10 tips to improve employee motivation

A survey of more than 7,000 employees across 20 countries suggests UK employees have some of the lowest engagement with their jobs in the world[1.HR Magazine - UK near bottom of employee engagement ranking]. If employee motivation is lacking in your team (or across the company) maybe it’s time to inject a bit of fun - and empathy - into your approach. Here’s our run-down of 10 key engagement tips you should apply now:

1.Lunch and learn

Upskilling across departments and teams is invaluable in building a robust knowledge economy. Make it your mission to run a ‘lunch and learn’ session once a month to build cross-divisional relationships, increase skill-set and develop a wider understanding of the company’s purpose. Run it in a lunch hour, order in some sandwiches and keep it light and friendly. What’s not to love?

2.Employee of the month

Celebrating achievements big or small is vital in motivating and inspiring your people. Whether it’s casting a vote - or selecting an employee - show them what it means to have them part of the company and why.

3. Happy hour ‘mocktail/cocktail session’

Give employees the chance to connect on a social level. Finish an hour early on a Friday and set-up a ‘happy hour’ area in the staff canteen. Set a recipe challenge and let employees collaborate, unwind and ‘debrief’ over the working week. It will inspire them to not only share opinions on current projects, but destress from the working week.

4. Innovation polling station

Whether it’s tacking an existing challenge or coming up with ideas for a new product, encourage employees to play a part in the ‘bigger picture’. Set up a polling station area and every week pose a question on a board. Having a platform that’s always open for creative thinking is a great way to maintain an ‘always on’ approach to employee ideas.

5. Weekly 121s

Ensure your team have regular 121s with their line manager to keep communication fluid and consistent. By allocating a regular time slot you will enable both parties to speak about real-time performance needs, deliverables and concerns arising.

6. Assign a mentor

Mentors bring an element of expert personal development for employees whereby they otherwise wouldn’t get. It’s a great opportunity to get a ‘fresh pair of eyes’ over an idea or project and will guide employees on how to overcome workplace challenges. In essence, it’s a problem solving initiative that is honest and fruitful for both parties. It’s also particularly useful during the on-boarding phase of the employee lifecycle.

7. Encourage staff to stick to office hours

Rather than encourage flagging behaviour that has a negative effect in business, make sure your people understand what is expected if they are finding themselves caught out in a never-ending cycle of late nights in the office. It’s a conversation that needs to be addressed and resolved to keep all parties happy.

8. Promote office perks with taster days

Whether it’s a chair massage at their desk or a trial pass to the local gym, give employees another reason to love working at the company.

9. Take full lunch breaks

No, we’re not talking about a quick five minute break stuffing a soggy sandwich in front of the computer. Always ask staff to take the full lunch hour away from their desk. It’s a necessity for keeping a clear head throughout the day.

10. Team away days

Cross-divisional team engagement can’t happen in a day – or can it? By having regular staff outings away from the familiar office setting, it will encourage employees to build new and existing relationships. An instrumental factor in engaging and inspiring your workforce.


  1. HR Magazine – UK near bottom of employee engagement ranking