Five Keys To Motivating Your Team Members

Motivation is described by psychologist Shay McConnon as 'the inner desire to take action'. Tap into people's motivation and you will strike gold!

Motivation can be reduced to a simple form of self-interest more commonly known as what's in it for me? Individuals need to see and feel the reward or benefit to themselves by taking action. The greater the perceived valued to self, the greater the level of motivation.

There is no universal source of motivation – it cannot be bought in a one size fits all form. Being thanked personally may motivate some people whilst others may want to be given challenges as a thank you. Money may motivate some people, but not others, and more often is not the big motivator people think it is.

What motivates us – is it respect, the chance to be creative, the opportunity for success, the time to think things through and develop and plan? What ever the answer, it is important to note that different people have different needs and different motivators. So the key question is, what motivates your people, employees and team – why will they do, what they do, even better?

As a manager or team leader, there are more people out there that are not like you, than like you, so be aware of using your criteria for being motivated to motivate others. Ian Botham, as captain of the England Cricket team, rarely gave motivating talks to his players as he felt that putting on the England cricket strip should be motivation enough. General Norman Schwarzkopf went to great lengths to take care of his troops, personally, engaging with them. Who is right?

The best managers and team leaders know their staff or team, and know the individuals' motivations and can tap into these strong sources of energy, with integrity, to create an even more successful outcome, more easily, that will benefit the people and the business.

It is considered that some 75% of a team or companies success will come from soft skills such as motivation and attitude – not from hard skills or knowledge. If people are not motivated it is highly unlikely they will use their skills and talents and this will negatively impact on the bottom line whether you are a premier football team, an events company of a private business.

Motivated teams of people far out perform other teams, no matter how qualified they are. Keys to motivating your people include;

1. Find out people's criteria for being motivated and set goals in accordance.

2. Create a rewarding environment where people can feel good about themselves.

3. Invest in people – and they will invest in you.

4. Understand how to thank people, so they feel thanked.

5. Maintain integrity and honesty.

There are many ways to find out about what motivates and drives people, how to engage with your staff or team members, to build better working relationships, increase motivation, trust, respect and rapport, whilst reducing costly personality clashes, mis-trust, stress, sickness and disputes. By increasing staff motivation and engagement, you can directly increase the energy levels, interest, desire and productivity, which can lead to increased productivity and profit.

Tools such as the SDI (Strength Deployment Inventory), DISC, Myers Briggs Type Indicator and even Belbin, are all good foundations from which to run People Development programmes to develop communication, understanding and engagement. PJ Stevens of LEAP favours the SDI model, as it is easy to use, accurate and highly effective in developing communication skills, leadership, understanding, teamwork, conflict resolution and performance. The SDI model is also part of the Rewarding Relationships programme developed by Shay McConnon and delivered by companies such as People First and LEAP. If you want to understand how to motivate your people, the Rewarding Relationships programme is a crown jewel in anyones teambuilding plans.

Increase staff motivation and engagement, and you can tap into a Gold Mine!

PJ Stevens, is a motivational speaker, presenter and facilitator working across the UK, Europe and Middle East, specialising in soft skills, teambuilding and management development.