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Source: Zoetis news release

Managers can have the biggest influence on employee engagement. It's been said that employees typically don't leave the company, they leave their managers.

So how can managers and owners focus on keeping employees motivated and committed to their jobs this year? Managers should ensure employees understand the vision and direction of the operation, business or veterinary clinic. This can help them feel like part of the team and give them a better understanding of how their role contributes to overall business success.

With that in mind, here are five things managers can do to help keep their employees motivated to excel:

1. Develop leaders
Improving engagement begins with the leadership. Engaged employees are fully involved and enthusiastic about their work and committed to the organization's goals and values. Show employees how they play a part in the overall success of the operation and health of the animals.

2. Invest in training
Training helps employees feel like they have the tools and skills to do the job well. It also helps reduce frustrations, accidents and timely and costly errors. Without proper training, you're risking more than employees leaving, you're creating a liability.

3. Clear expectations
It's important for employees to not only learn how to do tasks well but also to understand their role. Tie the day-to-day tasks of employees to a bigger cause. That will allow employees to be able to see very clearly how they can contribute and what's expected from them at work.

4. Continuous feedback
Balance constructive criticism and positive feedback. It's just as important to provide someone with timely, corrective feedback as it is to recognize something good. Providing appreciation and criticism lets employees know their actions affect the company and can motivate employees to do the job better.

5. Communicate effectively
Employees can get discouraged when they believe their ideas aren't being heard. Communication can't be one-way. Help employees feel valued by talking to them and listening to their questions. Let them have a share of voice in the company.

Learning how to lead and motivate people is vital to the success of every manager and, ultimately, every business. Building trust and telling employees how they contribute to an organization's success help to keep them devoted to their work. Employees need to not only see the big picture but also understand how their role matters. The more your employees know how their work makes a difference, the more they'll care.

For more tips to help develop your leadership, employees, operation or business, visit

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