• News
  • Columns
  • Interviews
  • BW Communities
  • Events
  • BW TV
  • Subscribe to Print
  • Editorial Calendar 19-20
BW Businessworld

7 Mantras To Keep Your Startup Team Motivated, Engaged

In a startup where everything is new, the employees will have to adapt to the culture being visualized by the Founders and the senior management

Photo Credit :


Startups are at an exciting stage today. There are a lot of them coming up offering unique products and services to the customers and trying to make their mark in the industry . . . that means the workforce is agile, competitive, having a chilled-out environment but sometimes the stress just can be too much to handle.  At times like these CEOs & Founders of start-ups are at loss to find means to keep the employees satisfied with high morale. Startups may plan for success but the real success completely depends on the first set of employees that come together to lay the foundation of the organization. More often than not, the founders and leaders have to keep the team motivated to swim through the path less treaded.

Here are 7 mantras that work to keep the team spirit high, motivated, and energetic:

1  Extended Induction

The most important day in any employee's tenure is their induction day in the organization and it needs to be handled very carefully. Introduction to their profile, personal interests, hobbies, previous experience and related information should be shared with all the employees so that other people can look for similarities and break the ice on the first day itself. Within the first week itself, there must be a team outing so that the new member of the team is made to feel home and the entire team can bond well. These outings assist in breaking the monotony and help in bringing the new member up to speed with the work.

2 Esprit-de-corps 

As the term suggests, dividing the competition is an intelligent thing but dividing your own team is like digging your own grave. It is very essential for the employees of a startup to build a culture around izzat of the organization and they must be made to feel that their organization is the best. One of the important ways to achieve this is through regular feedback about the positioning and branding of the organization by the CEO and Founder. Two-fold training of the employees also achieves it which enables them to take on a higher role and cross training by the senior members to increase the subject knowledge so that they can make contributions in each department. Training must be formal & employees should be motivated enough to attend the same for self-improvement. Building and maintaining izzat also involves the management taking care of not only the physical & mental well-being of the individuals but also their family.

3 Creativity
Creativity is coming up with out of the box ideas and finding smart ways to finish work without compromising with the quality. Even if one creative idea is accepted and implemented by the management, it raises the confidence, morale, and loyalty of the employee. Every employee must come up with a creative idea in any department once a month and this should be made mandatory. The ideas should be analyzed by the management and feedback must be given to the employees so that they can come with better and more ideas next time. Creativity keeps the mind engaged and forces everyone to achieve the impossible . . . eventually providing unimaginable satisfaction. Also, brain storming sessions with the CEO, Founders, and senior management brings a fresh wave of energy in the employees, which assists in betterment of work culture, development of new solutions or products and enhancing the quality of the work done.

4 Fun Day

One of the most trusted ways to engage the employees is regular planning of Team Outings or Fun Days. This can also lead to monotony sometimes but to break this there are multiple ways to spice them up . . . such as by having a weekly fun Friday where the onus of arranging activities and games must be put on the employees so that they can collaborate and come up with interesting and fun games to relieve stress, increase team bonding and productivity. This leads to knowing the colleagues better and making the work environment pleasant. The more fun days you plan, the more involved your employees will get with the organization and its growth.

5  Work Culture

One of the most debatable topics of discussion has been whether the timings of the organization should be strict or flexible. With experience, it has been observed that there is no positive impact on the work culture, retention, and performance of the employees. A place where the quality and completion of the assigned tasks matter is more preferred as there is no strictness on the employees to clock in hours, they can either work out of the office, out of any café or home when required. This does make them relaxed when it comes to being disciplined in terms of timings but they unknowingly end up working longer than required because of the work assigned to them. This flexible timing rule makes them focus on their work more rather than just worrying out completing daily hours.

6 Feedback

Every one of us has strengths and weaknesses, it is for the organization to leverage the strengths and assist in improving upon the weakness. One of the secrets to supreme leadership is getting extra ordinary work out of ordinary people and the trusted way to achieve this is by carrying out regular honest feedback sessions with the employees and timely appraisals. A fifteen days appraisal during probationary period and thereafter quarterly-where both formal and informal appraisals are important for the overall improvement of the employees. During the appraisal, management can set new targets, thereby, giving them new challenges. This helps both, where through personal growth an employee drives the overall growth of the organization.

7 Critique
There is nothing like a perfect employee. Constructive criticism should be highly encouraged; as for a peer to accept critique and improve by implementing the suggestions not only brings out the best in people but also maintains the equilibrium of the work and personal growth. Constructive criticism should be accompanied by two to three possible solutions within the resources of the company. This culture brings about self-realization and the employee understands the circumstances under which the leaders are working. This leads to overall 'joy' with ready acceptance of leadership discussions.

Often the human mind resists change. In a startup where everything is new, the employees will have to adapt to the culture being visualized by the Founders and the senior management. However, culture should be aligned with the businesses goals of the organization.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

Tags assigned to this article:
startup opinion entrepreneurship

Brigadier Manoranjan Singh

The author is Head Functional Operations in ShepHertz Technologies

More From The Author >>