Six Motivational Techniques for Managers

HR specialist and writer, Dennis Phoenix, suggests six motivational techniques for managers.

Any manager knows that a motivated team is a productive team. The success of any business is dependent on the motivation of its employees. Happy and engaged employees invariably lead to productivity and profit. Unfortunately, motivational techniques are anything but an exact science. What works for one individual doesn’t for another.

It is critical for a manager or small business owner to find out what motivates their team. In many cases, it boils down to getting to know each employee on an individual basis. Some are motivated by money alone, some prefer recognition and others are motivated when they feel valued.

Six motivational techniques for managers


It is said that good communication is the number one factor in any good relationship. A leader must always be approachable and accessible. In other words, keep the door open. Spending time with employees on a one to one basis will put them at ease and alleviate uncertainty. It will also give the manager keen insight into what motivates each of his employees.


A manger should make time for his employees to spend time together socializing during work hours. Treat your team to refreshments after a meeting or go all out and provide a meal for them. Cater it or cook it up yourself. A brunch or sandwiches will let the team know they are appreciated. This is also a teambuilding exercise as they will have the opportunity to spend time together ‘outside’ of work.


Award programs have been around for years and are a great way to recognize employees for achieving a goal or objective. Choose an award that is appropriate to the achievement. It might be something casual, like an envelope with movie tickets. Or you may want to go all out and present someone with a nice art glass award for a bigger reward. Either way, the reward should be conveyed with a genuine sense of appreciation.


Motivational techniques for managers

Everyone wants to improve themselves. Take advantage of this human trait by providing employees with challenges and goals they can achieve. Instead of facing new challenges alone, use the opportunity to put them on members of the team. Are there projects sitting idly on the shelf? Hand them over to a staff member to head up and get moving again. Have too much on your own plate? Look for an opportunity to hand some of the workload off to one of your top performers.

Time Off

Few things are appreciated more than a little paid time off. If an individual or team had gone above and beyond on a project, let them take an afternoon off. Or go the extra mile in showing your appreciation by taking an employee to lunch and then giving them the rest of the day off.

Train and Mentor

Motivate employees by providing them with additional training, even if doing so makes them all the more attractive to other employers. Employees in companies where additional training or educational opportunities exist are more likely to stay motivated, even if they don’t take immediate advantage of the opportunities. The same is true of organizations that take the time to set up mentoring programs.

Author bio: Dennis Phoenix is a human resource specialist and writer. He writes on topics including business relationships, productivity, employee satisfaction, and corporate awards. He spends his weekends mountain biking and photographing nature.