it, all time should be productive, and down time spent re-charging is productive. It ultimately impacts overall productivity in a positive way. Stay positive, be a good leader of your team, and always strive to be better as a team.