- Communicating: explicit vs. implicit
- Evaluating: direct criticism vs. indirect criticism
- Leading: egalitarian vs. hierarchical
- Deciding: consensual vs. top down
- Trusting: task vs. relationship
- Disagreeing: confrontational vs. avoidance
- Scheduling: linear-time vs. flexible-time
- Persuading: applications-first vs. principles-first
A common question I am asked is “How do I motivate my team?” I usually respond, “You don’t. However what you can do is create the right environment, the right factors, and opportunities that will motivate each of your team members to give their best.”
Every person on your team is different. They have different interests, strengths, skills, needs, desires and behavioural characteristics. Different work will energise different people. By building a relationship that is based on trust, respect and a belief in each person, you will be able to gather information to help you answer the above question. The information you learn will help you to:
- Agree on objectives that will give each person a sense of achievement from their work and opportunities to learn and further develop their strengths. Studies from Gallup (Rath, 2007) indicate that individuals who do have the opportunity to focus on their strengths every day are six times as likely to be engaged in their jobs. Their studies also suggests that when a manager focuses on an individual’s strengths the chances of them being disengaged is 1%.
- Delegate interesting, meaningful and challenging work appropriately to your team members. The work you delegate should create the right opportunities for growth, learning and development and advancement. Be there to support, encourage and coach your team member. People want to feel that they are making a contribution that there is a purpose behind what they are doing.
- Take a genuine interest in them as a person, their career aspirations/path feedback and work-life balance. Work with them to identify steps and actions that they can take to move them along their desired career path while achieving their desired work-life balance.
- Give recognition and feedback in a way that acknowledges their strengths, skills and that they are valued. Help them to feel that they are making progress. Too many managers focus on weakness’s rather than strengths. Gallup research (Rath, 2007) has shown that when a manager focuses on an individual’s weakness’s the chances of them being disengaged is 22%. However, this is better than when a manager primarily ignores a team member when the chances of that person being disengaged is 40%. Therefore, do not ignore your good or high performing team members.
- Empower your team members. Share your vision for the team and what is expected of each person clearly and precisely and ask them for their ideas, input, feedback. Genuinely listen to them. If your team know, are bought into your vision and know clearly what is expected of them i.e. a detailed understanding of what they are supposed to do, how that fits in with what everyone else is supposed to do and how those expectations change when circumstances change (Wagner & Harter, 2006) they will be more creative. Help each team member to feel that their opinions count. Explore their input with them openly, act on it and implement where appropriate
What about pay? In Dan Pink’s YouTube video “The surprising truth about what motivates” he says that you need to pay people enough to take the issue of money off the table and that for complex tasks we are more motivated by mastery, autonomy, and purpose.
Have the right conversations with each person in your team. It will provide you with the information and answers to create an engaging and motivating workplace for every individual. Challenge yourself to build these relationships, to have a genuine interest in each person and their growth and development, set yourself objectives to create a motivating environment and measure your progress through your team’s engagement and results, look for feedback and ideas from your team to help you with this.References Rath, T. (2007). Strengths Finder 2.0. New York: Gallup Press. Wagner, R., & Harter, J. K. (2006). 12 The Elements of Great Managing. New York: Gallup Press.
