Are You An “Un-motivational Expert” In The Workplace?

Are you sapping all of the energy out of your employees? Photo © Cristiano Betta
Are you sapping all of the energy out of your employees? Photo © Cristiano Betta
In this day and age, jobs are more than just a paycheck. Employees want to be challenged and motivated by the jobs they hold. Motivating employees can be tough; each person is unique and can respond to different motivational tactics differently. But sometimes we can demotivate our employees without realizing it. In no particular order, here are some things you can do to demotivate your employees.

Don’t give them any goals
You might think that the daily responsibilities that each employee has is enough to motivate them, but I would disagree. Your workers need a goal to work towards. Goals give employees something to aim for, something to achieve. The potential success of achieving goals set for them motivates employees to do their best work.

Give them goals that are too easy
Easy goals to attain are a quick way of building up someone’s confidence and keeps people interested, initially. But after a while easy goals just encourage laziness. Eventually people will know the minimal effort they’ll need to give to attain the easy goals and they’ll be done.

Give them goals that are impossible
The complete opposite of having no goals or goals that are too easy is giving your employees goals that are impossible to attain. This might work at the start of a new job, but constant failure gets old very fast, especially when people realize that it no matter how hard they try, they’ll fail anyway.

Don’t empower them
A really quick way to demotivate those working for you is to give them no responsibility. If your employees have no decision making ability whatsoever, chances are they aren’t going to stick around for very long.

Micromanage them
Along the same lines of empowerment, or lack thereof, always watching your employees every move to make sure they’re doing things the way you want them too is another really quick way to demotivate them.

Don’t listen to their ideas
Yes, your staff was hired to do a job, but they were also hired because they brought some skill that was deemed useful to the organization. Let’s face it, managers don’t know everything, nor should they be expected to. If you consistently shoot down your employees ideas, or don’t even bother to ask for any, they’ll slowly stop contributing.

Put them where they don’t fit
As a manager, you should know what your employees’ strengths and weaknesses are. If you don’t, then you’re placed in the wrong role. Placing people in roles that they’re not suited for is a quick way for people to lose interest.

I would love to hear your feedback on this topic. I think at times we focus a lot of on what motivates others (and rightfully so) that we don’t consider the opposite which could be happening right at this moment unintentionally. What did I miss? In your experience, what other ways have you been demotivated at work?

2 thoughts on “Are You An “Un-motivational Expert” In The Workplace?

    1. I agree Jody! Glad you enjoyed the post. I think sometimes people aren’t aware that they do things like micromanage. I was hoping that this would cause people to think and take a look at their own ways of managing =)

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