By: Alan Fairweather
Do you want a highly motivated team who don't take time off work, don't keep looking for other jobs and make a positive contribution to your business?
If the answer is "yes," then there are three steps you need to take with each member of your team.
Step 1 - Spend some quality time
I didn't say "quantity time" I said "quality time." One or two minutes of quality time on a regular basis are far more productive than a one hour review every year.
You need to get to know each member of your team better and they need to get to know you.
This will help you build a positive relationship with each team member. You'll gain a much better understanding of them and how they're handling the job.
It will also give the impression that you care about the individual and show that you're there to help with problems both personal and business.
Spending quality time will encourage opinions and ideas to flow from them and allows you to explain the company's mission. It gives them a feeling of being in on things which is a huge motivator.
It will also help you build an "early warning system" of any problems both business and personal. Finally, it builds team spirit and morale.
Step 2 - Give feedback and coach
You need to regularly tell each member of your team when they're doing well and when not so well.
I read some recent research that suggested 65% of employees in the US received no recognition at work in the past year.
My experience tells me that it's much the same throughout the world and much worse in some countries.
Some managers still believe - "why should I praise people when they're only doing what they're paid to do." If you want a happy and motivated team then you need to tell them when they're doing well.
It's also important to tell people when they're not performing well. There are too many managers who either ignore poor behaviour or come down on the person like a ton of bricks.
There are particular ways to give feedback and coach and they're described in detail in the book - How to get More Sales by Motivating Your Team.
Step 3 - Be a believer
We're now getting into the area of "Empowerment" which was first introduced in the 1980's and became a bit of a management buzzword. However, I believe that it's one of the most promising but least understood concepts in team motivation today.
I'm a fairly down to earth practical sort of person (probably comes from my engineering background). I'm not big into motivation theories unless I can see the benefits for me - I see a great deal of benefit for managers and team leaders in Empowerment.
Empowerment is about utilising the knowledge, skill, experience and motivation power that's already within your people.
The majority of people in teams and organisations throughout the world are severely underutilised. Your team have probably more to offer in terms of skill, knowledge and experience.
Put this to the test right away - implement these steps, motivate your team and achieve your business goals.