Be generous with praise. Everyone wants it and it’s one of the easiest things to give. Plus, praise from the CEO goes a lot farther than you might think. Praise every improvement that you see your team members make. Once you’re comfortable delivering praise one-on-one to an employee, try praising them in front of others.
Get rid of the managers. Projects without project managers? That doesn’t seem right! Try it. Removing the project lead or supervisor and empowering your staff to work together as a team rather then everyone reporting to one individual can do wonders. Think about it. What’s worse than letting your supervisor down? Letting your team down! Allowing people to work together as a team, on an equal level with their co-workers, will often produce better projects faster. People will come in early, stay late, and devote more of their energy to solving problems.
Make your ideas theirs. People hate being told what to do. Instead of telling people what you want done; ask them in a way that will make them feel like they came up with the idea. “I’d like you to do it this way” turns into “Do you think it’s a good idea if we do it this way?”
Never criticise or correct. No one, and I mean no one, wants to hear that they did something wrong. If you’re looking for a de-motivator, this is it. Try an indirect approach to get people to improve, learn from their mistakes, and fix them. Ask, “Was that the best way to approach the problem? Why not? Have you any ideas on what you could have done differently?” Then you’re having a conversation and talking through solutions, not pointing a finger.
Make everyone a leader. Highlight your top performers’ strengths and let them know that because of their excellence, you want them to be the example for others. You’ll set the bar high and they’ll be motivated to live up to their reputation as a leader.
Take an employee to lunch once a week. Surprise them. Don’t make an announcement that you’re establishing a new policy. Literally walk up to one of your employees, and invite them to lunch with you. It’s an easy way to remind them that you notice and appreciate their work.
Give recognition and small rewards. These two things come in many forms: Give a shout out to someone in a company meeting for what she has accomplished. Run contests or internal games and keep track of the results on a whiteboard that everyone can see. Tangible awards that don’t break the bank can work too. Try things like dinner, trophies, spa services, and plaques.
Throw company parties. Doing things as a group can go a long way. Have a company picnic. Organize birthday parties. Hold a happy hour. Don’t just wait until the holidays to do a company activity; organize events throughout the year to remind your staff that you’re all in it together.
Share the rewards – and the pain. When your company does well, celebrate. This is the best time to let everyone know that you’re thankful for their hard work. Go out of your way to show how far you will go when people help your company succeed. If there are disappointments, share those too. If you expect high performance, your team deserves to know where the company stands. Be honest and transparent.
Develop Winning Personal Growth and Development Habits – Select the specific habits and behaviours you will need to practice every day to become the person you want to become. These could be the habits of clarity, planning, thoroughness, studiousness, hard work, determination, and persistence.
Upgrade Your Personal Knowledge and Skills – Set specific measures for each of your goals. If your goal is to excel in your field, determine how you will know when you have achieved it. Decide how you can measure your progress and evaluate your success. Perhaps you can use as a measure the number of hours you study in your field each week. Perhaps you can measure the number of books you read or the number of audio programs you listen to. Perhaps you could measure your progress by the number of sales you make as the result of your growing skills.
Action Exercise – Decide today to develop yourself to the point where you can achieve every financial and personal goal you ever set and become everything you are capable of becoming. Write down your goals and make sure to look at them every day, then ponder ways you possibly achieve these goals.
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About the author: Colin Thompson is a former Colin is a former successful Managing Director of Transactional/Print Manufacturing Plants, Document Management/Workflow Solutions companies and other organisations, former Group Chairman of the Academy for Chief Executives, Non- Executive Director, Mentor – RFU Leadership Academy, Mentor – Coventry University, Mentor – The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, helping companies raise their “bottom-line” and “increase cash flow”. Plus, helping individuals to be successful in business and life in general. Author of several publications, research reports, guides, business and educational models on CD- ROM/Software/PDF and over 1000 articles published on business and educational subjects worldwide. Plus, International Speaker/Visiting University Professor. Click to view Colin Thompson’s short bio