The Best Ways to Motivate Your Employees

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It can be challenging to find the fun in the drudgery of a 9-to-5 job. Most people get up in the morning and go to work because it is a necessity, not because they genuinely enjoy the environment their office provides. What can you do to help your employees have more fun at work and get them to enjoy coming to the office every day?

Exude Positivity

The right attitude is especially vital if you work in a high-stress industry. Research has shown emotions are contagious — what you feel will slowly spread from you and affect the moods of those around you. If you are negative when you come into the office, that mood will infect those around you. On the other hand, if you exude positivity, it will encourage your team to be positive, too.

It isn’t always easy, but you should try to remain as upbeat as possible. You’ll see the results throughout the office, as more people will look forward to coming to work if their workspace is always a source of positive vibes.

Incentivize Fun

If every day looks the same in your office, why not change things up a bit? Create incentives that will lighten the mood and break up the monotony of the day. Create friendly competitions, and reward winners with monetary incentives. If your dress code is business casual or professional attire, change it up by implementing casual Fridays. Celebrate a successful week by hosting a pizza party. The exact details are up to you, but by making a change to your regular schedule, you can help your employees have more fun at work.

Make Dull Activities Entertaining

There are plenty of things in the office most people don’t associate with fun, like workplace safety seminars and what to do if there is an injury or a death on the premises. It doesn’t have to be all dour and dull, though — even mundane things can be fun if you take time to spice them up. People will remember essential elements better if they have fun during the lesson.

Celebrate Your Successes

Success in the workplace benefits everyone, so why not celebrate those successes together as a team? For small wins, bring coffee and doughnuts or have pizza delivered to your office. For big successes, especially those that bring in a lot of money or a new high-paying client, take your team out to dinner or plan a team outing everyone can enjoy.

Listen to Your Team

Pizza parties are fun, but not everyone will enjoy getting pizza delivered to the office — especially if they’re lactose-intolerant or eating a vegan or gluten-free diet. If you’re planning to shake up your work environment and make it more fun, try talking to your team and finding out what they want to do, or what they would enjoy receiving as an incentive. It’s not going to be fun if you have team members who can’t or don’t want to participate. Open your door or your inbox and get suggestions from your employees before you start making any decisions.

Improving employee happiness is probably one of the simplest things you can do to decrease turnaround and increase employee loyalty. Many of these ideas are easy and inexpensive to implement, and will provide nearly infinite returns. No one wants to come to work in an office that is consistently negative. Create a positive work environment by listening to your team, and take time to celebrate your successes, no matter how small. You’ll be surprised how much happier and more productive your team becomes.

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Scott Huntington is a writer from Harrisburg PA. Find his work on Business Insider, Yahoo Autos, Time, INC, and more. Follow him on Twitter @SMHuntington.