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Disengaged staff? 3 tips for line managers

Reduced productivity remains a hot topic for most businesses and a recent research compiled by Sage People found that only one in three people at work are fully motivated and productive.

Millennials highlighted that a positive working environment drives higher engagement and production. Given that the workforce is soon to be dominated by this group, it is clear that employers need to take action now to motivate their staff.

If you’re a line manager and you’re finding it difficult to engage your team, we have used some research from Forbes and suggest 3 ways to reverse disengagement and help team members towards productivity and success.


Workplace conversations are important in engagement. If you have noticed that individual productivity has declined or that engagement has lowered, take action and start a conversation with the employee.

Try to work out what drives the individual – what do they want out of work? Is there anything they dislike? Encourage them to get 360 Degree Feedback so they understand their strengths better and also recognise their areas for development. By discussing their needs with them in an honest and open way, they will see that you are interested in their career development.

Better understanding of your personnel can help you can learn what drives them and adapt your management style to fit their needs. Together you can encourage improved performance.


Give employees the opportunity to open up about why they are feeling disengaged. Give them the time and space and listen rather than just telling them your expectations. Use whatever insight you can gain from this to motivate and inspire.


If employee motivation and engagement are a trend within your team, it may be time to start with the woman or man in the mirror.

Are you as the leader doing the most you can to keep the work engaging? Do you know your employees? Are you taking the time to manage individuals as well as thinking of profits?

Evaluate yourself through a self-assessment of your skills and styles, and get 360 Degree Feedback, and compare the two. Does your self assessment agree with the views of your teams and peers? Have you rated yourself more highly in some areas? Or perhaps you’re doing some things better than you think, and you should do more of those!

Helping your team by focusing on their development and yours may help to re-engage their performance – and yours!