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Clarity is key to motivating employees in tough times

For the past four years or so, firms and their staffs have been working in an economic environment of uncertainty and challenge.

For the past four years or so, firms and their staffs have been working in an economic environment of uncertainty and challenge. This presents hurdles for companies seeking to motivate workers.

Fortunately, many businesses have identified successful employee recognition strategies. One of the most important parts of such programs is communication with staff members concerning expectations, opportunities and rewards.

Recent research by Gallup cites clarity as a key component to motivating workers in uncertain economic times. This means helping employees identify what's expected of them as well as what firms consider their top talents to be.

"People need to know what's expected of them, have what they need to do their job, have a chance to do what they do best, and use their talents, or they'll retreat," said Jim Harter, Gallup's chief scientist of employee engagement and well-being. "If employees lack clarity, they don't see themselves as part of the solution."

Firms shouldn't forget to recognize staff members who are able to wed their talents to their tasks successfully. Small acknowledgements can go a long way.

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