How to Keep the Best Staff Motivated

All retailers are at the mercy of their frontline staff, how well they are trained and motivated makes a massive impact on the experience the customer feels. Very few customers will give us a second chance if we don’t get it right the first time – there are too many alternatives these days and it’s easy for a customer to go elsewhere. And then there’s Amazon, as I have said before, a major disruptor that will be after every retailer’s customers.

I feel very flattered when people call me a motivator, this usually happens when they attend one of my training sessions. We base our training around practical processes that help managers to get the best out of their people, we use activities to highlight key points and ensure that our sessions are packed full of fun. The challenge always is, after any training session, no matter how good, is to maintain that level of enthusiasm and motivation.

Team member enthusiasm and motivation is a big challenge for a lot of managers, as they just expect their team members to come to work fired up ready to go, yet not everyone is like that. I know we want our teams to turn up focussed and leave their personal issues at the door, but we do employ people and not robots, so some will have a few challenges from time to time.

This is where strong leadership from managers makes all the difference. It’s the strong leaders who have the ability to always get the best out of their people and it often starts with finding out what makes each individual tick, their short and long-term goals and aligning this with the businesses goals. This always seems like hard work, however, the best employers do this so well and having a highly motivated team is critical for success in today’s very challenging environment.

To help you out, I came across these five fantastic questions that every leader should be asking their team on a regular basis, via a weekly blog I read from Verne Harnish of Gazelles. These questions will get to the heart of where each team member is at and help you to align with their goals and dreams.

  1. Have I asked about their dreams and career aspirations?
  2. Do I know what they want to learn professionally and outside of work?
  3. What do they do for fun and am I challenging them to make space for those activities?
  4. Would I be comfortable chatting with their parents about the work environment I’ve created?
  5. Would I want my own child’s manager to care for my kid the same way I care for my team?

Very powerful questions as I’m sure you’ll agree. These questions will uncover a lot of information on each team member’s goals and motivating factors. This information will help managers to get the best out of their people as well as creating a great feeling that you actually care about your people. Who wouldn’t want to work for someone who does that!

I can’t emphasize enough, the importance of having regular conversations with your team and hopefully, these questions will help you to do that. The result might just be the difference of a team member who offers an average experience or a team member who consistently provides experiences that makes every customer’s day. Try to get that on Amazon!!

Roger Simpson – CEO, The Retail Solution and Author of “The Ultimate Retail Sales Experience” With over 35 years’ industry experience, Roger Simpson is recognized as Australia’s #1 Authority on customer ROI in the retail industry and as a global expert on staff coaching, customer service, and selling skills.