Motivation is NOT about manipulation! Rather, it’s about consistently doing the right thing, day after day, and inspiring your team to do the right things right along with you, ensuring their long-term success. Manipulating your team to do things against their will works, but only for a very short while, and it’s wrong the whole time. Don’t go there….
Inspire your team to motivate them, talk to them about pursuing ambitious goals, even those that might be beyond what they might have identified for themselves on their own. Encourage your team. Challenge them to WANT to win for the entire team. That’s a great start. Share your values with your team, and help them to see value in the goals that you choose to pursue. When their values align with your own, they will help you drive action to achieve the meaningful goals. Make it a point to discover and understand your associates’ values. When values align, magic happens for teams and businesses.
Remember that each of us is different in what motivates us and also in those things which do NOT motivate us. It’s not always about money and compensation all the time. Human beings are NOT coin-operated robots, and we’re typically not one dimensional. You can motivate some of the people some of the time with compensation incentives, and you will enjoy good results, some of the time. Incentives depend upon a person’s motivational profile, and they only work when the individual is motivated by extrinsic motivators. They typically will have less of a desired effect upon those of us who are Intrinsically motivated. I have met a great number of people who work hard and work diligently because they want to do the right things, and they want to serve others, like their customers.
Think in terms of understanding the motivational profile of every one of your teammates and associates. People are diverse, and differences abound. Once you understand the motivational profile of the people you work with, you will find that your efforts to motivate them steadily improve as you take approaches consistent with the things that motivate them. Common sense approaches work well in motivating others. It’s a best practice to start by understanding what motivates your team.
Michael is a student of the human condition and studies business leadership best practices in great companies. Michael is also an award-winning coach of Emerging Leaders and C-Suite Executives at mid-sized companies in the US high technology markets. If you’d like help determining the motivational profiles of the people in your organization, send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We wish you great success in motivating your team and yourself!