“If you’re working on something that you really care about, you don’t have to be pushed, the vision pulls you.” – Steve Jobs
During the last couple of months, finding ways to increase motivation and performance is a difficult task for many leaders and managers who are looking for new tools to stimulate their teams, accurately identify and eliminate recurring challenges and help employees solve their problems with empathy.
A big part of the leader’s responsibility is to provide structure, guidance, and regulation. However, many studies at the workplace point to the fact that the most important value of a healthy work environment is not a strong external framework of work processes, but the ability of team leaders to encourage internal motivation within the team.
A ten-year survey of more than 200,000 employees shows that 79% of employees who quit their jobs cite a lack of respect as the key reason, and according to the 2017 Gallup, “The state of the American workplace report,” only 21% agree their outstanding results were strongly influenced by proper motivation.
From an organizational point of view, motivation is extremely important, and leaders are well aware of the fact that people are not divided into motivated and unmotivated – the essence is that they are motivated by different things.
Using a well-established theory of motivation, we have identified 3 ways that influence employees to be more motivated, engaged and productive.
In an organization, employees often cannot see how their efforts contribute to broader strategies. One study shows that only 47% of employees can establish a link between their day-to-day duties and company performance.
That is why successful team leaders let employees know that they value their work and initiatives because the organization benefits from their engagement. In addition, they communicate that it is important to them that employees are not only productive but satisfied.
There is no significant contribution without personal sacrifices for the one who does it. Whether they sacrificed time with family, took on mental effort to learn something new, or took visible risks for the sake of the project, as a leader, you need to let people know that you understand the effort they made to achieve a particular goal. Acknowledging the challenges they have faced makes your gratitude credible and it makes the employees more confident to continue being honest with you when they face difficulties.
Employees who have worked with leaders who possess the ability to motivate and inspire others have been encouraged, stimulated, engaged and valued enthusiasts in their work.
These leaders know that facts do not inspire people like emotions do.
An inspiring model
Greg Grosschel, the creator of a podcast dedicated to leaders and author of numerous bestsellers, said that the main goal isn’t to occasionally inspire your employees (for example, giving great speeches 4 times a year), the key is what you do often to inspire others.
Given the fact that a leader inspires more with his actions than his words, here are three ways Greg encourages his team by personal example:
- Uninterrupted consistency and dedication to work
- Focus on tasks (leaders cannot be easily distracted)
- Encouraging the team (truly believing in all team members)
Supervision does not mean controlling every step the employee makes. This means ensuring that all organizational activities are carried out at the highest level. Give employees the freedom to find unique ways to solve problems. Challenge them to think outside the box.
The best way to do this is to give people a chance to experiment while solving problems that really matter. Involving employees in decisions in which their contribution is valuable, creates a sense of satisfaction and additional motivation among employees.
In addition, table football, darts, Xbox are incorporated into most of the workspaces today. All of these things are there to create a pleasant environment for employees to solve problems, not to serve as a distraction.
Giving employees some autonomy in the way they do their job will have a strong impact on their motivation. In today’s business world, the job of a great leader is to set the goals of the individual and the team, but also to allow the team or individuals to determine how they will achieve those goals. Trust is all it takes. But if you start trusting your team, you will be able to give them more autonomy. Or better yet, give them autonomy first and let them see how much you trust them.