An inherent part of leadership is the ability to motivate your team.
Now, I'm not talking about having daily "pump it up" meetings in which you work your team up into a positive emotional frenzy a la Tony Robbins Seminars. Although, attending one of his seminars would likely cause a tremendous increase in productivity for both yourself and your team members.
What I'm talking about is motivation at its core. To motivate means to provide reason to act a certain way. It is the act of providing a powerful "why" for getting things done. At the basic level, we are motivated by the need for money. The need to meet our basic needs - food, shelter, clothing, etc... And yet, it doesn't stop there.
We are motivated by the desire for achievement, appreciation, love, reward, and so much more. It is never just about the money.
One thing that leaders often forget is to provide the right type of motivation to their team members. They assume that their team either can motivate themselves, or can never be motivated. And our job as leaders is to motivate!
So how do you motivate your team?
Do you take the time to get to know your team members? Do you know what drives them? Do you know why they chose to work with/for you? Do you know WHY they chose to remain with you?
And, conversely, if your team member is not performing, do you know why not? Do you know why they are motivated to NOT perform?
We can assume to our heart's extent. It won't do us any good.
Great leaders find ways to motivate their employees.
Great leaders know that people are the most motivated to do something when they have bought into the idea. If your team members know WHY something must be done, why it must be done a certain way, and how that aligns with their interests as well, they will work with more energy and vigor for that end goal. They are sold. They have bought in.
This Forbes Article mentions 8 ways in which leaders can motivate their employees, beyond money. Interestingly enough, each of those 8 methods are addressed in my Be Fearless Leadership Development program.
In the book "How to Win Friends and Influence People", Dale Carnegie gives two examples of how leaders motivated their team to improve the QUALITY and OUTPUT of their performance.
The first is to lead by example, and the second was to create a friendly competition. In both cases, the employees were not performing at the required levels. In both cases, the leaders had the option to discipline them, scold them, and possibly fire them. Instead, both leaders chose to motivate their team by ENCOURAGING them to perform at a higher level, not by berating them.
As you listen the theSilReview Episode 209, think of ways that YOU can motivate your team members, and share in the comments below!