We Asked Our Experts How To Motivate Staff

Check out what our mentors had to say and, if you have more questions, visit them at http://mentors.neo-rls.org/users


 Weekly meetings–include thanks and pep talk as well as issues, classes, meetings for the week.
 Kudos in internal newsletter about staff that has done “good” when they have accomplished something (even the ordinary going out of the way to help people counts).
 Relaying positive messages of thanks from teachers and administrators to staff, preferably in public.
 Positive comments to administrators about staff contributions to a presentation (computer/AV setup and problem-solving), speaker.
 Recognition of their achievements at a faculty meeting.
 Small decorations/gifts (inexpensive) for holidays.
 Flowers! Nothing brightens a mood, or a desk, like fresh flowers. I bought each some vases and would buy a bouquet and split it up among the staff (only 2-4 at any time). These were the best received.
 Annual lunch on a non-student day–my treat! Usually twice a year–fall and June.
 I think staff best remains motivated by having a stake in the outcome of their work. I think it is important to give staff the autonomy in whatever project or desk they are working on. Trust in their opinions and their ability to do their jobs. Having assigned tasks and clear goals to achieve helps keep staff on track and motivated to do their best.
 The single most important thing I do to get motivated is continuing education. Getting out and hearing what your peers are doing can really inspire you. Staying current by following blogs, Facebook groups or listservs also helps by providing new ideas and inspiration. There are amazing librarians out there sharing the awesome things they are doing. Find them and you will find motivation!
 An important way supervisors can help staff motivate themselves at work is by giving staff ownership in their job. Assignments should be meaningful, and staff should be empowered to use their own ideas and creativity to complete the tasks assigned. Initiative should be rewarded, even if it is just by the supervisor acknowledging that the staff member made the extra effort to add value to their work.
 Motivating yourself is easier with goals. Give yourself targets to shoot for. Make sure you have some short term and some long term. Be sure to brag about yourself. If someone asks you for information for a newsletter or blog post be sure to provide it. You work hard to build a good library program…make sure everyone knows about it. You will feel great when people recognize you and your work and you will want to do more.


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