How to better motivate your staff to improve your business

You might believe that providing excellent glasses and lenses is the only way for an optometrist to win loyal customers. But so much of what you do is nothing to do with the products you sell – it’s about the service that you provide.

Your employees make a huge difference to the way that your business operates; having the right team can be the line between profit and loss. Even when you have a great team working with you, it can sometimes be the case that you could be doing more to ensure that your employees are motivated at all times.

A well-motivated team can do wonders for your customer service and sales. Some of the key benefits of motivating your staff include:

  • Improved morale
  • Increased productivity
  • A better team atmosphere
  • Fewer sick days
  • Management and employees in sync

Of course, every business wants to motivate their team but it’s not always as easy as it seems. Some business owners assume that money is the only motivator, but this is far from the case. There are many things you can do to motivate your staff and improve the whole of your business in the process.

Mistakes shouldn’t be punished

There are different kinds of mistakes, of course, but it is not always a good idea to punish employees for making errors at work. When a member of staff simply made a mistake because they were pushing themselves or trying something different that they thought would help the business, this isn’t something you want to discourage. Doing so can kill off their creativity and passion.

Of course, mistakes caused by laziness or negligence will need to be addressed, but punishment is rarely the right answer.

Provide constructive feedback

Many business owners believe that staff don’t like to get feedback on their performance – actually this generally isn’t the case at all. This is especially true of Millennial workers. While workers from older generations have appreciated feedback, Millennials prefer it on a more regular basis. There is evidence to suggest that while older generations preferred feedback on a quarterly or yearly basis, Millennials want it on a monthly or even weekly basis.

Typically, members of your team will want to learn and get better at their job. You can provide them with the feedback to help them do this.

Praise in public, criticise in private

While we’re on the subject of feedback, it’s important to remember that there is a difference between the ways that you should handle praise and criticism. It is always best to praise members of the team in public, letting other members of staff know what a great job that they are doing.

If you do need to give them negative feedback, then the opposite is true. You should talk to them quietly about this away from others. This avoids humiliating them, and gives them time to reflect on what they have been doing, and how to change it.

Keep them up-to-date on business performance

It is actually a really good idea to keep your team updated on the overall performance of the business. Many owners prefer to hold these details and don’t see the relevance of letting staff know, but it can actually be a great motivator. Seeing the business perform well can be a real boost to the team. Equally, knowing that the business could do with a little more help can push staff to go the extra mile.


It’s a great idea to gamify work for employees. A good way to do this is by setting targets and goals, and having specific milestones on the way. When employees know what they are working towards, they feel a great sense of achievement to get it done.

Optical Success Academy has produced amazing results in improving sales for independent optometrists. Understanding how to get staff to perform at a high level is a big part of what we do. Get in touch with us to learn more about what we could do for you.