How to motivate your colleagues  

Do you ever take a moment to pause and think about how your team are coping? Is there a positive atmosphere when you’re in the office, or are your co-workers seeming a little flat? If your answer is the latter of the two, then it may be time to take matters into your own hands and try to motivate your colleagues yourself 

The good news is, your attitude and behaviour can have a massive impact on how your fellow employees feel about work!  

What’s more, motivating your colleagues will improve your overall team dynamic. So, when you have to collaborate with co-workers on projects, your life will be a whole lot easier. Check out our guide on how to motivate your colleagues if you’re in need of a little inspiration!  

Set a good example  

If your colleagues are having a moan, then try not to get brought down to their level. They may just be having a bad day; but it’s important that you try and break the cycle of negativity.  

A bad mindset is hard to fix. But if you can, counteract their comments with encouraging alternatives. If that’s too difficult to do repeatedly, then just don’t say anything at all and make it clear that you don’t agree.  

Eventually, your colleagues will get the hint that you’re not interested. Hopefully, they’ll start to see the situation from your point of view and even cut it out completely! You may be able to motivate them without even realising you’re doing it.  

Recognise their achievements  

One of the reasons that your colleagues might be feeling demotivated could be that they feel as if nobody notices their contributions.  

Although some argue that you shouldn’t receive praise for simply doing your job, there’s something to be said for recognising a task well done. Whether that’s for getting a project completed ahead of schedule, or if someone goes above and beyond for you.  

Whether you send them a friendly email or bring up their good work in a team meeting; don’t underestimate the value of appreciating their efforts. You might just make their day and they’ll be motivated to do the same again in the future 

Listen to their ideas  

Another reason why your colleagues may be lacking motivation is because you’re not listening to their ideas. Therefore, you’re insinuating that their input isn’t important. Just because we’re at work, it doesn’t mean people don’t have feelings. Show that you value their opinions by thanking them and putting positive suggestions into action.  

To truly listen to somebody, actively engage with what they’re saying and ask questions. Not only will this let your colleague know that what they have to say matters, it’s simply polite! Especially if your co-worker is helping you out with a joint project.  

Showing an interest in your colleague’s input will inspire them to work harder and offer fresh ideas. So ultimately, you’ll motivate them to do better. 

Compromise is key  

While you may be listening to others’ ideas, are you also willing to compromise? When brainstorming, remain open to the fact that someone else may also have a good idea. It’s not always easy; especially if you’re keen to get your point across. But everybody’s thoughts should be heard and considered.  

What’s more, if you’re flexible and willing to compromise, you can work as a team to bounce off each other and create something even better than the original plan. This will help motivation by ensuring that everyone’s ideas are utilised – and confrontation is avoided!  

Get them out of their comfort zone 

How do you motivate a colleague if they never speak up or involve themselves with the team? Perhaps they don’t like to put themselves forward and it could be that they’re missing out on some great opportunities.   

Even if they aren’t the loudest person in the room, most people benefit from feedback. If you spot an opening where you can introduce your colleague to the conversation, then why not give them this nudge out of their comfort zone? 

Especially if you know they’ve had a great idea or have got more to offer; they may appreciate being given an opening to talk. Just make sure that you choose the right moment to shine the limelight on your colleague! 

Get to know them 

There may be a personal reason behind your colleague’s lack of motivation; you never know what’s going on behind closed doors. Of course, they may not want to share the ins and outs of their private life. But at least give them the option to talk. 

Even if they decline, they’ll appreciate you showing an interest in them. You don’t have to be best friends, but you should try to get along. Small gestures like offering to give them a lift or share lunch will go a long way.  

Helping to create a friendly environment can help colleagues who are overwhelmed or stressed to feel more motivated.  

Want to motivate your colleagues? 

Stay positive, try some of these tips and you might just notice an increase in your colleagues’ motivation levels. When your team is in a positive mindset, you’ll achieve more. Plus, work will generally be a more pleasant place to be.  

While it may seem like you’re fighting an upward battle to begin with, don’t lose hope – increasing motivation can be a slow process. Whatever the case, maintain your own sunny disposition and your presence will motivate others to be their best selves!  

Content team

About Content team

Our team of career experts are committed to helping your job search and ensuring you get the most from your career.

Resignation guide: Tips for quitting your job in 2020


How to dress for a job interview and find success in 2020


How to reignite your job search for 2020

Search Jobs