Motivation – An Inside Job!
The word motivation is derived from the word motive, which means the internal drives, desires, needs and wants of a person. It is important to note is that it is “Internal” and is the process of an internal drive that causes people to take action toward their goals. People have many different factors that can personally stimulate their behaviour. In the workplace it can include such things as a desire for money, recognition, job satisfaction, success, teamwork, leadership and others.
The performance of employees is a product of both their abilities (e.g. skills & experience) and motivation. An employee who is de-motivated by their circumstances is unlikely to perform well at work, whereas a motivated employee can often deliver far more than is expected from them!
I think one of the most important things a leader needs to understand is the ways in which they can arouse an employee’s interest in performance. By creating an incentive plan that fosters the desire to work and encourages employees to commit to achieving goals, will help leaders create teams that have the motivation to succeed. Leadership is creating a powerful vision that others are motivated and empowered to work toward. When the need to produce the vision is satisfied, employees are motivated to continue to reach other goals.
Anyone in a leadership role understands the need to lead by example, do what you want others to do. If you observe people’s behaviour you can often determine what motivates them. There are both internal and external motivators.
- The satisfaction of doing a good job or successfully completing a difficult task or project.
- When you love what you do every day, especially if what you do is in alignment with your values
- People can motivate you (actually inspire you too)
- Fear can motivate us (fear of reprimand) –this can be negative and motivating just the same (ie could take us away from danger)
- Beliefs you hold about live can be motivating (living in possibility)
- Seminars, trainers, books can be motivational
- Messages in cards, songs, poems and stories can all motivate
Messages in cards, songs, poems and stories can all motivate
Is money a motivator?
In his book “Drive” Daniel Pink notes that any discussion about motivation in the workplace is a fact of life. People need to make a living. Contracts, salary, benefits and a few perks are only baseline rewards. If someone’s baseline reward is not adequate or equitable, the focus will be on the unfairness of the situation and the anxiety of the situation. As a leader you can expect to get very little motivation. The best use of money as a motivator is to pay people enough to take the issue of money off the table.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
A theory in psychology proposed by Abraham Maslow in his 1943 paper “A Theory of Human Motivation”. Maslow subsequently extended the idea to include his observations of humans’ innate curiosity. His theories parallel many other theories of human developmental psychology, some of which focus on describing the stages of growth in humans. Maslow used the terms Physiological, Safety, Belongingness and Love, Esteem, and Self-Actualization needs to describe the pattern that human motivations generally move through.
Depending on where a person is in their life could change what motivates them.
We all have a deep source of motivation that is available anyplace, anytime all you need to do is look and connect with it
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily” ~ Zig Ziglar”