Climber

Imagine trying to get someone to run fast while attached to an open parachute. Its hard.  So how do we motivate this person to run faster? If you said “Get rid of the parachute” you would be wrong. While eliminating the obstacle will make the job easier and they probably will be able to run faster, but it does not mean we have increased the motivation of the runner.

A very common misconception is that in order to motivate employees you need to identify the de-motivators and then eliminate them. While this is always helpful, it does not always lead to a motivated workforce. A better way to think of de-motivators is to imagine them as rocks in everyone’s shoes when they are climbing a mountain. The pebbles make the journey a lot more difficult. Removing them will definitely create a more satisfying environment but does it increase your motivation to climb the mountain? Probably not.

The first person to make this distinction between motivators and de-motivators is a psychologist by the name of Frederick Herzberg. By studying workplace motivation, he made a profound discovery that is still talked about more than 40 years later. Herzberg found that the things which satisfied and motivated people at work, are different in kind from the things that make them dissatisfied. Things like low salaries, uncomfortable workspaces, stupid processes, annoying bosses, and dysfunctional teams, lead to job dissatisfaction. Herzberg called these Hygiene Factors as they were mostly related to the environmental factors surrounding a job, rather than the work itself. Herzberg’s research also found that people are more motivated by achievement, recognition, increasing responsibility, growth, and the work itself.

In order to increase motivation, we cannot only focus on eliminating these so-called “Hygiene Factors,” but must also find ways to enrich the jobs themselves, so employees can experience achievement, recognition, increasing responsibility, challenge and interesting work. So our goal should be to reduce sources of employee dissatisfaction while striving to increase motivation through enriching the jobs themselves. Herzberg’s theory is called the Motivation-Hygiene Theory, also known as the Two-Factor Theory.

Practical Application

Make your own list of Hygiene Factors (rocks in everyone’s shoes) that are currently lowering job satisfaction. Try and figure out which of them are the most prevalent and see if you can proactively begin to eliminate the problems. Secondly, take a long hard look at the work which each of your direct reports is required to do each day. Within their job functions, ask yourself if there are ample opportunities to experience achievement, recognition, challenge, responsibility, and interesting work.

Below are a few ideas on how you might enrich someone’s job in order to increase their motivation.

–       Introduce new and more difficult tasks not previously handled.

–       Remove some of the controls and give them more freedom in how they accomplish their role.

–       Grant them additional authority in their role.

–       Help some of your staff specialize and become experts in certain niche areas.

–       Let employees be able to touch a project from start to finish increasing their sense of achievement.

–       Make sure employees have specific feedback which helps them see their progress.

–       Make sure employees are regularly recognized for achievements.

Reducing Hygiene Factors as well as increasing Job Enrichment are both essential for creating a  motivated and satisfying workplace.

Want to learn more about Employee Motivation and how to increase the engagement on your team? Don’t miss the free webinar. Click Here.

 

 

 

kayak-beach

A simple method to help you finish the work that matters most.

Every once in a while when I am out in the wilderness I do something stupid that gets me into trouble. That happened yesterday when I decided to take a quick kayak trip near St Augustine, Florida. My mistake was that I didn’t check the tide chart before I departed; something you should do in a place where ocean tides create strong currents. St Augustine lies along the intercostal waterway with a narrow opening leading to the ocean. During outgoing tides, all of the water from the harbor and surrounding waterways are squeezed through one tiny channel, creating a deceptively swift current. To make matters worse, the water eventually collides with the waves from the ocean creating some very turbulent conditions. It’s not advisable to navigate such waters in a small boat. I was in a kayak.

It was just before noon and I was making my way across the St. Augustine inlet to reach a sandy beach on the other side. The tide was heading out to sea, but it wasn’t until I was halfway across that I realized the current was flowing faster than I had anticipated. The closer I got to the other side, the more I could see that I was caught in a river which was carrying me out into the open ocean. The surf coming in from the Atlantic was getting ominously close and I knew I had to reach the beach before it was too late. I picked up my pace but the closer I got to shore only showed me how fast I was being carried out to sea. Finally I was within 30 yards of the shore but was about to hit rough water. I haven’t felt a sense of life-threatening panic for quite some time, but there came a moment where I realized I was in real trouble.

