Does your team lack motivation? Is trust dwindling? Are your people fighting to protect their own self-interests instead of the interests of co-workers and customers? If so, the cause is most likely a low level of employee engagement. This is not uncommon. In fact, a recent study by Gallup indicates that 70% of U.S. employees are not engaged at work. Disengaged employees eventually quit their jobs.
If you’re like most, you’re perplexed as to why this is happening. In the same Gallup study, we learn that 89% of owners and managers think that their employees are leaving to make more money somewhere else, when in reality only 12% leave for more money.
What you need to know isn’t what you want to hear. What you need to know is that most of your people quit you long before they quit their job. Check out three ways you may be killing your teams motivation, and be encouraged as you learn how to fix it.
In his book, How to Win Friends and Influence People, Dale Carnegie states that constructive criticism is an oxymoron. It’s true. Criticism of any kind tends to tear people down, not build them up. The next time you feel the need to criticize, use the PCP technique instead:
Praise –Call out what’s good.
Coach –Point out opportunities for improvement.
Praise –Encourage improvement.
You may have heard this referred to as a motivational sandwich.
Clarity is critical for business success. Do you have clearly articulated goals for your business? Have you shared them with your team and the role they play in helping you achieve those goals, if not, your team may be suffering from misdirection.
Take some time to define your goals using the SMART framework, then share them with your team. Your goals must be:
Specific –Clearly define and identify your desired future accomplishment.
Measurable –Quantify expected results using dates, dollars and dimensions.
Attainable –Provide proof of achievability.
Realistic –Display sensible and practical pathways for success.
Time bound –Define timelines and due dates for accomplishment.
Once you’ve done this, encourage your team to create their own SMART goals and share them with each other.
Few things are more disheartening to a team than a leader who doesn’t give his people equal opportunity for success and failure. There is a fine line between being a driven-leader and a micromanager. If you find yourself meddling too much, try the PPP approach:
Progress –Ask for a list of accomplishments weekly.
Plans –Review goals and objectives monthly.
Problems –Be available and approachable when problems arise daily.
Eliminating criticism, clearing up misdirection and minimizing micromanagement takes time, focus and determination. However, don’t let this hold you back. Be a fearless leader and motivate your team! When you do this you will keep them inspired and focused on fulfilling the mission of the organization. When inspired, your people will feel empowered. When empowered, they’ll contribute. When they contribute, they will be motivated and when they are motivated, they’ll be engaged.
Founder of RedRock Leadership
Founder of RedRock Leadership