Don't demotivate your employees! Everyone seems to have an idea about how to motivate employees. But these things never work to motivate employees and almost always, in fact, demotivate:

  • Never personally attack someone. By all means, you should give constructive criticism. Feedback is important. But you should criticize only the behavior, not the person.

  • Never embarrass an employee. Self-esteem is critical to motivation. When you do have to provide criticism, do so in private. It doesn’t help for others to overhear your words; it only makes the situation worse.

  • Don’t govern by fear. If you run your department in a finger-pointing way, your best employees won’t stay for long. And you’re certainly not fostering open communication and teamwork, which are key motivating elements.

  • Don’t shoulder all the responsibility. Let your employees take responsibility for their positions. Not only can you make your life easier, but you’re also helping your employees feel valued and respected.

  • Don’t overwork your employees. Plan for peak work periods and take advantage of temporary staffing opportunities. Hire top-performing temporary professionals. Whatever you do, don’t overload your employees for long stretches of time. You’re giving them an invitation to find an employer who can provide a bit of balance.

Hopefully, you were patting yourself on the back while you read this list because you’re already avoiding these demotivation techniques!