One of the biggest things that can make or break a work environment is the culture of the company and job. 

“Work culture is important for the organization as it directly impacts the ability to attract and retain talent. A positive workplace is reflected in the positive work relationships which exist at the workplace; the concern and genuine care for each other.

A positive workplace will have a higher degree of employee engagement – as employees respond positively and actively to organizational initiatives. A negative workplace will be reflected in low energy and detached work environment with employees operating in insulated silos.” – Rajeev Bhardwaj

The best thing any business can do to foster a healthy work environment is to show the employees that come in to work their 9-5 Monday through Friday appreciation. Creating a motivating work environment is important for a business to survive and retain it’s most valuable employees. 

Seven Elements of Employee Motivation

Research that was conducted by Janine Kruger and Chantal Rootman showed that there are seven elements to employee motivation:

  1. Interesting and Meaningful Work
  2. Recognition and Feedback
  3. Employee Involvement
  4. Working Conditions
  5. Strong Leaders
  6. Company Policies and Environment
  7. Compensation

These 7 elements can be a building block for managers and leaders to build off of. This does not mean that it is one size fits all approach. Depending on the size of the company, employees should be approached individually to find out what motivates them and build a relationship with them. 

Interesting and Meaningful Work Culture

Meaningful work culture is the most important workplace motivator for employees. Help employees see how the work they do is meaningful and makes a difference.

Recognition and Feedback

Provide regular feedback to employees about their performance and leverage the power of employee recognition. This allows the employee to grow based on an honest peer review. This allows them to feel like their work hasn’t gone unnoticed.

Employee Involvement in the Work Environment

Create a work environment that fosters employee involvement. Employees will feel more motivated when they feel included in company decisions.

Working Conditions

Intentionally create a workplace with great work culture on the physical, social, and psychological levels. Working conditions include the atmosphere of the workplace, equipment, work hours, and other support factors. However, The most important source of support you can provide employees is a strong supervisor-employee relationship.

Strong Leaders

Strong leaders are the cornerstone of employee motivation, engagement, and performance. Focus your resources on developing strong leaders that leverage both support and accountability to engage employees and drive performance.

Company Policies and Environment

Promote an environment of workplace justice and fairness in the way you distribute resources, make decisions, and interact with employees.


Money doesn’t buy employee motivation. To create a truly motivating work environment, employ a more holistic approach in your rewards structure. Consider the total rewards approach.

Employee Appreciation

Employee Appreciation can come from all levels such as new hires, mid-senior management, to executives. When we look back at the 7 elements to employee motivation compensation was on the list. Compensation doesn’t always have to be in the form of money. Compensation can be in the form of benefits, vacation, or even gifts.

New Hires in the Work Environment

When it comes to new hires, first impressions by the company are important. Whether it be an exciting orientation or a “welcome to the company” gift such as a tote bag and tumbler.

Mid-Senior Managers

For the most part, mid-senior managers have been with the company for a while. They oversee multiple employees and make sure the operations are running smoothly.  An employee appreciation gift that would be great for a mid-senior manager is a wine set.


Executives run the company and it may seem like they might have it all. Executives deserve to be appreciated as well for making sure the company doesn’t go under. However, they make sure each decision can benefit the company as well as the employees. A good gift to show appreciation towards an executive would be a knife set.

To sum it up, the power of employee appreciation is important for a company to run smoothly, save money, and retain the best employees. Companies can practice and consistently implement those 7 elements to employee motivation. They will definitely see a rise in employee mood, participation, and overall work satisfaction.

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