For an instant I thought of jumping out of my kayak in order to make a mad dash for the shore but something inside me advised against it. After a quick but intense prayer, I began repeating this phrase over and over again; STAY IN THE BOAT AND PADDLE HARD! STAY IN THE BOAT AND PADDLE HARD! STAY IN THE BOAT AND PADDLE HARD! I don’t even know where it came from but I kept repeating it over and over again. It was like some part of my brain decided to take over operations and gave me two simple marching orders. STAY IN THE BOAT AND PADDLE HARD! Nothing else mattered. With the beach only 10 yards away and my adrenaline pumping, the back end of my kayak began slipping into an oncoming wave. While I expected this to be a bad thing I actually felt the wave lift my kayak and push me back upstream and towards the shore. Now, with only a few feet to go I jumped out and pulled the kayak out of the current and up onto the safety of the beach.

st-augustineI sat there for a few minutes on the hot sand recovering, which is where I took the picture you see above. I was kicking myself for getting into the situation in the first place. As humans we can make some pretty poor choices, but its also amazing what can happen when we get really focused on what matters most. In those few panicky moments it was STAY IN THE BOAT AND PADDLE HARD, but most of life is not so intense so focus becomes more of a choice than a necessity. But it’s actually focus that helps you reach your goals and create results. In fact, few other things will get you to where you want to go like a laser-guided focus on the things that matter most.

I, like you, am extremely busy, but one thing that helps me is a simple system I rely on to keep me focused. It has made all the difference and I want to share it with you. In fact if you put this simple method into practice, I guarantee you will make more progress on what’s truly important in any given month than you did before. I call it my Three Big Steps Method. Here’s how it works:

Every Morning

Every Monday I get super clear on what I need to accomplish that week. Then each morning before I get going, I write down three things that must happen that day in order to move toward my objectives. I call these my Three Big Steps and I only pick three. While my to-do list is much longer, I isolate three things that matter above all else. They also need to be three things that are taking me towards my larger objectives. I do this same exercise each day of the week, ending on Friday.

Every Evening

At the end of each day, I review my three things list. Did I get them done or not? If not I want to know why and its usually one of three reasons:

  1. I didn’t schedule it – If you need to get something done, you need to schedule it. Your most important to-do’s must become calendar items. Even though I know this and teach it, there are still times I forget to schedule one of my big three. If you don’t make room for what’s most important it will get squeezed out by the urgent. Guaranteed!
  2. I wasn’t realistic – Sometimes I didn’t get my big three done because I underestimated the time it would take to complete them. To me this is a failure in planning. Whenever this happens I remind myself to think more realistically when picking my big three for the day.
  3. I was derailed – Sometimes things beyond my control invade my day and I’m unable to get to one or all of my big three. This is usually rare and when it happens, I don’t let myself get down about it. I simply reload for tomorrow.

Friday Afternoon

Friday is judgment day. I quickly look back on my week and give myself a score out of 15. Three big steps a day for five days equal 15 big steps. For me, a successful week is determined by how I did on my Big Three Score. A 12/15 is pretty good, 13/15 even better. This score is the most important metric I use in my work life. Recently I had two weeks in a row where my Big Three score was 47%. I wasn’t happy and I made sure I found the problem so I could turn it around the following week. Bad weeks can happen, but using this system ensures that I catch myself when I begin to become unfocused or unmotivated. An added benefit is that it gamifies my focus, giving me something to aim for each week. Whenever I have high scoring weeks not only do I feel amazing, I know I made great progress on the things that matter most.

So try the Three Big Steps Method for a couple of weeks and see how it goes. It may take a few weeks to get used to, but it works. When you stay focused week after week, those steps begin to add up and soon you find yourself making progress, achieving goals, and posting amazing results. It all comes down to creating a monomaniacal focus on the things that matter most. STAY IN THE BOAT AND PADDLE HARD!

