January is a notoriously difficult month for many of us including the typical b2b telemarketing agency. Long days, dark skies, cold weather, and credit card bills from the Christmas hangover take their toll on workers across all sectors. For many, January can be less productive than other months as employees struggle to find the energy to start new projects or drive plans forward.
The only way to counter this New Year malaise is to get motivated. With a little effort from managers, most employees will find the extra energy they need to knuckle down and get 2020 off to a cracking good start. To help managers get their workforce back on track, we’re sharing some easy and effective motivational techniques used in our b2b telemarketing agency to boost productivity and improve office morale in no time.
Herzberg’s theory of motivation
Frederick Herzberg was an American psychologist who became one of the most influential names in business management in the 20th century. Known for his two-factor theory of motivation, his book ‘One more time, how do you motivate employees?’ sold more than 1.2 million copies when it was published in 1968. Although his ideas may now be half a century old, they still hold true for managers looking to inspire employees and boost productivity in the winter months.
Herzberg didn’t work in a b2b telemarketing agency, alas, but he believed that in most kinds of organisations, motivation was influenced by factors that fell into two broad categories. These are motivators and hygiene factors. Motivating factors are the features of a workplace which actively encourage morale, happy factor, or a better rate of work, and which give employees the energy and the drive to make the discretionary extra effort. Without motivators, employees would struggle to put 100% into their work all the time.
Hygiene factors, on the other hand, won’t necessarily motivate workers to be more productive simply by being present, but their absence could demotivate workers, and therefore reduce productivity. These are things that we would expect to have in our places of work such as training, support, a warm clean environment, and proper working support systems. So, where hygiene factors are the must-have components of the workplace, motivators are the optional extra features that make a business and workplace desirable, such as free fruit, or hot drinks, easy parking, attractive buildings. Ensuring the presence of both hygiene factors and motivators, therefore, is crucial if managers want to get the very best out of their workforce.
There are a number of motivators that Herzberg identified in his theory. Chief among them was the belief that by giving workers increased responsibility, meaningful and fulfilling work, and increased autonomy would improve motivation levels and give workers a sense of pride and satisfaction. These days we refer to this as creating meaning in our work and we are all too aware of the impacts of not doing so, not just on mental health and wellbeing, but also on the bottom line, as the notion of happy workers is now inextricably linked with happy customers and bottom-line profit.
He also encouraged managers to reward achievement and recognise hard work among their employees. According to recruitment experts, Morgan Mckinley meaningful and challenging work scores No.1 in the things that motivate employees, at No. 2 is that companies should seek to improve the lives of workers, and No. 3 was that companies should offer recognition and praise for a job well done.
In Herzberg’s theory, hygiene factors are basic provisions that can demotivate a workforce by their absence. These include adequate pay, good working conditions, and fair and appropriate supervision. Although the presence of these important factors won’t necessarily motivate a workforce, their absence will significantly hinder productivity and sap employee morale in the process, especially in an environment such as the busy sales floor, customer service team, or b2b telemarketing agency.
A two-pronged approach
Managers looking to boost motivation this January should, therefore, take a two-pronged approach if they want to improve productivity for good. Looking at both motivating factors and hygiene factors will help company bosses to provide the best conditions possible for their workers and increase motivation levels across the board.
If you’d like to find out more about boosting motivation and improving the quality of your workforce, explore the information on our site or get in touch with a member of our team.