Engaged employees are motivated employees. Unfortunately, about 70% of the workforce isn’t engaged with their work. The odds are good that the percentage of disengaged and, therefore, unmotivated employees is even higher among factory workers. Factory work is repetitive, and it’s all too easy to start phoning it in shift-after-shift. So, what can you do to keep your factory workers motivated?
Talk Mission, But Locally
Mission statements often miss the mark with factory workers, and it’s not hard to see why. Mission statements come out of corporate head offices. The same head offices that close factories and export those jobs overseas. Factory workers care about what happens locally, not globally. Ask workers about what they care about, and you’ll likely hear about some local charity or simply keeping a community afloat.
Takeaway: Find out what local mission the workers care about and then do everything you can to support that mission. The workers will back you.
Want to watch a workforce check out mentally? Treat them dismissively. Big companies tend to treat anyone not climbing the corporate food chain as second-class citizens of the company culture. Worse still, some companies treat factory workers are interchangeable cogs and view turnover as a failure on the part of employees of lower-rung managers. Offer workers some basic dignity. Treat them respectfully. They’ll show up ready to work hard every day.
Takeaway: Always remember that there’s a human being behind that nametag or uniform. It’ll make you more responsive to them, and they’ll reward that responsiveness with effort.
Encourage Bottom-Up Communication
Factory workers are the closest to the actual production process. That means they’re best positioned to see where processes break down, and reorganization can create the most benefit. Yet, changes to processes often happen from the top-down with mixed results. As far as possible, encourage bottom-up communication. This can mean altering some processes, but it also gives workers a voice in their daily lives. That can encourage more buy-in and more motivation.
Takeaway: It’s not enough to solicit that communication. You must also act on it and create visible, lasting changes when good ideas filter upwards.
Factory workers spend their days on repetitive and often physically demanding work. Those are ideal conditions for creating disengaged and unmotivated workers. You can help keep them motivated by finding out what local mission they care about, extending them some basic dignity, and encouraging bottom-up communication.
Can’t seem to find motivated workers despite taking steps to encourage an engaged and motivated workforce? Joynus can help you find factory workers who are ready to jump in and give their best every day.