Unremarkable but Crucial: Motivating Employees in Business as Usual Work
School of Business, University of Western Australia.
Keywords: Motivation, Management, Employee performance, Retention, Work satisfaction, Organisational behaviour.
‘Business as usual’ (BAU) tasks refers to the daily, mundane but necessary operational tasks performed by companies both large and small. While technology and automation have gone a large way towards reducing its necessity, some tasks still need to be performed by a human. Employees have typically shunned such roles as uninteresting, unrewarding, and unlikely to lead to career growth or recognition within the company. This in turn leads to low levels of motivation when performing such tasks, giving rise to a greater risk of mistakes being made, poor performance, or turnover as employees shun such work. This paper examines one typical team in the Singapore finance industry, highlighting the difficulties of motivating employees in performing such unremarkable but crucial tasks, and proposing some possible solutions that may be adopted. It is hoped that this article will give some insight to line managers in how to motivate employees to perform unremarkable but crucial BAU tasks.