 

Do me a favor and forward this on to one manager you know.

Thanks.

 

Here’s the current I was caught in yesterday.

 

by Canadian business speaker and author Michael Kerr. 

“Did you hear the one about the manager who got a bigger bonus because he had a great sense of humour?”       Happy People

You probably haven’t heard this one making the rounds at the water cooler, because it’s not a joke. It’s actually one finding from a study by researcher Fabio Sala—a consultant with the Hay Group’s McClelland Centre for Research and Innovation—who found a positive correlation between the size of executives’ bonuses and their use of humour. The study also found that outstanding executives use humour more than twice as often as the so-called average executives.

Studies like this point to a growing consensus that if you are serious about your career, then sometimes it pays to not be serious. At least, not too serious. Not when a healthy sense of humour can help you manage stress, spark creativity, build relationships, communicate more effectively, and stand out from the herd (not to mention earn you a bigger bonus).

This may explain why some workplaces even hire for a sense of humour, and why, if you’re in the job market, you may want to hone your humour skills. In fact, a survey of 737 CEO’s by Hodge Cronin and Associates found that a whopping 98% of them would rather hire someone with a good sense of humour than someone with a more serious demeanor.

Barry Williams, the manager of Barney’s Motel (“Rooms So Clean Even Our Mothers Are Proud!”), in Brandon, Manitoba, believes in the power of humour. So much so, that while a wing of his motel was burning to the ground, Williams changed his highway promotional sign to read: “Great Deal on Non-Smoking Rooms!”

Williams’ belief in humour is reflected in his help-wanted ads: “You LOVE to clean. . . on weekends . . . for NO wages . . . What, are you crazy? Why are you doing this for free when you could be making large coin at our place?”

Ads like these, Williams suggests, are not only more likely to get read, they also send the message that Barney’s Motel is a different kind of place to work, and that overly serious candidates need not apply.

Known for their positive use of humour both internally and with their customers, WestJet Airlines also considers attitude in their employee selection process: to become a “Westjetter” it helps to demonstrate a positive use of humour during the hiring process.

Even NASA has publicly stated that when the space agency recruits future astronauts one of the personality traits they will be looking for is humour, believing that candidates who demonstrate a sense of humour are more flexible, more creative and better able to deal with stress. (Of course, if you’re flying to Mars for 17 years with only one other crew member to keep you company, a good sense of humour might just be a lifesaver).

Once your foot is in the door, a well-flexed funny bone can also help maintain a thriving career. Humour is an important social lubricant, bonding tool and trust builder. A healthy sense of humour is also one of the most effective stress busters available, helping people distance themselves from their workplace stressors, maintain a more balanced perspective and overcome obstacles. Moreover, humour is one of the best catalysts for creative thinking, which makes sense, given that both humour and creativity are about combining unrelated ideas and looking at something in a new and different light. All these benefits are likely why a survey by Robert Half International found that 84% of the CEO’s and
H.R. directors believe people with a good sense of humour do a better job.

And as the Sala study points out, a sense of humour is even becoming an essential skill for senior executives. As humorist Bob Ross observed, “A leader without a sense of humour is like a lawn mower at a cemetery—they both have lots of people underneath them, but no one is paying them any attention.”

Senior executives set the tone for an entire workplace, and one who demonstrates a healthy sense of humour can create an environment of trust and openness. In this respect, workplace humour and laughter also serve as a useful barometer—an indicator of sorts—as to just how healthy and well-functioning a team or workplace is. After all, if there is a lot of laughter around the office, chances are people are getting along with each other, highly motivated, and working in a positive and supportive atmosphere. (And if you’re thinking this is a sign that people are slacking off and not getting their work done, think again. Several workplace productivity studies suggest that fun is a key component of success, if only for the simple reason that people perform better when they are enjoying themselves.)

