Motivating employees can help agencies do more with less

Friday - 5/20/2011, 3:49pm EDT

Andrew Blumenthal, IT and thought leader

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By Jolie Lee
Federal News Radio

How can you maximize a limited budget? Motivating your staff is one way.

Andrew Blumenthal, an IT and thought leader, said according to an article in this month's Harvard Business Review, managers make four common mistakes. (This article is not available online. To read the article, you must subscribe to the print edition.)

  1. Managers listen to what employees have to say but don't take the suggestions seriously.

  2. Managers don't assign clear roles and responsibilities.

  3. Managers waste employees' time.
    "There's nothing more frustrating than having a manager have them spin their wheels on something that will never be used," Blumenthal said.

  4. Managers don't explain shifts in strategies.

Blumenthal said employees want to know that their work is contributing to the agency's overall mission.

"It really all comes down to one thing - a sense of purpose people need," he said.

Employees also want to be able to grow and be challenged in their work, he said.

Blumenthal added, "Of course, a good compensation package doesn't hurt either."

Blumenthal blogs at Total CIO. He serves as Chief Technology Officer at the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.