We all wish that every employee came to work willing to give it their all every single day. The reality is that there are numerous factors that impact employees’ commitment to their work. Some of those factors stem from the job itself, but others involve issues outside of the workplace. The takeaway here is that work ethic is not set. It can improve, with a little guidance.
Work ethic is a personal commitment, but it’s also important for a company. An engaged staff helps a business succeed. And some of the ways a company can motivate their employees are actually quite simple.
Assessing Work Ethic
The first step in improving a team’s work ethic is to pay attention to company culture. Do employees see their workplace as a positive and engaging place? Firstly, evaluate the atmosphere and the physical environment. Next, talk with employees, and train leaders to identify and properly address work issues. Above all, make everyone accountable for the team’s engagement.
Tips for Improving Work Ethic
There are specific steps leaders can take to recognize and improve team members’ commitment to their work:
- Be clear and consistent about expectations.
- Encourage innovations that make the job easier.
- Appreciate diversity.
- Reward quality work.
- Provide feedback.
- Eliminate the sources of negativity.
- Initiate/improve a mentoring program.
- Provide growth opportunities.
This last point is particularly powerful, as it gives employees a goal to work towards and prevents stagnation. Opportunity and hope can be a useful tool for encouraging engagement. For more ideas from business leaders, read Anna Dixon’s 26 Tips to Encourage Strong Work Ethic.
Taking Personal Responsibility for Work Ethic
As with any cultural shift, improving work ethic will take time. But employees need not stop working to improve in their personal lives. There are several simple changes we can all make to strengthen our personal work ethics.
- Take care of your physical and mental health.
- Set small goals.
- Be on time.
- Take pride in what you do.
- Eliminate distractions.
- Don’t let setbacks keep you from progressing.
An important part of building work ethic us being honest with yourself. You know when you’re not giving something your all. Sometimes having clearly defined personal and professional goals can help identify areas that are lacking, making them easier to address. If in the process of self-evaluation, you determine that you’re not proud of your work, it’s time to recognize why so that you can begin to change. Find your motivation and the resources needed to improve your attitude. Then start taking care of yourself and your business.