The Secret Every Leader Must Know to Impact Employee Motivation

Author: Mike Kohler, Brian Lamb School Instructor

Numerous studies, including a massive one conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, have revealed what most communication professionals know intuitively, that pay is not the driver for an employee’s decision to leave an organization. In fact, it’s not even close.

Not surprisingly, lack of appreciation is the reason cited most often by employees for leaving. Which is sad, given what the employees, not executives or consultants, say is the number one form of recognition.

It can be summed up in 3 little 2-letter words: In on it.

That’s it – in on it.

Translated, it just means including employees in developing and executing the organization’s game plan. That calls for transparency at the top, cascading the vision throughout the organization in an open, fear-free environment.

And that, unfortunately, is easier said than done. Too often, strategy is confined to the boardroom and operational details are held close to the vest by managers. Job insecurity? Too much for the “little people” to have a grasp of? It’s hard to tell what reasoning prevents opening the books to close scrutiny and inviting input.

But it’s not logical from a financial standpoint. Because inclusion doesn’t need to cost a penny, and it can yield powerful results. It’s worth a try.

Unless, of course, you’re sure that the accounts payable clerk and the machinist on the plant floor limit their knowledge to their assigned tasks.

Learn More About Strategic Communications
Mike Kohler is a member of the online faculty of Purdue’s online Master of Science in Communication degree program. The program can be completed in just 10 courses (20 months) and covers numerous topics critical for advancement in the communication industry, including crisis communication, social media engagement, focus group planning and implementation, survey design and survey analysis, public relations theory, professional writing, and communication ethics.

About the Author
Mike Kohler has been a business owner, business coach and communication consultant. He has served as a communications vice president for two of the largest U.S. broadband companies and as a marketing and communications consultant for all types and sizes of organizations.  Stemming from his experience as both a franchisee and master franchisor, Kohler co-authored The Educated Franchisee, a guide for prospective entrepreneurs. He earned his MBA and a Bachelor’s in Journalism from the University of Nebraska-Omaha.

*The views and opinions expressed are of the author and do not represent the Brian Lamb School of Communication.