Dymphna Ormond is an IMI associate who teaches on Front Line Management and Essential Skills of Management programmes. Dymphna has over 14 years of experience designing and delivering training that engages, challenges and stimulates the thinking of participants. Her areas of expertise and interest are in employee engagement, leadership and management skills, presenting and communicating with impact. [post_title] => 5 Tips for Motivating Employees [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 5-tips-motivating-employees [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-11-08 09:56:21 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-11-08 09:56:21 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=19182 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 4779 [post_author] => 15 [post_date] => 2013-09-06 09:39:08 [post_date_gmt] => 2013-09-06 09:39:08 [post_content] => With the surge of new computing capabilities afforded to us through cloud computing and data analytics there has been a significant increase in the ability to source, integrate, manage, and deliver data within organisations. The emergence of a new breed of technologies means that traditional restrictions on data processing have been overcome and the resulting boost to information capacity means that all organisations can become more agile, flexible, lean and efficient The term Intelligent Enterprise is being used to describe those that seizing the opportunities presented. This has led to a demand for people that can make this “Intelligent Enterprise” a reality. The bottom line is that without the right skills and capabilities, new technological innovations will not only be of no benefit to firms but may actually become a disadvantage to those that are unprepared to implement them. Indeed, staffing and skills have been singled out by firms as the top barrier to Agile Data Analytics, with 61% of respondents citing them as a challenge in our recent report for the Cutter Consortium. So what can organisations do to become Intelligent Enterprises and get the most from big data? We believe they need to develop three main skill bases: 1. Technology support 2. A deep analytical capability 3. A savvy understanding of what big data can deliver Organisations will increasingly be employing not only Data Miners, Data Scientists, Data Architects, Database Administrators Business Developers and Business Analysts but those individuals that combine skills from those roles such as Project Managers, Data Visulalisers and Programmers Developers. [caption id="" style="float:center" width="300"] The Intelligent Enterprise - mapping skills and roles[/caption] At the centre of the skills bases are the Chief Information Officers (CIO) and Chief Data Offers (CDO) that will drive the transformation. With a skill set that covers all three categories, individuals are ideally placed to successfully lead their organisation into an era of extracting tangible value which is currently hidden in organisational data. It is from this perspective that we have designed the IMI Diploma in Data Business, which provides knowledge and insight into each to three areas. To find out more about how you can develop these skills come to our Information Evening for our Diploma in Data Business and Diploma Cloud Strategy in the Marker Hotel, Dublin 2, at 6pm on Tuesday 10th September register here. Tadhg Nagle is joint Programme Director of the UCC IMI Diploma in Data Business and a lecturer and researcher in Information Systems at University College Cork. With a background in financial services his expertise is in strategic innovation and emerging and disruptive technologies. [post_title] => 3 critical skills to develop if you want to work for the Intelligent Enterprise [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 3criticalskills-6 [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-11-08 11:08:50 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-11-08 11:08:50 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/news-and-events/?p=2142 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 16052 [post_author] => 88 [post_date] => 2016-09-28 11:32:28 [post_date_gmt] => 2016-09-28 11:32:28 [post_content] => Frances Ruane served as Director of the ESRI from 2006 to 2015. She previously taught in the Dept of Economics at TCD, and earlier in her career she work at Queens University in Canada and at the Central Bank of Ireland and the IDA. In Ireland, her current activities include chair of the Interdepartmental Group on Making Work Pay for People with Disabilities at the Department of Social Welfare, membership of the Public Interest Committee of KPMG, and an Honorary Professor in the Department of Economics at Trinity College, where she contributes to the MSc in Economic Policy Studies. She is also a Research Affiliate at the ESRI and a member of the Royal Irish Academy.
IMI: Based on your current work – if you only had 6 words of advice to give a business – what would they be?
FR: Look positively beyond the immediate.IMI: What does this mean? FR: After a period of rapid growth, the global financial crisis meant that Irish businesses had to concentrate on handling immediate challenges. They managed that disruption well and this contributed to the strength of Ireland’s recovery. But the focus on the immediate has left many businesses with legacy issues (debt burdens, under-investment in innovation, poor staff morale). And now businesses need to prepare for the medium term when we discover what is really meant by ‘Brexit means Brexit’. Forward looking businesses leaders need now to ask: what could Brexit mean for my market and company? Where am I exposed to risk and how can I mitigate it? [post_title] => "Look positively beyond the immediate" Six Word Wisdom from Frances Ruane [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => look-positively-beyond-immediate-six-word-wisdom-frances-ruane [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-11-08 09:58:39 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-11-08 09:58:39 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=16052 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 7017 [post_author] => 32 [post_date] => 2014-05-08 15:28:31 [post_date_gmt] => 2014-05-08 15:28:31 [post_content] => [post_title] => 3 slick selling techniques you should take from the Time-share Salesperson [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => can-learn-selling-street-vendors [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-11-13 12:36:17 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-11-13 12:36:17 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=7017 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw )  => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 25404 [post_author] => 139 [post_date] => 2019-04-12 15:09:34 [post_date_gmt] => 2019-04-12 15:09:34 [post_content] => [post_title] => Agility: elusive, but essential and the key to thinking differently [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => agility-elusive-essential-key-thinking-differently [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2019-11-27 21:12:32 [post_modified_gmt] => 2019-11-27 21:12:32 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.imi.ie/?p=25404 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) )
The Big Interview: Danica Murphy, Mastering the Performance Mindset
Ahead of the IMI Executive Series we sat down with Danica Murphy, lead designer for the short programme Mastering the Performance Mindset, to ask why it is so crucial for the future-fit leader to have the right mindset to succeed in an ever shifting business landscape.
