The Carrot and the Stick: Choosing the Right Motivators

The Right Motivation by Laura Stack

Forget offering bored employees the same old brass rings to grab for. Make them want to go for the gold. I don't necessarily mean financial motivation, though that may help. What they really need is purpose: a chance to excel at something that matters. Here's how to help them avoid boredom: Keep the Communication Lines Open. Touch base regularly with your top employees, allowing them open access to you. Stay alert for signs of boredom. Ask them what they're working on that excites them—or what would excite them if nothing currently does. Offer Them Tasks With a Real Chance of Failure. You likely have blue-sky projects that could be extremely profitable if done well. They're challenging enough that most people can't achieve success, so hand these to your bright but bored. The i … [Read more...]

The Motivated Coworker: How to Increase Team Productivity Even When You’re Not the Team Leader

The Motivated Coworker: How to Increase Team Productivity Even When You're Not the Team Leader by Laura Stack #productivity

“People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily.”—Zig Ziglar, American motivational speaker and author. Active, participative teamwork has become crucial to the modern business environment. Gone are the days when one person could anchor a team by doing everything well—or doing everything, period. Even superstar athletes like Labron James and Sidney Crosby depend on the talents and hard work of their teammates to excel. Modern business is too complex to know or do it all; this has necessarily led to specialization. We need capable people in multiple slots to accomplish specific business goals, no matter how narrow those goals—especially in this era of business agility. Ideally, your supervisor would tie you all together int … [Read more...]

The ABCs of Motivating Your Team

The ABCs of Motivating Your Team by Laura Stack #productivity #leadership

"New Employee Incentive Plan: Work or get fired." -- Hand-lettered sign seen behind the counter of a rustic country store. According to a recent story in Inc. magazine, Brian Halligan, CEO of software marketing firm Hubspot, has a singular way of handling go-getter employees who present him with great ideas with the potential to improve the company's bottom line. He fires them. The punchline? He fires them from their “day jobs.” He then appoints them as the CEOs of their own change initiatives, something like little start-up companies within the company. Halligan refers to this as his Mini-CEO Program, and he does it to both decentralize the company and empower team players. You can bet it motivates the heck out of his employees to do their very best for him, so they'll have a shot a … [Read more...]

The Why of Productivity – Who Cares, Anyway?

Why is productivity important?  More importantly, why is productivity important to you?  There is not just one pat answer to this question.  My “why” is likely different than your “why.”  One of the keys to productivity is finding YOUR “why.”  For most people, an external reason like “My boss expects more of me” is not always the most motivating factor.  For me, getting to the heart of why I do what I do is most motivating.  Is the need to be more productive exciting and motivating to you, or does it drain and exhaust you just thinking about it?  If the latter is true for you, perhaps you haven’t gotten clear on why being productive is important. It all comes down to your personal goals and what you want the picture of your life to look like.  Sure, you may need to be more productive at wo … [Read more...]

Kick up your productivity by getting out of your comfort zone

Take a look at yourself. Is your life the same every single day? If you feel like you're wasting your energy because you're unchallenged and uninspired, you're probably right. There's a good reason the saying "Grow or die" is a something of a cliché, because it verbalizes a deep-rooted truth about human nature: you need to keep to growing intellectually all the days of your life. If that sounds good to you, then use these tips to help you get growing. 1. Challenge yourself to learn something new every day. A lack of challenges is a real energy killer. How can you be anything but bored if you don't learn something new occasionally? Human knowledge is so vast and complex that there's always something new to be learned, so get to it. 2. Exercise your creativity. There's a reason a zeal to c … [Read more...]