Here are a few engagement strategies that can promote healthy competition so everyone pulls in the same direction and co-workers applaud each other's accomplishments.
If you're looking to get your staff's creative juices going and encourage engagement, good old-fashioned competition can prove effective. Generally speaking, people tend to be naturally ambitious when it comes to anything that's related to performance. It's part of the reason why making various desirable incentives and benefits available to your workers often pays substantial dividends, as they know that those perks serve as rewards for jobs well done.
At the same time, though, competition can often lead to diminishing returns. Some may fall into the trap of winning at all costs and seek to put themselves in the best position possible to achieve victory, even if it's at their co-workers' expense. Others may feel tinges of resentment if colleagues are being lauded with praise by supervisors and their efforts are going unacknowledged.
In situations such as these, aims at fostering productive competition can ultimately prove counterproductive and wind up harming office camaraderie. Here are a few engagement strategies that can promote healthy competition so everyone pulls in the same direction and co-workers applaud each other's accomplishments.
1. Be equally effusive when recognising good work
Everyone deserves to be given credit where credit is due. When individuals are called out in a company meeting or are "name-dropped" in a company-wide email, it can imbue even the most humble and unassuming of people with a sense of pride. But it's important to ensure that when you recognise somebody for doing great work, you use the same level of praise for the next person who goes beyond the call of duty. The phrasing doesn't necessarily need to be verbatim, but the tone of an email or announcement should be similar so no one feels like their efforts weren't as fully appreciated as they perhaps could have been.
2. Get to know each person at a more human-to-human level
Some things in life - such as a well-aged wine or deliciously flaky fruit pie - you just can't hurry. A classic example is becoming more well-acquainted with your staff. Make a point of reaching out to them on a daily basis, whether via instant messaging, email or face-to-face interaction. As you do this over time, you'll get a better sense of what motivates them and how they prefer to be recognised when their actions and efforts deem it appropriate. In short, you'll learn what makes them tick.
3. Make rewards team-oriented
As the old saying goes, there's no "I" in team, but it may sometimes feel that way if only certain people are given rewards in team-related challenges, after landing the most sales or referrals, for example. As an alternative, you may want to hand out any individual rewards and instead offer everyone who participated the same incentive, such as a group outing or in-office pizza party. This helps to re-emphasise the messaging that all contests are friendly in nature, not winner takes all
4. Create a company-wide goal
This goes part and parcel with becoming more well acquainted with your staff. When you know each person's strengths and weaknesses, you can get a sense of what they need to do to become more successful. Try to develop a goal for the company as a whole that can be accomplished when each person reaches his or her objective. Workers may be more inclined to root for one another when they know that their colleagues' success is in their best interest.
These are a handful of ways to inject healthy competition into your workplace. Contact us at Power2Motivate to learn more about our employee engagement solutions.