So does all this suggest you need to sign up for a stand-up comedy class or turn into the office joker? Not at all. Demonstrating a healthy sense of humour in the workplace is rarely about telling jokes, and it certainly isn’t about becoming the class clown. In fact, misusing humour is also a terrific way to get yourself noticed (and not in a good way).

They key is to practice “safe humour”: humour that builds rather than divides relationships, humour that laughs with people, not at people. For as much as humour can be a beneficial career skill, we all learn at an early age that humour is also a powerful weapon—a favourite of schoolyard bullies. Therefore, offensive humour—such as sexist or racist jokes—is strictly off-limits during work hours. Sarcastic or bullying humour can also be career-damaging, and many practical jokes have resulted in lawsuits (as in the case of the employee who brought laxative-filled brownies to the office) or outright dismissal.

So what is safe, particularly in this current climate of political correctness? The first rule of safe humour is to take your job seriously, but not yourself. Learn to laugh at your own foibles and the small things that are beyond your control, like the morning traffic jam, that receding hairline, or jammed photocopier. WestJet Airlines, known for creating some in-flight turbulence with their groan-inducing one-liners, keeps their humour safe by poking fun at flight attendants or pilots.

A word of caution, however: don’t laugh too often at those things that are critical to your success. Laughing at yourself when you make a boneheaded blunder is healthy, but if you repeatedly poke fun at your own core competencies, then sooner or later folks might start believing you. Which is why WestJet pilots may joke about their hair or egos, but never about their ability to fly a plane (for this, passengers are eternally grateful).

Practicing smart humour also means keeping the humour relevant. Relevant humour—topics related to your office or profession—will have the greatest impact and is the best kind of humour for creating a sense of shared history and teamwork in a workplace.

Studies on the use of humour in such dry subjects as university level calculus showed that when the instructors incorporated humour that related to the subject at hand, also known as “concept humour,” their credibility increased.

Practicing relevant humour in business presentations keeps the talk on topic, helps people retain the information longer and demonstrates that you know the subject so well you are able to play around with it. And if your audience doesn’t get the humour, nothing is lost because by making the humour relevant you’ve still delivered your message. Smart humour can not only help you get your point across, ideally, it gets people looking at your topic in a new way.

Knowing your audience, whether it’s one or 1,000, is essential. Everyone’s sense of humour is different, so it’s important to respect those differences in a work setting. Different cultures also have very different sensibilities. In Japan, for example, any humour that brings even slight attention to another person is considered not just unfunny, but a social taboo.

Finally, the key to preventing terminal professionalism (symptoms include too many bad hair days, a permanently furrowed brow, strained relationships, and a stalled career) is to give yourself permission to just be yourself and tap into what is thought to be the most human characteristic of all, our sense of humour.

And if someone says, “You can’t be serious!,” tell them they’re absolutely right.

Then tell them the one about the executive who got the bigger bonus . . .

Sidebar: Flexing Your Funny Bone
Want to bring more humour into your work life and fine-tune your humour sense? Here are a few suggestions to get you started.

  • Read more humour, watch more humour, but be analytical. What actually makes it funny?
  • Seek out unintentional or “accidental” humour, such as signs that say things like “Ears Pierced While You Wait” (what’s the alternative?) or “Bras Half Off!” (which half?)
  • Start a humour file or journal to collect humorous material (work-related jokes, funny bloopers, alternative definitions to workplace terms or acronyms etc.) and your funny ideas about work.
  • Look for simple, safe opportunities to slip some humour into the mix, such as a meeting agenda or small presentation.
  • Write work-related Top 10 lists. Keep them short and snappy and don’t worry about being overly funny to start with, just start writing.
  • Set up a humour bulletin board in your office.
  • Bring in a humour first aid kit to help you tap into your sense of humour, stockpiling it with items that will make you laugh in the face of stress.
  • Share funny stories about how you started in the business or about early mistakes you made. They’ll help you appear more humble, confident and human.
  • Be curious, adopt a child’s mindset and ask a lot of questions: Why do people . . .? Why do we never . . . ? Why is it that . . . ? What would happen if. . .?”

