The job of managers and executives is to get things done through the efforts of others. To do this successfully, effective leaders must be able to motivate their employees. Although this may seem obvious, it is often easier said than done.
The theory and practice of improving productivity through employee motivation is a challenging subject, touching on several disciplines ranging from human psychology to the organizational environment and structure. This subject is usually not clearly understood and is very often poorly practiced in the workplace, but the fact remains that job performance is clearly a function of ability and motivation.
An employee's ability is dependent on a mix of education, experience, training and intelligence (or “street smarts”). Improving ability is typically a long and slow process, requiring significant investments of time and capital. Motivation, however, can be improved relatively quickly and without significant investments of time and capital. To understand the relationship between job performance and employee motivation, one must consider the impact of several drivers, including:
• Employee rewards
• Informal group dynamics
• Job design
The final mix and weighting would vary from one situation to another, but these are basic strategies a manager should employ when developing a plan to improve motivation. Motivation, therefore, is a means to manipulate job performance by inducing employees towards the goals and objectives set by the motivator.
Among the various drivers of motivation, numerous studies (and basic intuition) state that monetary employee rewards are clearly the most effective driver of motivation. Although monetary rewards can offset deficiencies in other drivers of motivation such as human relations, no amount of human relations can substitute insufficient monetary rewards. The challenge for leaders and human resources managers then becomes one of identifying the financial mechanisms that maximize economic benefit for employees, while minimizing costs to employers.
Managed employee discount programs have emerged as a popular and effective means of enhancing monetary financial rewards for employees. Employee discount programs allow employers to extend real financial benefits to employees; essentially increasing overall compensation through indirect means.
Based on studies conducted by consultants at EmployeeHelper, companies of all sizes are embracing employee discount programs as a means to reward and motivate employees and ultimately increase job and corporate performance.
Stephanie Marks is the Vice President of Employer Relations at EmployeeHelper.com http://www.employeehelper.com/, responsible for developing world-class employee discount solutions for leading companies. With over 15 years of senior human resources management experience, Stephanie provides key insight into the employee benefit needs of employers and their employees. For more information, visit http://www.employeehelper.com.