I’ve been reading a lot on this subject and more often than not, I come across articles that are based on the assumption that unmotivated employees are lazy or a ‘bad hire’. This is not always the case. It has been found that even the best hires can, at times, become demotivated owing to certain circumstances. The team leaders and managers in this regard, must be aware of the signs of demotivation and should always be ready to assist and re-energize such employees; as not dealing with demotivated employees leads to more widespread problem and results in loss of productivity as well as revenue.

Signs that show an employee’s demotivation

Every manager or team leader in your company should have the ability to spot potential problems with their subordinates. In fact it is one of the key responsibilities of a team manager to identify whenever a behavioral change occurs in the member of his team. Once their problem is identified, it can be dealt with for the good of both the employee and the business. We have listed below a few tell-tale signs of a demotivated employee.

  • Lack of interest in assigned tasks and their completion
  • Increased absence and/or late comings
  • Extended breaks or time away from the desk
  • Increased time to start working after arriving in the office
  • Negative change in behavior towards manager / coworkers

Factors that contribute to an employee’s demotivation

Since, there are multiple factors that can be attributed to demotivated employees in your organization, we have listed most of them for a clear understanding.

  • No sense of career progression
  • Boredom
  • Lack of confidence in company’s decisions / policies
  • Lack of appreciation from the management
  • Too much workload
  • Micromanagement by the employer
  • Unfriendly or incompatible working environment
  • Lack of communication and transparency from the management

Impact of an unmotivated employee

Being a team manager or an employer, you need to understand that having an unmotivated employee in your company does a lot of damage, in a number of ways. Below are a few of them:

  • Loss in productivity of that employee leading to delays in achievement of company’s ultimate goals
  • Demotivated behavior negatively impacting other employees around them as well as the general atmosphere within the department/office
  • In case their job is to deal directly with the clients, the problem isn’t contained within the office environment but is also passed on to the clients. This could lead to serious problems in relationship between the business and its customers.
  • Not dealing with their motivation could lead to the unmotivated employees spreading negative word of mouth about your company and result in damage to the brand’s image.

How to ensure employee motivation at work

  • Clearly define the organization’s vision, mission and strategy as well as the goals and objectives of each employee.
  • Empower your employees to succeed and delegate challenging and meaningful work.
  • Work with each employee to create their own personal development plan.
  • Monitor the progress of your employees towards accomplishing their goals and objectives.
  • Focus on employee happiness rather than employee motivation, as happy employees are always more productive.

You may also check our infographic on Motivated vs Unmotivated Employees