Sidebar: Laughing in the Face of Stress

  • Reward yourself: attach a fun reward to your common everyday stressors. For example, every time you suffer through the commute from hell, treat yourself to a special lunch.
  • Reframe the situation: mentally play around with a situation to find something funny in it by exaggerating wildly, putting yourself in someone else’s shoes, looking at it from the opposite perspective or asking yourself how the situation could be worse.
  • Reflect. Visit your “happy place” by recalling a funny event from your life.
  • Relax. Take a five-minute humour break to mentally floss away your anxiety.
  • Read a funny book. Pull out a photo of your dog dressed in a nightgown. Or use a laugh-line: phone a friend and give them one minute to make you laugh.
  • Remember, when it comes to managing your own stress, the only person you need to worry about amusing, is yourself.


Michael Kerr is the author of “Inspiring Workplaces” and “You Can’t Be Serious! Putting Humour to Work.”  Michael is a Hall of Fame business speaker, very funny motivational speaker, and trainer on the topics of workplace culture, business creativity and humor in the workplace. Reach Michael at 1-866-609-2640 or via e-mail at mike@mikekerr.com. For more free articles, resources, and DVDs on this topic surf on over to www.mikekerr.com .  And be sure to sign up for his raved about weekly e-zine, Humor at Work.

A lot…

I recently began writing another book. Not wanting to embark on this adventure alone, I contacted a few friends who I knew wanted to do the same thing. The agreement was simple; spend one hour a day, five days a week working on your book and be accountable to the group for time spent. So far we have already had one person drop out and the hardest part is yet to come. This is part of the email I sent the group yesterday:

“Greetings Authors,

 I trust last week was inspiring for you as you spent time crafting your masterpiece. Just a note of caution; things are about to get difficult. While we seem to be off to a good start, the real test lay ahead. This is to be expected; after all, it’s not easy carving out an hour per day to work on something new. All new initiatives begin easy enough, but later they test our resolve. Knowing this is part of the secret to pushing beyond our own unwillingness to sit and write. But after a time, as we continue to plod along, you will notice a shift in your motivation as each step takes you closer and closer to your goal. The key is to not give up.”

All great efforts to do something new go through a predictable cycle. Understanding this cycle is the key to creating sustainable long-term behavioral change, and it can be summed up by the image below. In fact, this might be one of the most important images when it comes to leading change.

Change Is Not Linear

Contrary to the evidence, we still like to believe that change is a simple linear process; we decide on what we want, we plot the path to get there and voila, there it is. But change, at least any significant change, does not work like this. Remember your last set of New Year’s resolutions? Not so linear were they! Instead of a straight path to new behavior, change is more like a deep ravine demonstrated in the drawing below.  Each one of these points on this diagram represent crucial places along any change continuum, whether its getting your work team to embrace a new piece of software, or you simply trying to lose some of your belly fat. Here is an explanation of each:

  1. The Status Quo – This is Latin for the current state of affairs. This is where we exist on a day-to-day basis with relative ease thanks to what psychologists call Automaticity. It’s a fancy word for being on autopilot, like the way you drive your car. Your habits and lifestyle are deeply embedded in your neural circuitry.
  2. The Catalyst – At some point, your status quo is interrupted by a catalyst; a friend asks you if you want to write a book while he writes his, you watch a documentary on juicing and vow to change your diet, or perhaps its time your company rebrands itself with updated mission, vision and value statements. This catalyst causes you to make immediate behavioral changes in order to line up with your new goals. These are exciting times as you launch into your new endeavor with eyes set on the prize. This state of elevated performance is supported partly by the excitement of change. The problem though is that it only lasts about 7-21 days before the shimmer begins to fade.
  3. The Dip – When it comes to behavioral change, things always get harder before they get easier. There are many reasons for this but one has to do with energy. Embarking on something new takes energy, in fact a lot of energy. Change means new decisions, more self-denial, and a disruption of your current life, all of which suck energy from your brain. This leaves us tired and discouraged, and vulnerable for a relapse. The key to surviving the dip is persisting long enough to reach automaticity; that big word for not having to think about what you’re doing.
  4. The Climb – After persisting long enough (research out of University College of London says on average 66 days) you will begin to make progress. This will come in tiny steps but each new one takes you closer to your goal. As you continue, you build momentum and momentum finally leads you to E.
  5. The Goal – Your new behavior, supported by a fresh neural pathway in your brain, has become automatic and requires less thought and energy. This enables your brain to devote resources to other things like enjoying your life again, and finding new things to change.

