Today I want to ask you a question; what drives your team? It’s a tough question to answer, but one thing is for sure. It’s never just about the money.
You’re working with a team of individuals who have different motivators. Some want ‘fame’, others want to change the world, yet others want to prove themselves in some way. How do you pull them all together to make a motivated and driven team?
We all know being pushed into something doesn’t work, nor does nagging or coercion. Instead, use these three super-important techniques and habits to help your team drive themselves to greatness.
1. Make sure everyone knows your vision and the organisation’s vision and why.
It’s not so much the vision that’s the key here, although everyone needs to be on the same path, of course. It’s the why that matters. It’s not just millennials who want to make a difference; it’s almost everyone. Part of being able to see how they are making a difference is to understand how what they do counts towards the goal. Knowing how they are contributing to something great can be a powerful motivator. Working together toward that something great is a great unifier and team builder.
2. Praise successes and use failures as a coaching opportunity.
When a team or team member does something good, praise them. Many employees are used to being pulled up when they do something wrong but rarely hear positive feedback. When we have a success experience, we’re more likely to repeat it, so be loud and proud when it happens.
If you face a failure, don’t worry, and don’t make it a negative experience. Use it as an opportunity for coaching. That’s the best way to put a positive slant on it and shift the team focus back towards the goal. The first team success is very powerful, so aim for it and encourage everyone to enjoy and celebrate.
3. Let them do what they’re good at.
Occasionally the best thing you can do is to let your team get on with it.
Step back and don’t get in the way. You don’t need to direct the process if it’s working smoothly, and the more control your team has over the work, the more committed they will feel about it. All the surveys tell us people want an opportunity to grow, learn and to prove themselves, so allow them to have it. You may be surprised at the degree of support team members show each other as they work as a self-managed unit.
None of those tips are rocket science yet they are the things that first slip when the pressure is on. As a leader, you need to be aware of your own behaviour and control it. And the more energy and enthusiasm you can show for the way your team works, the better. It’s contagious and will quickly spread through the team.
In effect, you’re not really driving your team to greatness. You’re allowing the team to drive itself under your guidance. That’s a powerfully motivating difference.
Stepping back and letting the team go isn’t always easy to do, and it’s just one aspect of leadership behaviour that may be covered in our Executive Coaching sessions. If you want to be a better leader and motivate your team to greatness with you, call me and we’ll work out the best way for you to move forward.