How Utah businesses can motivate their employees in tough times | First Utah Bank

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How Utah businesses can motivate their employees in tough times

We’re proud to offer business banking services to companies all throughout Utah. Whether they need business checking accounts, loans, or lines of credit; from Salt Lake City to Lehi – we offer it all. And yet, we also understand that the companies we provide business banking services for have employees with needs. They sometimes need more than just business banking services, they need thought leadership advice on how to keep their employees happy during tough times. And that’s what we wanted to focus on today.

We live in difficult times. With inflation passing 40-year highs, a war in Europe, and a global pandemic still simmering in the background, Americans have a lot on their minds these days. And with the unemployment rate at 3.5%, many look to their employers for the support they need to get through tough times. For many businesses, hiring a great team is only half the battle. To achieve true organizational success, Utah-based companies and beyond must retain their top talent.

Why it’s so important to cultivate a motivated workforce

Given the high price of hiring and training new employees, it makes solid business sense to retain as many of your best people as possible. How you make your employees feel plays a crucial role in retaining them. For the best results, businesses must focus on factors that are important to employees on a personal level. And while these factors differ from person to person, many share a lot of commonalities.

Smart managers take a deep dive into factors that keep their employees motivated first by asking them. Sometimes all you need is good listening skills to learn what makes your people tick. Organizations must make employee motivation a part of their core culture to succeed at it. Motivational techniques and methodologies must be infused into your employees’ daily work lives. They should be more than just a one-time initiative, they should be robust and ongoing.

According to a 2018 Gallup Report on employee engagement, companies with a highly motivated workforce have a 21% higher level of profitability. They also have 17% higher productivity than similar companies with a disengaged workforce. This clearly proves that motivated workers complete their tasks quicker and more error-free. They’re more apt to “go the extra mile” for their employer and demonstrate greater levels of workplace longevity. That’s why it is so important for your business to cultivate a motivated workforce. But how exactly do you do it?

True motivation must start at the top

True employee motivation starts at the top. Actions must be taken at the most senior levels of your organization to ensure the initiative is taken and employees remain motivated. The first step towards doing this is ensuring that people are there for your employees when your employees need them. Have constant interactions, set proper expectations, and truly listen to grievances without judgment.

Active listening helps leaders create an environment that facilitates higher levels of productivity. Your employees want to see that the senior leadership at your company reflects their values. If you ask your employees to behave a certain way, your employees will expect the same in return from you. When exceptional leaders take the lead, employees are quick to follow suit.

Take note of your workplace environment

Dark, cramped spaces with uncomfortable furniture are not motivating environments. Just consider that, on average, people spend 90,000 hours at work in their lifetime. People want to be comfortable at home. Obviously, they want to be comfortable at work as well. You want to make sure your workplace has adequate lighting. Go for natural light wherever possible. Make sure you clean the windows and carpets regularly and ensure ample desk and office space for those who need it.

Up-to-date equipment is also critical to a positive work environment. No matter what equipment you use, make sure it is new and in good working condition. This could encompass everything from computers to lamps, phones, and dining facilities. Make sure trash is always taken out and food is stocked in vending machines or the cafeteria. These are basic measures that go a long way in producing goodwill amongst your people.

Facilitate an atmosphere of respect and honesty

Mutual respect among leaders and employees is vital to the successful functioning of a modern workplace. Employees, no matter the industry or line of business, love to work for leaders who are honest, transparent, and respectful in their approach. Open lines of communication must be built into your company culture. If an employee comes to you with a problem, they should expect a fair and measured response.

As we mentioned before, leadership at every level must reflect the values of the organization. Forward-thinking companies invest in leadership training and development. This ensures an uplifting company culture is filtered from the top down.

Here at First Utah Bank, we are proud to foster a motivating and welcoming environment. Our bankers and other staff love the work they do. Serving the people and businesses of the great state of Utah with personal and business banking services they can rely on sits at the core of who we are. We stay motivated for you. Thank you for letting us serve you throughout the years.