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How to motivate your team

motivating your team

How to motivate your team

Motivation is simply defined as: the reason a person has for doing something.  In the subject of leadership, motivation means giving people a reason to get things done.  

Effective leadership has the end result of getting something done.  In fact, getting things done is often the simple measurement used to decide if a leader is effective.  

While a focus on getting a task done is essential to leadership, it is secondary in importance.  Most leaders focus on the wrong thing.  

They focus on the task at hand and pushing it forward.  They often focus on the goal and they lose sight of the people around them.  

They miss the “foundation” of getting things done — the source of things getting done — the reason things get done — people.  

A person gets more done when they are happy. A person gets less done when they are upset. A person is more likely to do anything for the company when they are happy. A person is more likely to give up or quit when they are upset.

Therefore, to be an effective leader is more about ensuring that every person you interact with leaves meetings happier than when they arrived.  Meetings are meant to be full of laughter, not lectures.  Do lectures sparingly and gently.

This “motivates” others to get things done.  

If people leave meetings frustrated — you can be certain they will get less done.  If people leave happy — you can be certain they will get more done.

I found out this truth years ago and have worked very hard to create and maintain an environment where our people leave meetings feeling better than when they arrived.

It has been essential to the success at my company, TTR. It is why we have the energy to provide great customer service. It is why we treat each other so well at work. It is why we look for the best and are able to stay positive. It is why our clients love working with us (because we are in a good mood). It is why we get more done than other companies far larger than ours.

All of this gets destroyed when people are left swimming in frustration.  It is your responsibility as a leader to ensure that people leave each day happy and looking forward to work.  That means that you need to do all you can to ensure this is happening.  

If, for some reason, you see someone upset or frustrated — back off.  Defuse the situation.  Apologize immediately for anything you said or did to create that feeling.  Make it safe for them to meet with you.  Ensure that they are okay.

The alternative isn’t pretty. We’ve seen it.  Organizations filled with professionals that dread coming to work or interacting with executives.  People that are afraid to speak up because they will get a “talking to” or get “bullied.”  Those professionals work slower, get less done, and they are not effective.

A harsh tone of voice or stern approach in dealing with your people results in teams that are generally not that happy.  Those teams get less done.  Those companies fail in the long run.