5 Things That Motivate Employees to Go Above and Beyond

The 5 Things That Motivate Employees to Go Above and Beyond

Every business owner imagines having a “dream team” of employees — people who consistently go the extra mile at work. If your team is falling short of that fantasy, maybe it’s because you’re not providing the push they need to give 110 percent. A study by Globoforce has some insights into what it takes to make employees go above and beyond the call of duty.

Feelings that Motivate Employees to Go Above and Beyond

It’s all about the employee experience, according to the study. Specifically, there are five feelings that make employees more likely to put in extra effort, more likely to perform at higher levels and less likely to quit their jobs.
1. Belonging — feeling part of a team, group or organization
2. Purpose — understanding why one’s work matters
3. Achievement — a sense of accomplishment in the work that one does
4. Happiness — a pleasant feeling in and around work
5. Vigor — energy, enthusiasm and excitement at work

How to Create the Five Feelings

What can you, as the boss, do to achieve the ideal employee experience in your workplace? The study identifies four factors.


If you want to create a positive employee experience, you’ve got to truly believe that employees matter in helping your business move forward and achieve its goals. From the employee’s point of view, this means providing clear direction about where the business is headed so your team understands how their jobs relate to the company’s overall goals. Business owners and managers also need to provide personal commitment and support for individuals and teams. Let your employees know you have their backs.


Today’s employees expect their employers to show integrity, authenticity and transparency, both to them and the customers. You and your managers need to walk the walk, not just talk the talk. In addition, having supportive relationships with coworkers greatly improves employees’ experiences at work. Foster cooperation, not competition, among your employees, and create opportunities for employees to bond with each other both on and off the job.

The Work Itself

Employees want to feel their work is meaningful and their skills are being used to the fullest. They also want to receive feedback, recognition for performance and opportunities for professional development. Overall, employees want reinforcement that what they are doing is making a difference to the company as a whole. Giving employees regular, ongoing feedback and recognition will help them feel satisfied with their work.

The Person

Employees have higher expectations than ever for the workplace experience — including being treated as people, with opinions that matter and lives outside of work. Employees who have input into how their work is done (or have the freedom to decide how to do it) have more positive employee experiences. So do those who believe management listens to and values their ideas.  Finally, employees have better experiences when they can manage work in a way that gives them time for personal priorities like family, friends, hobbies and just recharging their batteries. Wherever possible, give employees the autonomy to make decisions about their work and the flexibility to balance their jobs with their personal lives.

By creating a better experience for your employees, you’ll create better results for your business.

Successful Employees Photo via Shutterstock

Rieva Lesonsky Rieva Lesonsky is a Columnist for Small Business Trends covering employment, retail trends and women in business. She is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Visit her blog, SmallBizDaily, to get the scoop on business trends and free TrendCast reports.