Good leaders recognize that people come from a variety of backgrounds and are looking for different things from an employer. Whether it’s affiliation, independence, or anything in between, it’s important to take the time to understand the unique needs of each employee in order to meet those needs. Happy employees equal a happy and productive workforce.
5 Basic Needs of Employees
While there are a variety of specific needs exhibited by employees, they generally fall into these five categories:
1. Equity—Employees that need equity expect equity in pay, treatment, and benefits among other things. For these employees, working in an equitable environment trumps all other motivators.
2. Esteem—Workers with the need for esteem have an ongoing need to feel appreciated. You can meet these needs by providing sincere, positive feedback and providing public recognition for a job well done.
3. Autonomy—These folks crave freedom. Once competence is demonstrated, it is beneficial to give these employees as much flexibility as possible. This can be done by allowing them to have input in their schedule and providing them with independent and challenging tasks.
4. Security—Employees looking for security seek the safety and security of a secure workplace. A stable income and fringe benefits are of the utmost importance to this group.
5. Power—These employees are highly motivated by titles, position, and power. Some practical ways to fill this need is by appointing these people to head committees or group projects. This group of employees is often comprised of the next generation of leaders, so be sure to mentor and teach them well to prepare them for future roles.
Once you understand the different needs of the workers in your organization, make it a point to fill those needs as much as possible to create a workplace where employees feel valued and appreciated. This will boost morale, cohesiveness, and productivity in your workplace.
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