As a business owner, you care about your company; and are willing to put in the hours and the effort to ensure that it’s running smoothly, and operating at its best.

Unfortunately, though, your employees are unlikely to be passionate about your organization as you are –they simply don’t have the same level investment in the company that you do. A recent Gallop Poll, though, showed employee engagement to be even lower than many business owners might think. The poll found that 49.5 percent of employees were “not engaged” at work, while 16.5 percent were actively disengaged.

Having an engaged and motivated workforce is necessary for your company’s continued growth and success. Not to mention it will also have a significant impact on profits and your bottom line. But how you can you boost engagement and increase employee motivation?

If you’re looking to create an engaged and motivated workforce, there are a few things that you’ll want to put into practice. These tips will help you to cultivate an environment that rewards hard workers, allowing you to attract; and retain top talent.

Trust Them

If you don’t trust your employees, then you have bigger problems than simply trying to motivate them! Show your team that you trust them enough to allow them to make key decisions and give them responsibilities –and then step back and leave them to it. Entrusting your workers with more responsibility is a vote of confidence that will go a long way towards motivating them.

Establish Clear Objectives

Just because you can see the big picture doesn’t mean your employees can. It’s important to give your team clear objectives, and to ensure that they’re clear on everything their job description entails. Nothing will demotivate workers more than having unclear direction about their role and responsibilities.

Seek Out Their Feedback

Your workers are your eyes and ears on the ground, and feedback from them can be invaluable; showing you where your company is succeeding, and highlighting areas that could be improved. Asking for feedback from your workers and taking their concerns seriously will also help them to feel more connected with your company, leading to improved employee loyalty and motivation.

Help to Make Their Jobs Easier

Providing your team with the tools and training that they need to do their jobs well will help them to do their very best work; allowing them to excel in their roles. If it’s practical, you could also consider instituting flexibility, allowing them to work from home one or two days a week, or to choose their own hours could help them to find a work-life balance, helping them to show up to work motivated, and at their best.

Show Appreciation

When asked what leaders could do more of to improve engagement, 58 percent of respondents replied “give recognition.” Showing appreciation for your team costs you nothing –but this recognition can go a long way toward encouraging and motivating your team to their best. As consultant and speaker Tim Brown notes in A Magazine, “Recognition and praise gives employees a reason to be motivated, which brings outstanding results.”

Reward Them

Rewarding employees for a job well done can help to encourage them and keep them going. This is due largely to the fact that rewards are a form of recognition. Even small rewards like a gift card as thanks for work on a big project, can help your team to feel appreciated, and valued, boosting their motivation. Just remember to treat your team fairly –and reward everyone who helped with the project equally, since few things demotivate workers faster than favoritism.

Offer Opportunities to Grow

Finally, give your employees the opportunity to climb the ladder within your company. Instead of consistently looking to hire from the outside, try to source talent from within. Offering opportunities for advancement will motivate you team, and encourage them to stay for longer, improving your retention rates.

Don’t overlook the importance of a motivated workforce! An engaged team will lead to increased productivity –and better customer service, and will help to create a thriving work environment that that everyone enjoys working in. This, in turn, will help to improve your employee retention rates, and help your company to attract –and keep top talent for longer.