Even having all the professional skills and special expertise to perform the best work, you still won’t be able to achieve the desired results in the absence of well-designed motivation strategy and tactics. Let us look closer at ‘gotchas’, which prevent reaching the goal. Almost any motivation can be attributed to one of two types: Motivation of Aspirations and Motivation to Avoid.
During all our life we all experience both types of motivation. When a mother tells her child she will allow him to play a computer game after he finishes his chores she uses the motivation of aspirations. The child feels excitement about his game time and can’t wait to finish all the required work in order to get the ‘prize’.
Let us look at the same situation but in the shade of motivation to avoid. A mother tells her child that if he doesn’t finish all his chores he won’t be allowed to play his computer game. A child feels fear and does everything possible in order to avoid the punishment. The same goal, the same work but different approach and a different mood while fulfilling the task.
- A. Motivation of Aspirations
Many business leaders make mistakes while trying to encourage their employees to get better results. Often the offered benefits that have no added value to the workers themselves. When leaders think about what incentives to offer workers, most of the time they think about monetary rewards and use cost as a barrier. Instead, start thinking about the person who will get the “prize”:
- Do they really need what you are offering?
- Will they be happy working hard in order to get it?
These are very important questions. Your offer might be a waste for your business if it has no value for the one who it is addressed to. For example: for a young sales team, the incentive of health insurance may not be of value. But an extra week of vacation or a one week tour for 2 may sound very attractive. On another hand a more seasoned team who are burdened with their families and health issues will be happier to get health insurance and anything else that can work for their family needs.
Business education in universities and in intermediate training certifications classes built the way to teach business owners how to develop a motivation system for employees which will benefit the company. Yes you can’t ignore it but you should not forget about the personal interests of each employee as well. If you are not able to reach each employee then use your managers and supervisors to find out what will benefit your people the best in order to encourage them to perform a better job. It is always good to go right to the source and ask them directly.
- B. Motivation to Avoid
This type of motivation enforces employees to perform acts which will allow them to avoid undesirable consequences. You have to be very careful and think out well before using this method with sales department. With sales people, it is not difficult to determine when to use this type of motivation. It is advisable to develop strategy that will block seller’s further negative activity but will not look as punishment. If you ignore this moment you will create relationship problem within the team, as a protest to the punishment. In opposite, the right approach will motivate your sellers. For example: if you tell to your sales person, ‘you have not sold 10 dresses and I’m fining you for $100’ – is a punishment which will create a problem. But if you warn him that if he doesn’t sell 10 dresses or sells less there will be a fine of $100, but if he sells more he will get a bonus of $$ – this is a motivation.
Before hiring new employees or a group of sales managers answer to yourself:
- What key elements of the business processes can provide a basis for extra motivation?
- How do you intend to use personal motives of your future employees?
And have your employees to answer:
- Which motivation type is beneficial for them?
- What would they like to have as motivating factors?
Measuring and Tracking Results
In order to measure the quality of results of a particular person or of the whole team, you need to identify the essential parameters of the evaluation of the quality (or key performance indicators – KPI.)
The simplest of them are well-known:
- Monthly sales of the whole team.
- An average sale for one sales person.
- Total sales of each seller.
- The number of potential customers (visitors of a store; incoming calls, etc.) and the number of buyers.
- The conversion rate (the ratio of buyers to the number of potential customers). This will show the quality of customer service, work of sales people and indirectly may show the demand range of products.
After getting the report you should make an administrative decision depending on the surrounding circumstances:
- Replace the employee/employees.
- Send for additional training.
- Use different motivation key.
- Simply talk with them and constantly monitor the work.
There are many methods to implement this philosophy. Each company has the opportunity to select their most effective “carrot and stick”.
By installing these types of control factors, measuring and tracking the progress closely to achieve results, we can say for sure which motivation is suitable for a particular person and respectively for the whole group.