 

People are amazingly good at point A and pretty adept at point B as well. Where the majority of us falter is at C; The Dip. But if we recognize how change works, both personally and organizationally, we can better prepare ourselves. Some of the things you can do to help are:

  1. Don’t commit to changing too many things at once. In fact one thing is better than two.
  2. During The Dip focus on finding small daily wins in your execution of small behaviors and not the final goal. Remember the lesson of tiny steps. They seem insignificant at the time but if you stick with them they lead you someplace great.
  3. If you are leading others through change, The Dip requires a lot of extra support, motivation,  and communication from you. How you lead during The Dip will be the difference between succeeding or failing.
  4. If you are going to add something new to your life, figure out what you are going to subtract in order to make room for it. We only have so many hours in a day.
  5. Lastly, remind yourself and others that change is exciting at first, messy in the middle, but amazing in the end. This simple acknowledgement will help you persevere.

So the next time you are about to embark on a new change initiative, whether in your own life or within your organization, remember this diagram and plan your steps accordingly.

Help someone you know who is trying to make a change by forwarding this article on to them.

P.S.  Any of you have a book inside them that they want to write but you need help? I invite you to join our authors group; we are just about to head into the dip!

How To Be Great

If you want to be great, I mean truly outstanding then read the story below. Have you ever witnessed someone so skilled at their craft that simply watching them was inspiring? I recently had the chance to see pure mastery. A couple of months ago my son had an opportunity to spend a weekend with arguably the best ice skating coach in the world. His name is Besa Tsintsadze. Besa is from Tbilisi, Georgia and grew up behind the Iron Curtain in the former Soviet Union. Besa loved to play hockey as a boy but when he was 12 years old his coach told him he was too small and encouraged him to switch to figure skating, which he did. After a successful career as a figure skater he retired and began teaching hockey players in the US how to skate. This is where the story gets interesting.

For seven years he worked in relative obscurity, practicing and perfecting his methods until one day the National Hockey League took notice. The Pittsburgh Penguins hired Besa as their skating coach and over the next 5 years he trained some of the best players in the sport. In 2011, the Boston Bruins hired Besa as a skating consultant during which time they won the Stanley Cup. With his reputation now firmly in place, the superstars of the league are now phoning Besa to set up private coaching sessions.

10 Years of Silence

Besa’s ability to help the best skaters in the world get better is nothing short of amazing and there is an important lesson here in the principles of excellence. Have you ever heard of the 10 Years of Silence? It’s a term coined by John Hayes, a cognitive psychology professor at Carnegie Mellon University. Hayes wanted to know how long does it take for someone to reach elite levels of performance at something. Hayes has spent years studying masters in their field such as Mozart and Picasso. While researching musicians he discovered that over 95% of the most popular symphonies were written in year ten or after of a composers career.

In fact, none of the masters were overnight successes. It seems excellence requires more than raw talent, it needs time. Dr. Hayes began to refer to this period filled with hard work and little recognition as the 10 Years of Silence.

Not Just Time But Deliberate Practice

But time was not the only factor, which led to success for each of these geniuses. It was time filled with what Anders Eriksson calls Deliberate Practice. It’s about spending focused time everyday trying to improve a certain area of your craft. In Besa’s case, he already possessed an amazing ability to skate, but that did not mean he was ready to teach it to hockey players. It took him 7 years of perfecting his drills to become someone who could train the very best in the world.

