Does having a clean office improve your profits and where am I going with this?

Most HR professionals recognise that happy employees are more effective, hence our performance equation mantra, happy employees = happy customers = happy profits.  Motivated employees are by default happier and many studies prove that employers with highly motivated workforces outperform their competitors.  But our recent research would indicate that many employers spend less on managing employee motivation than they do on office cleaning and I have yet to see the equation, clean office = happy customers = happy profits!

Lots of firms tell me that they invest heavily in employee engagement, which is appropriate, but of course different to employee motivation.  (Employees can be "engaged" whilst being in a state of low motivation.  In fact in the contact centre industry with lots of bright graduates doing relatively dull, repetitive jobs this is common).  Other employers cite significant commission and bonus payments as investments in employee motiovation, which of course they are not because these payments are regarded by employees as "part of my salary" and have little long term impact on employee motivation.

The 2012 Hay Survey into Reward offers some great insight on how employers from all walks of life view reward and  25% believe "that their reward policies are not fit for purpose".

The all time, number one tool for employers to manage empoloyee motivation is RECOGNITION.  I know it and you know it but it would appear that the leadership and management of many companies are struggling to do it.  According to a recent Gallup survey 65% of employees do not feel appreciated by their employers and as such are unlikely to be motivated to do a good job. 

Now don’t get me wrong, I like a nice clean and tidy office as much as the next person and I am not suggesting reducing cleaning standards, but on the basis that a tidy office has an unproven impact on the bottom line perhaps employers should address the balance and invest a little more on managing employee motivation?  

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