What is the ‘Performance Mindset’?
My working definition is that it is a mindset supported with behaviours, practices and habits to sustain an individuals’ success in a world of huge emotional demand and complexity.
Why has this concept come to the fore now? What’s different today from 20 or 30 years ago?
Quite simply, the level of complexity and pace in today’s business environment is phenomenal. Gartner has said that the average organisation has undergone five enterprise-wide changes in the past three years, and nearly three-quarters of CEOs expect this pace to accelerate.
I also know that from doing strategic facilitation with companies how the demands have changed. When I began, it was ten-year business plans, then it became five – today it’s challenging to get a business to think beyond a two-year plan.
You’ve drawn out three main areas within the performance mindset – Focus, Resilience and Wellness. Why those three areas?
I see those three areas as sturdy legs of a single stool, with the seat being agility and adaptability. In other words, the outcome of developing these areas is the ability to respond in this complex world, make good decisions and succeed.
Taking Focus, what makes a leader become unfocussed? Is it innate human behaviour to lose focus or are there processes we can control?
There’re two fundamental factors in becoming unfocussed.
The first is a process in our brain that rewards interruption. We like being interrupted because it makes us feel stimulated and that we’re learning something new. Stanford University did some research that said, ‘the human mind left to its own devices will seek distraction almost 50% of its waking time’.
We need to counter that by first recognising it as an unavoidable fact, and just building structures around it.
The second is knowing what the ideal balance for focus is. There’s a neuroscientist called Friederike Fabritius, and what she says the brain needs is ‘Fun, Fear and Focus’, which is the ideal combination of noradrenaline, dopamine and acetoxolone.
What that really mean is that we create the circumstances in our environment that allow our brain to be in its highly focussed state.
So, what creates the unfocussed brain? It’s the absence of those things.
Taking wellness, it can often be a topic that leaders ignore or pay lip-service to when a wellness programme is being implemented in their organisation. Why should a CEO take the time to develop their own wellness?
It’s fascinating how good we are at changing the goalposts when it comes to ourselves rather than for others. If the same CEO that paid lip-service to their own wellness went to watch an athlete perform and found out afterwards that the athlete hadn’t – by choice – slept or eaten in the previous 24 hours, they’d rightfully be furious.
Why shouldn’t that be the case for themselves? Especially when they are running a much longer race.
If a CEOs objective is to hit the next quarterly target and that’s all they can see, they need to step back and to realise that the overall objective is to hit all the future quarterly targets too. It’s not based on anecdotal evidence or perceived wisdom that wellness will help CEOs perform at pace over time, it’s hard science.
A recent piece of research out of Harvard took brain scans of 63 Fortune 500 c-suite executives and catalogued their behaviours (nutrition, sleep, alcohol intake etc.) over an 18-month period. The executives that performed badly – low levels of sleep, high alcohol – had measurably lower performance in work, and even had lower salary levels.
Taking one aspect of resilience – could you just give a few pointers for a leader when it comes to dealing with failure within their organisation?
I think this is one of the most powerful areas when it comes to how effective organisations are, and I particularly see it when working with high-potential, youthful employees.
I thoroughly believe that we need controlled failure. Our employees need to know that whatever risks they take they are, first, not going to die, but mainly that they can envisage best case and worst-case scenarios and not feel scared by either.
For leaders, simple switches in language such as talking about ‘the next time’ when failure occurs can make a big difference in the mindset of their teams.
What would the transformation look like in a leader that made this type of development a priority?
It’s going to allow them to be healthier, happier and more successful. They are words that are used so often they can sound almost trite but, when you really look at their meaning, who wouldn’t want that?
Danica Murphy is the lead designer on the new IMI short programme for senior leaders, Mastering the Performance Mindset. To apply for a place on the Mastering the Performance Mindset programme, click here.
This interview is an annotated version an episode from the IMI Talking Leadership podcast. To listen to the full interview, click here.