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How do I motivate people?

Dernière mise à jour : 31 mars 2022

[#INSIGHT] Question from one of our Team Leaders yesterday during our Management Meeting:

"How do I motivate someone apathetic?"

Before trying to give some elements of answer, I would like to highlight 2 things:

- First: Motivating people is one of the most difficult, time-consuming, and interesting aspects of Management. It is very legitimate, healthy and necessary as a manager, as a leader, to ask yourself this question, no matter your level of seniority. A leader's number one duty is to continuously self-question in order to fine-tune his/her approach and ensure his/her team's success.

- Second: There is no recipe to motivate people. Each individual is unique and you need to adjust your communication, management and actions to each member of your team.

That said, I believe there are fundamentals that can be applied in order to "create a spark". You will need to tailor your approach in order to bring the most added-value to your team member while ensuring they are gladly contributing to the well-being of your company.

Here are my suggestions:

a. Your Mindset: As a leader, you need to ensure you are "bulletproof". Keep it up no matter what. Positivity is contagious, you need to show the example! How do you want to create a spark if you are down?

b. Identify Levers: You need to know what are the key professional centers of interest, drivers, ambitions and priorities of the employees you manage. If you do not know, ask! It is the only way for you to create a solid and reliable base of communication.

c. Challenge: Define (together) an ambitious and measurable roadmap that will challenge the employee while bringing value to the company and helping him or her reach his/her ambitions. Facing a challenge and feeling supported is usually the most stimulating way to boost yourself and gain some energy, especially if you know what is at "the end of the tunnel".

d. Give Feedback: Create a climate of trust and respect while ensuring you provide a fair and stimulating feedback to the employee along the way in order for him/her to continuously adjust and improve. If you feel a team member can do better, say it. If you feel someone has done a great job, say it. Always make sure to put the light towards a positive outcome and provide support when needed.

e. Reward: If the objectives set together are achieved and delivered, it is your duty as a leader to share your appreciation and to recognize the achievement with words and actions. Say what you do and do what you say: If you had committed to something, whatever it is, honor your commitment. It is your best way to gain respect, loyalty and legitimacy as a leader.

Management is a never-ending learning curve that you will need to fine-tune along the way and throughout your career. There are no good managers, there are only learning managers.

Being a leader is aiming at the best for and from your team, but it is as well, setting goals and limits. Both need to be clearly defined for yourself and for your team. Giving visibility and setting standards for Excellence is the best way to ensure your team's success and continuous professional stimulation.

Enjoy the process, ask feedback, self-question and have fun!

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