Human relations experts have revealed that small time business owners need to try other ways to engage their staff and get them working to their full potential. Such owners are unlikely to have the budget for giving substantial pay rises or cash bonuses.
However, according to a recent Mercer Survey, Fiona Reed, principal and head of talent management at Mercer, warns that small businesses still need to pay competitive rates to keep employees, with pay the most important factor in a person's commitment to an organisation,
The Australian survey, which revealed that 40 percent of people were thinking of leaving their job, found other factors that influenced staff motivation included how good a fit they are for their job, their career path and flexible work practices.
Reed has also given five low-cost tips on how to motivate staff, Stuff.co.nz reported.
Firstly, sometimes the best ideas on how to motivate an individual staff member can come from the staff member themselves. More broadly, it's important to invest time in staff, says Reed, "to engage with them in a really constructive and meaningful way".
Secondly, everybody loves to be told they've done a good job - it makes people feel good and boosts morale.
Thirdly, small to medium businesses usually won't have the scope to reward ambitious and well-performing staff with promotions. But they can still motivate staff by helping with their career development, says Narellel Hess, organisational psychologist at human relations consultancy Challenge Consulting.
Fourthly, small businesses are sometimes better placed to make flexible working arrangements for staff than some large organisations.
Lastly, employees want to know that the work they're doing is contributing to the success of the company.