The Highly Successful Retail Manager (HSRM) knows that motivated employees direct increased energy into behaviors that move them toward their professional and personal goals.
They will initiate more positive revenue generating activities and they will be more persistent in working towards, and achieving, success.
Motivation will increase performance overall.
In fact, HSRM’s firmly believe that having excellent, motivated people is the single, biggest factor in the success of any store or sales organization.
There are two basic types of motivation:
- External Motivation – or motivation that comes from external sources
- Internal Motivation – or motivation which comes from within
HSRM’s try, through their recruiting and hiring practices, to ensure that every associate brought into the organization is intrinsically motivated.
It is sometimes a difficult thing to ascertain but it is definitely worth the effort.
Although HSRM’s are willing and able to provide external motivation, it is much easier to get the desired results from their efforts if the person already has internal motivation going for them.
In fact, it is often said that it is close to impossible to motivate someone or, at least, it is close to impossible to keep that person motivated strictly by introducing external motivational techniques.
It may work for a very brief time but it does not have the on going effect.
One manager offered an interesting example which illustrates this point:
He had heard, from his subordinates, that they would be very happy if the company provided free fresh fruit in the lunchroom.
They reasoned that it would provide them with a healthy snack to keep up their energy so they could work harder.
They said it would be such a wonderful thing for the company to do that they would find it very motivational.
So, thinking this was a relatively low cost way of providing external motivation, he decided to have a daily supply of fresh fruit delivered at the expense of the company.
For the first few days all of the employees were very excited. They were thrilled that the company would do something like this just for them.
But, within a few days, certain employees were complaining that they were not getting the particular fruit that they wanted because someone else got to it first.
Those same employees started spending time, prior to their break, waiting at the door so that they could grab their favorite piece of fruit from the delivery person.
Other employees – those who were normally happy, productive employees – stopped eating the fruit because it had become such an issue amongst those who were complaining and they just didn’t want to be involved.
The result was completely opposite of what had been intended. The fruit deliveries were halted.
HSRM’s provide external motivation to employees through:
- Recognition of their efforts and achievements
- Genuine praise
- Rewards – mainly non-monetary
- Making them feel like a valued, contributing member of a winning team
Sales Meetings play a significant role in motivating employees provided the meetings:
- Promote the ‘team’ concept
- Provide training that is helpful in the associates pursuit of their goals
- Are interesting and positive
- Are not used as disciplinary sessions
HSRM’s attempt to motivate during one on one meetings and coaching sessions as well.
Even when an associate needs to be reprimanded or corrected in some way, the HSRM turns the meeting into a positive motivational experience by using words and phrases like:
- I have confidence in you
- You do other things so well
- I know you can do it
- I’m always available to help you
- We need you
In another post here, we discussed leading by example. This deserves mention again in this section because it is so important as a motivator for the team.
The HSRM is an intrinsically motivated individual and it shows. He displays his positive mental attitude at all times and this has a motivating effect on his subordinates.
The HSRM knows that if everyone in the organization is motivated there are no limits to what can be achieved.