Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Motivate Yourself And Your Employees

Some people work with pride and integrity simply because they believe in what they are doing, believe in the vision of the company and love that they GET to do it every day.

While others work only for the pay they receive with the attitude that they HAVE to do it - often with hate for the company they work for dislike for the team they a part of.

Which are you?

And more importantly, which is the best description for the people that work for you?

Attitude is everything. I don't care what you do for a living, if you enjoy what you do, and look forward to doing it everyday - it will show. You will work harder and be more productive than those who don't care.

And believe it or not, attitude towards our jobs, whether you are flipping burgers for local fast food restaurant, piloting 747s for a major airline, or CEO of a Fortune 100 Business, can be predicted, relatively accurately, based on how people respond to a few specific questions. These questions are:

1. Do I understand and believe in the vision of the business I'm working for?
2. Do I clearly understand my role in the organization, including the responsibilities I have and how I will be judged / rated in performing this job?
3. Do I believe the rewards (compensation) are fair throughout the business - based on performance and not something arbitrary, like color of skin, age, sex, or personal / familial relationships? And that you are being fairly compensated for what you do?
4. Do I have the training I need to do my job properly?
5. Do I have all the tools and procedures I need to fulfill my responsibilities?
6. Are my talents recognized and understood by my superiors?
7. Am I encouraged to use my individual talents to fulfill my daily activities or through some other process?
8. Is it clear to me how I can improve myself and am I given full capacity to do so?

The more questions you can answer above with a resounding YES, the more likely you enjoy what you are doing, the more positive your attitude will be every day and the more motivated and committed to the job you will be. However, conversely, the more NOs, that you answer, the more likely you will feel discouraged, disenfranchised, and simply working for the pay, and not because you enjoy it.

Ask yourself these questions and ask them of your employees. Don't just do it once, make it a system that you rely on to understand the state of your business as much as any financial or sales analysis.

Do your best to encourage everyone to answer honestly. Work not just to make yourself and them happy and to give them more pay, but instead to turn your and their NOs to YESes. Figure out where you and your senior team lack in leading those who do the hard work everyday.

And watch your business grow in ways you wouldn't have expected, with such simple, "soft" techniques. Because when you have motivated employees and motivated leaders, who GET come to work everyday to do what they enjoy doing, and not HAVE to come to work in order to pay their bills, you will reap the benefits of Higher Customer Satisfaction, Larger Market Share, Better Employee Retention and More Productive Employees. Oh and let's not forget, more money in the bottom line - and cash in your back account.

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