What motivates Employees to be more Innovative?

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Two Factor Theory > Best Practices > What motivates Employees to be more Innovative?

What motivates Employees to be more Innovative?
Jaap de Jonge, Editor, Netherlands
In the current crisis, it's important to keep your innovation effort at a high level. Martha E. Mangelsdorf writes in MITSloan Management Review Vol 40 No 3 p. 24 about an analysis by Professors Henry Sauermann and Wesley M. Cohen on what makes employees tick to be innovative. Out of 8 different types of work benefits (salary, fringe benefits, job security, intellectual challenge, independence, opportunities for advancement, responsibility and contribution to society) intellectual challenge was strongest associated with being innovative. Job security the weakest.
Why? The authors suggest that having a preference for challenge may lead scientists to select more demanding and innovative projects. Or the type of motivation may influence certain cognitive processes in the brain such as creative thinking. You can download the survey results for $5 here.

Motivation and EI
Paul Steele
The above Hygiene Theory is becoming a bit dated. If employers really want to motivate staff they have to understand that motivation is an internal cognitive process and consider the emotional intelligence (competence) of the employee in regards to motivation.

Spiritual Inner Development as Motivational Factor
Sergiy Kadulin
I think that the strongest motivational factor for innovation is spiritual individual growth, by which I mean
(1) Developing deeper understanding of your self and
(2) Broader understanding of the world around you.
It is true intellectual challenge, by far exceeding other motivational factors. Why? Because it provides for the best connection to the right side of human's brain.

Motivation in Industrial Context
Madan Gopal Agarwal, Business Consultant, India, Member
Every individual is unique in terms of needs and wants irrespective of category of factor it falls under. Degree of fulfillment of individual's stated and implied needs determines his degree of motivation. In a given organization, one needs to map these for each individual and then provide requisite inputs, both in general and in particular so as to increase overall level of motivation of all the people. One dissatisfied person breeds more dissatisfied persons.

Motivation Theories are Guideline
The above factors are a good guideline to make sure that the company is in line with the standard, somehow each and every individual are unique and what may motivate employee A may not motivate employee B and so on. These theories help the enterprise, somehow in today's fast changing environment it is a challenge to motivate a given workforce. For example in a workforce where the majority is young it will not be security but rather the environment that will prevail, that is camaraderie, flexibility to study, welfare, listening to music while working etc.

Motivation and EI
Trevor Malele
While the autors' findings suggest that intellectual challege is a strong motivator, iI think it cannot be solely isolated as a determinant. In the current global economic downturn, you may find that a worker's salary may not cover an employee's needs, so salary may resurface as a motivational source.

Employees can be more innovative if
mesh N. Jhawar
1. You give them freedom to fail.
2. Employees are trusted.
3. Resources are provided as and when required.
4. Nurture your employees as a gardener takes care of the plants in the garden.

Leadership and Communication
Rocio Dextre
Sometimes employees can have disagreements about what direction they may take even when they have resources, freedom and they are trusted. A demotivated employee can disincline to other, it is emotionally contagious. However a strong leader can take action after identifying and analyzing causes of discomfort, so that a decision making process may look for a mutual benefit and new goals. Positive and transparent communication can put in track the employees motivation to be more innovative.

Motivate for Innovation
Patrick Senadzo
That is true but to motivate employees to be innovative is also required a leader who is emotionally intelligent and sees delegation as an important element to unearth talents among employees.

Spiral Dynamics
Rodrigo Corte-Real Oliveira
Dr. Clare Graves created the Spiral Dynamics which divided individuals into 7 Levels of Consciousness. Being the 1st e.g. 'Cave Man' and the last one 'Spiritual Guru'. This Methodology has been applied in Organizations HR Management to better understand their employees - and subsequently improving their work environment according to their level of consciousness. Applying this method you can motivate an employee in a much more accurate way. Note: I have applied this method in Industrial context (to reduce waste) and the outcomes are incredible - most likely I will use it again in the future.

Innovation is dampened by Systems and Processes
Vivek Joshi
I spend a lot of time advising companies on building systems and processes. However, one of the side-effects of building systems/processes is dampening innovation in the organization. There are methods available to build processes in innovation, and these methods are useful in the appropriate circumstances and if implemented well. The systems will improve the efficiency and effectiveness of innovation. But it is important to realize that the bedrock of innovation is creative thinking. Systems by their very nature will tend to dampen creativity.

Participatory management system
Samuel Ebeke
These days workers tend to want to have a sense of belonging in the organization. They want not just to perform on their job details but to be seen as contributor in cross functional strategies. Employees are more motivated when they are treated as co-owners of the business.

Employee Innovation
Fred Asiedu Cudjoe
I have been practicising the philosophy of "if you don't try you try to fail" in my office and it's working well. It's really bringing out some new interesting ideas. These days most employees are are happier when they are given the chance to come out with something out of their own ingenuity.

Innovation is Culture...
Vamsee Godavarthy, Human resources, India, Member
I believe all human beings can be innovative.
Create the healthy environment and urge to harness their thought process in the right direction.
Motivate employees to participate / involve, share ideas, share goals, trust them, give them room to fail (I believe all the innovations on the earth are not first shot success), appreciate for smaller or bigger things they achieve in group... In simple "promote the culture to think freely and innovate"...

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