Feedback and Rewards

Motivation to Exceed Expectations

Ann Golden Egle asked:

As a leader, you have a vision and expectation of how well a task can be performed and your staff frequently falls below that level because you believe that YOU are the one who can do it best. Not so. As their leader and using motivational skills, you can raise their vision to your level and produce more creative resolution to the current project.

Supervisors and managers can easily delegate, repeating the patterns of being disillusioned. You can just be a static member of the middle-management team or you can be a productive leader. The title doesn’t make an individual a leader. Actions–consistent, meaningful, well-thought-out actions make the leader.

It’s a wonderful skill as a leader to captivate the individual’s desire so that they want to complete a job or a project. This means that they involve all of their capabilities (imagination, insight, curiosity, enthusiasm) to not only accomplish the job, but they exceed expectations.

“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.” ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Leadership mastery comes in continually challenging yourself to come up with new ways to motivate. Clients tell me “I just don’t know what’s wrong with this individual. I’ve repeatedly told them what to do and they’re incapable of doing what I want when I want it even if it’s just something uncomplicated!”

You’ve heard it said that the definition of insanity is ‘doing the same thing over and over again expecting different results.’ If your team is not living up to your expectations where is the disconnect? Is it with them? More likely it is with you and the manner in which you are communicating your wishes.

Do they have responsibility in asking for clarification and doing their job to the highest level imaginable? Absolutely, yet the buck stops with you. There is no shortage of books on motivation, yet I believe the simplest technique is to know the individuals within your team. Who are they? What do they value? What motivates them as individuals and as a team?

Many leaders make the mistake of thinking all individuals are motivated by what their leader is motivated by, be it money, competition, excellence or accomplishment. In taking the time to observe, ask questions and really getting to know the individual, you can save hours, weeks, years of disappointment on both sides.

This week take a deeper look at all individuals you lead (including your children.) What do they really want? Have you simply delegated tasks to them, or have you stirred up their own internal motivation? How can you motivate them in a manner that has more to do with them than you? If you do this, you’ll create the opportunity for everyone to win, you’ll create excitement in the workplace, and you will have taught them about high-reaching goals.. Have an outstanding week and enjoy your discoveries.

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