Recruitment in the construction industry is fierce. It is definitely a candidate’s market at the moment, with talent shortages and lots of competition. Once you bring someone new onto the team, how can you ensure that they are there to stay for the long run? Motivation is intrinsically tied to job satisfaction, and if your team stops being engaged, they are more likely to be poached or to start actively looking for opportunities elsewhere.
In this article, we will review a few of the factors that can make a huge difference when it comes to keeping your team motivated.
One of the biggest reasons why employees become disengaged is that they get bored performing the same task over and over again. In construction, this can be particularly dangerous; if people are not paying attention, they can make mistakes, and risk hurting themselves or others. Look for opportunities to switch up the day-to-day tasks that your employees are performing. Not only will you expose them to new skills, but you will keep their minds on the job.
We are social beings, and if you want your employees to stay motivated at work, social outlets can be really important. Of course, this does not mean that you should all of a sudden be paying for team retreats or weekly barbeques, but it is important for your team to get to know one another, especially in construction where communication is essential for on-the-job safety. Consider holding regular team meetings, or having interactive sessions when a new employee starts so they can feel integrated into the team.
A lot of times – especially with more menial tasks – supervisors will only explain what needs to be done, but remember that the why is also important. In fact, employees are more likely to stay engaged and perform better if they understand the reasoning behind their work. In construction, this could be more context around the ultimate goals or explaining how their particular task fits into the larger vision for the project.
In some projects you need to be particularly detailed about how the job is accomplished. But where possible, try to give your employees some level of autonomy. After all, they are the ones completing these same tasks day after day, they may have some good insight regarding how the process could be improved. This encourages team members to think strategically and increase their ownership and responsibility over the task at hand, thus increasing their engagement and motivation.
Regular feedback serves a few important purposes. Firstly, it is incredibly important to keeping someone’s head in the job, and thus motivated to perform well. Regular feedback also helps team members continue to improve and offers them opportunities to voice any concerns or questions that they may have. All of this is essential to engagement; if someone starts to feel like their manager is not invested in them and their professional development, they are more likely to begin looking at other opportunities.
Taking even small steps towards helping your employees feel engaged can increase their level of motivation and keep them with you long term.