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Here are 3 Ways to Motivate Your Employees beyond Cash

Esi owns a catering business and employs a number of workers for the premises. Being conscious of rising cost of living, she pays a good salary. Her business attracts lots of prospective workers because of the attractive pay package.

It would normally take her a maximum of two days to fill a vacancy.  However, she seems to be constantly saddled with a pool of ill-motivated employees. Most times it appears workers operate with a carefully devised plot to bring her business to disrepute. Her attempts to regularly get rid of the so called ‘bad nuts’ have not improved the caliber of the workforce.  She chanced on conversation between two employees regarding her work rules. Employees stood on their feet working all day but were not entitled to a single free meal.  They have to buy their own meals, and sometimes pay for meals that they have worked hard to cook in case they opt to eat from the restaurant.  This unreasonable rule has created dissatisfaction, and a culture of sluggishness amongst her workforce. 

Employees they say are the most valuable asset for every business and as such should be managed with care and concern. We all seek for good pay packages at work. The first question that is asked to anyone who secures a new job is “how much will you be paid”? Money in terms of salary or income is the main driver for work and mostly determines whether one will take up a job appointment or not. My story, which tends to be quite common in business settings illustrates that there are other important factors that will determine an employee’s drive or motivation at work beyond an attractive pay package.

How often do you reward your employees with gifts?  Going beyond monthly pay package, your employees by their human nature would appreciate when they’re offered gifts. This is similar to children who expect the occasional gift from parents as a reassurance of their care and concern. A gift is not necessarily a reward for work, but demonstrates your care and appreciation for a person. Similarly your employees are duly paid for their work input but the occasional birthday or Christmas gift, or a seemingly mundane item that you may offer to one would go a long way to generate a positive drive at work. It is usually the thought that counts and your people may not necessarily expect expensive gifts before they are assured of your concern.

This second factor may not apply to some employees in our local setting because they would rather work round the clock instead of taking days off from work. When employees are given some extra days off beyond annual leave days, it boosts motivation. Studies have proven that awarding extra days off from work to certain types of employees will drive motivation. Employees such as expectant/nursing mothers, parents with small children, people who may be committed in other activities outside work and student workers would greatly appreciate this offer. I need to emphasize however that such a condition may be subject to abuse, and should be applied with discernment and great caution.

Is your work setting conducive and comfortable for your workers? Research has suggested that when sufficient space is provided for workers, it helps to boost motivation and hence productivity. Employees will be stifled and not give off their best under cluttered or over-crowded work environment where there is no personal space. Employees appreciate the privacy they enjoy from having their own personal space at work. It may not be a large cut out area, but having your own room to maneuver makes a huge difference in worker productivity.

By Amma Adjeiwaa Antwi, M-DoZ Consulting (

M-DoZ Consulting offers Organisational Development, Corporate Training and Financial Planning Services. We can be reached on +233247-247-200, +23320-1196-080, Email:, Facebook: mdozghana

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