Feeling Post-Holiday Burnout? Here are Five Ways to Motivate Your Team

    You worked diligently through the holidays, maybe worked some overtime in January to get a little extra dough to pay off those gifts. But as winter stretches on and the days off are few and far between, perhaps you or your employees are finding it difficult to stay motivated.

    KarenAs the light at the end of the tunnel seems so far away, employees are experiencing burnout before their first 40 hours are over, according to Karen Hsu, VP of Marketing for Badgeville.

    Hsu notes there are two types of motivation, extrinsic and intrinsic, and they align with people’s most basic impulses – to run away from something due to fear or to run toward an object in anticipation of a reward. In simple terms, intrinsic motivation compels people to take actions that are inherently interesting and enjoyable, whereas extrinsic motivation focuses them on doing things for tangible rewards or in response to pressures.

    Intrinsic motivation is inexhaustible, drives long-term improvement and inspires people to achieve their personal best and then aim even higher. So how do you get to that moment? Here are her five tips that can help you maximize intrinsic motivation:

    Set milestones: In many workplaces, projects are a long-term slog (much as the gap between the winter holidays and spring can be a long and difficult stretch!). By setting milestones, you can give employees short-term goals to reach — and a reason to celebrate each achievement. Breaking long projects down into component pieces with clearly defined objectives keeps people on track and focused over the course of the project.

    Improve accountability: Accountability is closely related to goal-setting. In addition to setting milestones, you can improve employee focus with a platform that automatically holds them accountable for achieving their goals. Digital motivation, which allows companies to nudge employees toward objectives, can be especially important with team members who work remotely; greater accountability improves productivity and motivation.

    Provide recognition: Giving people tools to build their reputations unlocks intrinsic motivation. For example, a list of classes doesn’t tell employees how learning and development or compliance initiatives help them get ahead in their careers, so they lack intrinsic motivation. But a platform that gives them a way to build their reputation by earning expert designations and gaining a persistent record of accomplishment provides strong motivation to earn certifications and complete coursework.

    Personalize programs: While a company-wide gamification strategy with a robust, integrated platform can improve motivation levels throughout the organization, it’s important to keep in mind that as individuals, employees are motivated by different things. Some pursue knowledge, others want to build their professional skillset and many are motivated by recognition on a social level. It’s critical to personalize programs to individual preferences.

    Shoot for a cultural transformation: To maximize employee engagement and keep motivation going all year long, you should reach for nothing less than a full-fledged cultural transformation with programs that reinforce your corporate values. With the right digital motivation plan, you can transform “have to” into “want to” for an intrinsically motivated workforce that is running toward goals instead of away from negative consequences.