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How to Motivate Your Employees

culture leadership people Oct 31, 2023
Motivate your employees


One of the biggest challenges for leaders is how to motivate their employees, especially because depending on your type of leader, there are only so many things you can do if you are not the franchisee or the business owner

But don’t worry. You can still motivate your employees and create a positive culture of excellence, motivation, and excitement so that people strive to give their discretionary effort and go above and beyond what they’re getting paid for.

The good news is that you can instill that level of motivation in many different ways. The better is that some of them are listed in this blog post. 

Analyze which of them you can implement in your organization and which you are empowered to do. The ones that meet both criteria will be a good starting point.



It is said that the number one motivator for people is money. And yes, it's a great way to keep them happy. But raises should be given for more than that. 

  • If you give somebody more money, it should be attached to some sort of accomplishment. 

One of the things that we encourage our clients here at the American Franchise Academy is to create a salary strategy and career path. That way, employees know what to do to make more money. And, when they achieve that, they truly appreciate the increase because they work so hard for it.

Keep reading: When to give a raise to your employees, 4 scenarios to consider

If you want to motivate people with money, make sure that the extra pay is attached to an effort, whether it's employee performance, cross-training, or a promotion to the next level

  • A word of caution: do this fairly and consistently among all employees. Otherwise, something you think will motivate your people will actually demotivate them.



Don't diminish the value of titles because they are significant, especially for anybody below the CEO level. You can motivate your employees by creating a hierarchy or career path in your organization.

Even if you own a small franchise organization, operating a few units or maybe one unit, you can establish an employee hierarchy for your team members, associates, shift or team leaders, and elevate them whenever they outperform to make them feel good about themselves

This title designation can also come with a raise. That mix is a great motivator for people: not only will they want to get to those higher levels to earn more money, but the dignity of success and moving forward in their lives.

If you want to use this strategy to reward your team, make sure people deserve them. In other words, you should give them only if they truly earned it. 

Mini-tip: Do you have an employee profile for your business?



Having the opportunity to grow within the organization and knowing that while working here you can move forward and not stay at the starting level, is a very powerful motivator

Most people want to advance their careers to the next level, and having a clear path to do so inspires employees. 

  • Growth opportunities should be open and communicated to the entire organization.

Put them on paper and place them across the units so every employee can see that this career path is available to them. That way, even if they are not there right now, they will get motivated to work hard and get to the next level.

The motivator should also prevent them from underperforming and keep them on the straight and narrow because, if they don't follow the rules and do what they're supposed to do, the possibility of growth may escape.


  • This motivator is not just about treating employees with respect but considering them your equals. 

One thing that I've done throughout my career is that, even though I have grown in a hierarchy of levels, positions, titles, and pay, I've always made an effort to treat people as my equals.

We may have different roles, but this doesn't make me better than them. It just makes me more experienced and knowledgeable and as a consequence, I have accomplished more. But it doesn't mean that they cannot do exactly what I can.

If you see people as your equals, I promise they’ll appreciate it. That will motivate them to do a good job for you, someone who pushes them to be better, and who supports them in accomplishing whatever they want.

No job is beneath you! This is the first lesson I learned in my franchise journey



People are always looking for ways to fit in and belong to something. So, try to create a new organization in each of your units, a place where people can feel welcomed, appreciated, and valued just for being there.

If your team members, especially your leaders, have this sentiment and feel they're crucial, they’ll be motivated to stay in your organization

People are motivated to do a good job for the team that they belong to. This is a challenge, especially nowadays with people feeling so disconnected from each other. But it is worth the effort: whatever activities and actions you implement to make people feel like they belong, they will come back times for you.

Don’t miss: Team success lessons from the first Thunderbird Woman pilot



Keep people motivated and excited about working in your organization by recognizing their efforts and rewarding them when they do something good. 

Just as I mentioned earlier, you have to do this evenly and consistently among the entire organization. 

Something you can do, if you have good reporting, is find out who has the highest average ticket every month so you can reward and recognize them, announcing it to the whole organization. And whenever you promote an employee, share the news with their peers. 

If you do that, not only will they get motivated and excited. Their fellow team members will also get inspired because those growth opportunities, rewards, and recognitions are real.

  • This is a great way to motivate your people at zero costs and with a huge impact on your organization! 


As you can see, there are many ways in which you can motivate your people. You can choose one or more, but I warn you: whatever you implement, it has to be sustainable over time. If you start something that motivates and excites the team and then stop it, you will truly demotivate everyone. 

That’s why you have to guarantee that whatever you use is easy to execute, that you can do it consistently and fairly across the organization, and that you can do it forever. That way, you’ll be able to keep the motivation and the trust high

Learn more ways in which you can motivate your people and how to implement policies and procedures to bring your organization to the next level with the help of the American Franchise Academy.

We provide training and development for leaders across the organization, whether unit managers, district managers, or franchisees, so they can achieve their business and financial goals. 

To learn more about our programs, click here!

Get more tips on what you can do to thrive and operate a successful franchise by following us on all social platforms, including our YouTube channel and podcast.


  • Aside from money, what other thing could motivate your employees?
  • How many of these strategies can you implement, considering your leadership level?
  • How are you helping your employees to grow within your company?
  • What can you do to have people truly belong to your organization?