6 Work Enriching Principles That Don’t Require Money

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Are you focused on job satisfaction or typical human resource items? If you want employee satisfaction, focus on 6 work-enriching principles.

Why is so much time spent on things that will not increase job satisfaction? Because it takes time and energy to focus on items that really do impact job satisfaction. The 6 work enriching principles require more time, but the payoff for people is enormous. Even better, the organization directly benefits. 

These six excellent principles were developed from Frederick Herzberg's outstanding work, "One More Time: How Do You Motivate Employees?". It is an article that deserves to be read and reviewed often.

6 Work-enriching Principles

Impossible Dream?

Is it an impossible dream to be motivated by your work, or know how to help others be motivated by their work? Some people think so. That leaves most people chasing after more pay, benefits, plush surroundings, and other perks as they pursue satisfaction. Unfortunately, those very things are fleeting satisfaction at best.

Of course, those things are not irrelevant, they do need attention, but they will not create satisfaction. Okay, then, what's the problem? They don't reach the internal needs that drive satisfaction.

As stated earlier, these 6 work-enriching principles require work, and it is easier to focus on pay and benefits than on the REAL motivational items - like...

  • Interesting, challenging work
  • Opportunity to grow and achieve
  • Recognition of work done well

If you would rather watch than read, click on the video below to hear about the 6 work enriching principles (GREATS).

The 6 Work-enriching Principles

Below are the 6 work-enriching principles; you can remember them by the acronym GREATS. You can apply these principles to those you lead or yourself by discussing them with your supervisor.

Of course, your supervisor may not accept these principles. And the bad news is that it isn't unusual. Because implementing these ideas can create anxiety or fear that performance will drop and (or) they will have less control.

So, if that's your situation, see which of the 6 work-enriching principles they will accept, then implement them to see the difference it makes. If your supervisor doesn't want any of them, you have an excellent opportunity to grow in your self-governance of your attitude!

Okay, let's see how to enrich your work and the work of those you supervise!

Give the Complete or More of the Process

People thrive on the ability to make decisions for themselves. So, as a leader, look for ways to give responsibility for the whole or, at least, more of a process. See how much of the unit of work they can handle. You might need to take smaller steps to see what they can or cannot handle. And help them understand that the more responsibility they have, the more freedom you provide and the more self-governance they will need to do well.

Reduce / Remove Controls

Maybe you can't give the whole process or unit of work, but you probably can reduce or remove controls to provide more freedom and autonomy. As you may see, these first two steps enhance a person's ownership of the work. It helps make the work theirs, instead of "doing work for the MAN!"

Enable New Task Choice

A leader develops people. So, instead of requiring each person to do the same thing all the time, engineer and organize ways to allow variety. You can find a way to let them choose new, more complex tasks. Doing that provides you insight into the talents and thinking of the people. Better yet, it helps you identify those who show more initiative.

Challenge in a job is a critical component that makes work enjoyable. Too much challenge or too little challenge tends to demotivate. It takes work to identify and give them choices that provide varying degrees of difficulty and challenge. Doing that will help them gain confidence as they see they can take on new things and do them well.

Assign Specialized Tasks

GR8 Leaders pay attention to the people they work with. They get insights from talking with them; they note their skills and look for opportunities to enhance their capacity.

Since innovation is often a difference maker, assign specialized tasks to invite individuals to become experts in a tool, process, or technique. Help them become more valuable to the team and their pursuits.

Transmit Information Directly

A simple method to help work be more meaningful is to provide immediate feedback about the work product. That may mean quicker input from you, but more importantly, direct feedback from work itself.

Unfortunately, this gets misused by misguided supervisors. They believe they need to have the information first; otherwise, they can't justify their title or position.

If you want to help increase productivity, people need to know whether their work is good or not. It's like the spell checker on computers. You don't need to wait for someone to read a misspelled word and tell you about it. The computer gives you immediate feedback that it's incorrect.

So, look for ways to provide that report directly to them or provide systems that give immediate feedback about their work product.

Structure and Encourage Teamwork

Multiple research studies show people want to belong to a group. When you promote WE and help reduce ME thinking, you develop bonds that help people enjoy being at work. Of course, that requires work to help people develop good values, treat others with respect, be accountable, and be self-governing. On the other hand, not doing that limits teamwork and belonging.

And, essential to belonging is seeing that you are part of something bigger. So, that is where you do your work to provide a clear link of every job to the organization's purpose.

Finally, try these 6 work-enriching principles - it seldom requires money to start. Please send me your ideas on what works or doesn't work for you. The key for me and, I hope for you, is to learn how to motivate people without resorting to the use of fear or reward!


autonomy, belong to a group, challenge, control of the process, external motivation, internal motivation, job challenge, job competence, job satisfaction, maximizing self-governance, motivation, pay and benefits

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