Highly motivated employees are more productive, quick to increase their skills, and more willing to learn and grow than their unengaged counterparts. One of the greatest challenges a manager faces is figuring out what can be done to motivate employees both individually and as team players.
The Power of Leading Teams
For a leader, motivating a group of people to work together in pursuit of a common goal is an important measure of success. The task is complicated by today’s high rate of employee turnover by people who don’t buy in to your company’s vision or don’t feel recognized for the work they do.
If you want to motivate individual employees while at the same time foster a team spirit, it takes a lot more than group outings and once-a-year seminars. It requires a deep understanding of where motivation comes from and how it works. Experts agree that motivation isn’t out there somewhere; rather, it comes from within. Every employee has true motivation stored deep inside just waiting to be ignited and sparked into life.
One of the five domains of emotional intelligence, motivation works to increase engagement, productivity, and innovation. Yet, if the process is a cycle, that means those three things also work to increase motivation. This helps make it clear which areas you should focus on if you want to be a motivating force for your team.
Create a Work Culture That Fosters Teamwork
Nurturing employee morale and a willingness to adopt innovative management processes are the keys to successful employee motivation. Here are a few ways to manage individual employees and lead a cohesive team.
- Use a constructive “what can we do” approach, not a “we have to” one. It’s the difference between being a boss and a being leader. In the process, you encourage team bonding as employees work together to find and implement solutions. Sharing common ground with fellow employees gives people a sense of “we’re all in this together.”
- Central to all growth is the drive to innovate. Create a company culture that fosters creativity and development of new concepts. Don’t get caught in the trap of thinking innovation is only for those in leadership roles. Innovation is a process that everyone can participate in. Encourage team members to see possibilities everywhere, and to share their ideas without fear of judgment or finger-pointing when things don’t go as expected.
- Offer constant feedback and recognition. Employees need to know their efforts are appreciated. If they sense they’re being taken for granted, it’s highly unlikely they’ll stay motivated. Want people to stay galvanized? Reinforce positive traits and their willingness to take risks.
Motivating employees and encouraging them to work as a team in achieving your organization’s goals doesn’t have to be difficult. Identify individual strengths, inspire full team participation, and watch your employees and business flourish.