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Bonuses ‘not the best way to motivate staff’

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Just over one in ten workers have said that a financial bonus was a key way to get them motivated in work, according to a new survey.

The Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) spoke to 1,000 employees – with only 13 per cent admitting a bonus would have an effect on their motivation.

Job enjoyment was listed as the most popular reason why staff want to work harder – with 59 per cent of respondents citing this as their main motivator in the workplace.

However, despite instant financial incentives scoring low on the survey, half of those questioned said that the size of their basic salary did have an impact.

Other factors which seemed to make a difference were whether the respondent got on well with their colleagues, how they were treated by those in charge and how much of a say they had in their own work.

These emotional reasons behind what drives staff to work well highlight the importance of social interaction among workers – something that can be easily achieved with a serviced office.

Based on its findings, the ILM has suggested that bonuses of nearly £37 billion that were paid out by UK firms last year were likely to have had no impact on the vast majority of those who received them in terms of encouraging them to work harder or be more committed to their job.

ILM chief executive Charles Elvin said: “In the past year, UK companies have collectively spent an astronomical amount on financial incentives for their staff, but this report is telling us there are far more effective and cost-effective, ways to motivate people.”

A recent report by Deloitte highlighted that more workers are beginning to value flexible working practices and this suggests that more businesses can use mobile working to motivate their staff.