How to Motivate Your Team and Energize Your People to Achieve Great Things Using Mind Tools Team in Charge of Content
How to Motivate Your Team – Energizing Your Employees to Do Good
Encourage your team to soar.
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Your employees may have all the knowledge in the world, but if they are not motivated, it is unlikely that they will reach their full potential.
On the other hand, work appears to be simple when people are motivated.
Motivated people have a positive attitude, are enthusiastic about what they’re doing, and know they’re devoting their time to something worthwhile. In short, motivated employees enjoy and excel at their jobs.
All effective leaders want people in this mindset to fill their organizations. As a result, it is critical that you, as a leader and manager, keep your team motivated and inspired. Of course, this is easier said than done!
In this article, we’ll review the key theories, strategies, and tools you can use to keep your employees motivated.
Two Kinds of Motivation
Extrinsic and intrinsic motivation are the two main types of motivation.
When you use extrinsic motivation, you use external factors to persuade your team to do what you want. Extrinsic motivators include pay raises, time off, bonus checks, and the threat of job loss, all of which can be positive or negative.
Intrinsic motivation comes from within. It is about having a strong desire to overcome a challenge, produces high-quality work, or interact with team members you like and trust. Intrinsically motivated individuals derive great satisfaction and enjoyment from their work.
Every team member is unique, and their motivators will most likely differ. So, to successfully motivate your people, you must first get to know them, discover what motivates them, and find a good mix of extrinsic and intrinsic motivators.
Advantages of Workplace Motivation
A person’s interest in their job cannot be directly controlled. Of course, an individual bears some responsibility for motivating himself, but you can help him by creating an environment that encourages him to become more intrinsically motivated. Individuals, teams, and even entire organizations can benefit.
Motivated people are highly adaptable, especially to change, and have a positive attitude at work. They aid in the spread of a company’s good reputation, the reduction of absenteeism, and the improvement of performance and profit. They also work harder and with a greater sense of urgency to achieve their goals than unmotivated people.
Techniques for Motivating Your Employees
As a manager, you can use the steps and strategies listed below to create a motivating environment for your team.
Step 1: Examine Your Assumptions
You might not realize it, but your beliefs heavily influence your management style regarding your employees.
For example, do you believe your team members despise working and require constant supervision? Or do you believe they are content with their jobs and will have more responsibility and freedom in the future?
These two fundamental beliefs are the foundation for the theories of team motivation Theory X and Theory Y.
Theory X managers are authoritarian and believe they must constantly supervise their employees. They believe that their team members do not want or require responsibility and that they must motivate people to produce results extrinsically.
Managers who subscribe to Theory Y believe that their team members want more responsibility and should participate in decision-making. They believe that everyone has something valuable to contribute.
In short, your beliefs about your team members’ motivation influence how you interact with them. As a result, it’s critical to consider how you see your employees and what you believe truly motivates them. (Thinking about it from your perspective can help – would you prefer your boss to manage you using Theory X or Theory Y? And how long would you be willing to work for a Theory X manager?)
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Step 2: Remove Dissatisfaction and Replace It With Satisfaction
According to psychologist Fredrick Herzberg, you can motivate your team by removing elements of job dissatisfaction and creating conditions for job satisfaction.
In his Motivation-Hygiene Theory, he noted how irritating company policies, intrusive supervision, or a lack of job security, among other things, are common sources of dissatisfaction. If these issues are not addressed, people will be dissatisfied at work, and motivating them will be difficult, if not impossible.
After you’ve eliminated the causes of job dissatisfaction, you can focus on providing satisfaction. Clear opportunities for advancement/promotion, increased responsibility, ongoing training and development programs, or simply a sense of working with purpose are all sources of job satisfaction.
Step 3: Customize Your Motivational Strategy
Remember that your team comprises individuals with diverse circumstances, backgrounds, and experiences. As a result, each individual may be motivated by different motivating factors and be more or less adept at self-motivation. You can help each team member stay motivated if you try to understand them.
You can tailor your approach to motivation using various tools and strategies, not all of which are completely consistent with one another. However, remember that every person and situation is unique, so select the theory or model that best fits your circumstances.
Let’s take a closer look at these:
According to Sirota’s Three-Factor Theory, three critical factors motivate your employees. These are Fairness/Equity, Achievement, and Camaraderie. By incorporating these factors into their work, you can ensure that your team members remain motivated and positive.
McClelland’s Human Motivation Theory differs slightly. McClelland believed that each of us has three distinct drivers: the desire for Achievement, Affiliation, and Power, with one predominating. Your efforts should yield positive results if you structure your motivators and leadership style around a team member’s dominant driver.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs identifies five universal needs, from the most basic to the most complex. Physiological/bodily, safety, love/belonging, self-esteem, and self-actualization are examples of these (the sense of doing what you were born to do). Maslow’s Hierarchy is typically depicted as a pyramid, with the basic needs at the bottom because they must be met before moving on to the more complex ones. According to this approach, you can motivate your team by addressing all levels.
According to Amabile and Kramer’s Progress Theory, small “wins” and progress can be motivating. It suggests six things you can provide to give people the best chance of making measurable and meaningful progress at work: clear goals and objectives, autonomy, resources, time, support, and the ability to learn from failure.
Expectancy Theory can also create a strong, motivating work environment where high performance is expected. It clarifies the relationship between effort and outcome and can be used to tailor motivational rewards to the preferences of individuals.
According to the Pygmalion Effect, your expectations can influence the performance of your team members. When you doubt someone’s ability to succeed, you can make her feel undervalued and undermine her confidence. The Pygmalion Effect is useful because it reinforces the idea that having and communicating high expectations of employees can encourage them to perform better at work.
Money, of course, is important, and Understanding Strategic Compensation can assist you in structuring your team’s extrinsic rewards. Understanding the differences between base, performance, and group-performance pay and their inherent benefits can help you structure financial compensation in a more motivating way.
Step 4: Incorporate Transformational Leadership
Motivation is vital in the workplace, but this will only take you so far, and then leadership takes over (click here to visit the Mind Tools leadership section) (click here to visit the Mind Tools leadership section). Once you’ve used the motivational approaches discussed above, you need to take the next step toward becoming an inspirational, transformational leader.
When you adopt this leadership style, you can motivate and lift your team to new heights and help it to achieve extraordinary things. Transformational leaders expect great things from their team members, and they spark feelings of trust and loyalty in return.
To become a transformational leader, you need to create an attractive, inspiring vision of a meaningful future, encourage people to buy into this vision, manage its delivery, and continue to build trusting relationships with your team members. Set aside time to develop your leadership skills and focus on your personal development so that you can become an inspiring role model for your people.
As a manager, your goal is to keep your team members motivated and enthusiastic about their work. It’s important to strike a balance between extrinsic motivators, such as pay raises and changes to working conditions, and intrinsic motivators, like assigning people tasks that they enjoy.
First, analyze your assumptions about your people. It’s important to remember that they will likely respond more positively when you use a participatory style of management, where they have a responsibility and can make their own decisions.
Next, use Herzberg’s Motivators and Hygiene Factors to eliminate any causes of dissatisfaction among your team members, and then take steps to introduce elements of satisfaction.
Everyone is different, so tailor your motivational approach to each team member. You can use many strategies and tools, but the more you know and understand each individual, the more effective your efforts will be.
Finally, remember the importance of leadership in motivating your team members and encouraging them to exceed their expectations. Becoming a transformational leader can encourage loyalty and trust and inspire, support and recognize others. More than this, you can inspire them to achieve extraordinary things.