I have often said that leadership is a role and you can get better with practice. Great leaders are not born but are made by deliberate focus and daily improvement. The key for you is to stay focused in how you spend your time. Everyone is busy, but the truly great ones make mastery a priority.

The 10 Years of Silence Requires Persistence.

What if Besa had quit after 4 years, or 5 or even 6? No NHL superstars would have him on speed dial, that’s for sure. But he didn’t. He kept working, diligently, day after day, from one cold ice rink to another, until his excellence could no longer be ignored.

So what is your magnificent obsession? How will you gift the world with what you have already been given? Where do you need to focus a little time each day to improve your craft so that you will eventually reach genius-level mastery? Is it giving speeches, leading teams, teaching others, or writing? Perhaps it’s plotting strategy, coaching staff, or designing training programs?  Whatever it is, be willing to stay the course during your 10 Years of Silence so that you too may cause people to sit up and take notice.

 

Forward this on to someone you know who could use some encouragement.

 

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nineminutesnarrowblank-new-version3

Don’t you hate it when you work around someone who always sees the glass as half empty? Nothing can sap your mood like a complainer. And when you try to help them see that the world (or office) is not as bad as they think, it only leads to more complaining. So what’s a person supposed to do?

Believe it or not one of the best ways to stop a complainer from complaining is to validate them.  This involves finding some kernel of truth in what they are saying and empathizing with them about it. This is counter intuitive because our natural fear is that if we agree with them, the floodgates for more complaining are going to open, but in reality the opposite is true.

Many times a complainer is simply trying to voice a frustration. They are not looking for the bright side, but rather to be listened to and understood. Once they feel like you understand what they’re frustrated about their complaining begins to die out.

So the next time you work around, (or live with) someone who is on a complaint spree, avoid trying to shift their thinking to the positive. Simply listen and try to acknowledge the frustration they must be feeling.

I hope today finds you living and leading with excellence and passion. I want to give you three big things that will only take you three minutes to execute and will make a difference in the lives of your staff.

Thing  #1 Your Enthusiasm is on Display
Regardless of what industry you are in, people want to be part of something larger than themselves. This is one of the reasons why we have things like Mission and Vision statements so together we can be strive to achieve some goal that excites us. But your staff will take their cue from you. If you are not enthusiastic about what you are doing, they will sense it. I know we can all go through our periods of not liking our job but recommitting to enthusiasm is essential. A leader’s enthusiasm is not only contagious, its comforting. It tells your people that they are working toward a worthy goal. So take a moment and check your enthusiasm. How passionate have you been lately about your work and your team? Regardless of the answer, what small thing can you do today to demonstrate your enthusiasm for your organization and your people.

Thing # 2 One of your staff want their efforts to be noticed.
When one of your staff pours their heart and soul into a task or project, there is a part of them that wonders if anybody noticed.Often as leaders we can get so busy that we forget to stop, look around, and recognize those who are working hard among us. This can be especially true of our best employees. It’s easy to take for granted that they are consistently performing well. Take one minute today to identify one of your staff or a peer and let them know you appreciate what they are doing.

Thing # 3 One of your staff members is wondering how they are doing at their job.
All of us love to know where we stand. Many of your staff will have a general sense of how they are doing, but will not be 100% sure. When people receive feedback on their progress or performance it helps reinforce a need for mastery. The feedback you give will either lead to a sense of satisfaction for them if they are on target, or it will bring them greater clarity, allowing them to see where they need to adjust and improve. Either way, the feedback will help them tremendously. Take one minute today and give one of your employees feedback on how they are doing with their job.

Three things, three minutes. Go for it!

 

P.S.

Since so much of leadership means being on the top of your game, I want to let you know about an upcoming webinar where I will teach you one of the most powerful tools to help you lead with passion and excellence. Great leadership comes down to the little things and this requires us to have a laser-like focus combined with high energy. In my webinar, Ready to Launch, I teach you how to design a morning ritual that will both energize and focus you to live and lead with excellence. You can find out more details here: Ready to Launch

 

 

 

The importance of feedback.

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