The Golden Nugget of Team motivation

February 21, 2019

Hey leaders, I hate to break it to you, but you are not the main character in your team’s story. You have big goals, I know, and you should! But if you think you can motivate someone to do what you want, you may have some trouble. Maybe that’s why you’re here?

Managers often get lost and frustrated when motivating their team because their incentives, pep talks, performance plans, or motivational videos aren’t doing it anymore. They often fall into the trap of trying to inspire their team with the same goals and the same drive and passion that they themselves have. I’m sorry to say but It’s probably not gonna happen. The goals you have for your life are different from your team’s goals most of the time.

A shift in perspective can completely change how you motivate someone. If you want to steam up your crew, start asking yourself “How is working for me going to get this person what they want in life?”. Your team should have a general idea of where they want to progress. Working for you is simply a tool for them to achieve the life they always wanted! They may want the experience for bigger and better things, or they may simply want the money to go to school or buy a house. Additionally, they may have a genuine passion for the industry and want to start their own company/franchise!

What would happen if, as a leader, you understood (and cared about) what your employees wanted and could inspire REAL motivation?

One suggestion is to give your team some time to write out what they want to accomplish in life. After that is done, have them write out how they want this job to contribute to that life goal? (Please give them time to do this as this may not be an easy assignment for everyone)

And there you have it, the golden nugget. The leader’s job is then to show the employee how working for them will accomplish the employee’s personal life goals.

Wouldn’t it be easier to motivate someone to get what they want rather than assuming they want the same thing you do?

If you think it would be easier, start with the attitude, “How is working for me going to get my team what they want in life?”

Good luck!