There are those leaders who motivate their teams, and there are those who seem to know precisely how to kill team motivation. We’ve all come across the latter. So how do you fare when it comes to killing team motivation?

If you are a manager, then you should definitely read on to discover 10 ways to kill team motivation:

Boss screaming - motivational killer

Inadequate pay:

Not paying your employees sufficiently is equivalent to shouting from the roof top that your employees are not worth much. It can lead to high attrition rates as employees may consider leaving their job for even a minimal pay hike offer.

Make sure you are paying your employees on par with (if not more than) the industry standard.

Lack of appreciation:

If you are one of those bosses who doesn’t notice, acknowledge or care that your team members put in extra effort to finish a project or worked through the weekend to close a deal, then you are definitely on your way to being a motivation killer. The extreme side of this, is when you focus on small errors and criticise your employees for them. Worse still, is when you take the criticism public.

It may lead to your employees withdrawing their efforts and pulling back on their dedication and effort.

Appreciate the hard work put in by your employees. Remember, praise in public and criticise in private.

No self-development:

Employees need to learn and grow and it is the responsibility of the employer to provide individuals with a conducive learning environment. By not providing employees with the chance or time to learn, is likely to lead to apathy within your teams.

Help your employees chart out their development plan and provide them the necessary opportunities to learn.

Lack of open culture:

  • An open channel of communication between employers and employees keeps team motivation up. On the other hand, avoiding any kind of email, one-on-one chats or informal get-togethers, will make your employees question your intent and willingness to engage with them.
  • Picking favourites will definitely motivate those that you show more of an interest in, however, it will demotivate the ones that are being left out.

It is important that your employees work in a healthy environment without fear of losing their job or their voice. Be inclusive towards all team members.

Lack of clear goals:

A manager needs to set clear goals and objectives. When employees lack a solid understanding of their work priorities and expectations, it is difficult for them to be productive and can result in unnecessary wastage of time.

Set clear objectives so that your employees have a thorough understanding of theirs’ and the business priorities.

Unplanned and untimely meetings:

Unplanned meetings called at the last minute, can make your employees lose focus on their current work. More so, if those meetings don’t have an agenda or stick to a time schedule.

Give your employees sufficient warning if you are organising a team meeting. If your thoughts can be conveyed through email, then don’t call a meeting just for the sake of it during busy times. Your team will be able to tell if the meeting lacks important information that impacts them. If you don’t have anything useful to say, better leave it unsaid.

High expectations:

Setting expectations is good, but setting unrealistic deadlines and expecting unreasonable results, is a recipe for disaster. Employees will never be able to meet your lofty goals which will eventually demoralise them. Also, not providing your employees downtime can lead to burnout and fatigue.

A goal-setter should always be the one who works in close proximity with the team members and knows the work culture.

Micromanaging and failing to delegate:

Not giving enough freedom to your employees is another sure way of demotivating your people. Micro managing your employees at every step or withholding work that they could otherwise do, is a roundabout way of telling an employee that you don’t trust their work or judgement.

Your disengaged employee might decide to drudge along until a better offer lures them away.

Remember, why you hired the person in the first place; it will help you let go of any control you may be holding onto.

Dismissing ideas:

Not every employee can come up with great ideas all the time. And not every idea needs to be implemented. However, it is important to at least hear them out. Dismissing your employee’s contribution will make them feel small and disengaged which will be reflected in their work too.

Always encourage your employees to share their thoughts. It will lead to greater participation and higher engagement levels.

Empty promises:

You are great at making promises but not good at keeping them. This is a big motivation killer. Employees respect bosses who like to walk their talk, not just talk the talk. Frequent lack of follow up on promises of more job opportunities or an upgraded pay scale, may eventually demotivate your employees.

If you can’t keep promises, don’t make them in the first place. It’s unfair to patronise employees by giving them false hopes.

Remember, people don’t quit jobs, they quit managers. If you keep your team motivated, they will produce excellent results.

Keep a check on these motivation killers and ensure your team  is a highly motivated one.

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