April 12, 2006
Security tops the 'motivation' list
What is the most effective way to motivate others?
Over and over, enthusiastic and high-performing individuals
say they most like to work for people who pay genuine
attention to nine basic human needs.
Beyond food, clothing, shelter, education and training,
those needs also include reassurance, respect, recognition
Leaders who are also effective motivators pay for performance
and enable those who work with and for them to care for
their own loved ones. Appropriate salaries and high-quality
benefits - including insurance, education and training
- communicate that all of the employee's family members
Listening, leadership and character are the behavioral
building blocks of motivation. Perceptive observers know
just how much consistency exists between what leaders
say and what they do. It is true that one cannot really
fool most of the people most of the time. They see. They
know. They remember.
So how does an individual in a position of power make
sure that these nine needs are being acknowledged and
fulfilled? The answer is simple: learn them, understand
them and live them - all the time.
Questions that persons of influence need to answer:
- Do those you intend to motivate have access and capability
to purchase healthy food?
- Are you confident that those for whom you are a steward
are able to provide proper clothing to themselves and
those for whom they are responsible?
- What is the quality of housing of those you have
chosen to lead?
- Is the education they are afforded adequate to leverage
their talent and the capabilities of those they support?
- Will the training provided enable them to build substantively
for the future?
- Is the culture of the organization one of encouragement
- Do all stakeholders know that dignity and respect
are central to how decisions are made and actions carried
- Is achievement identified and celebrated on a regular
and frequent basis, identifying those who have made
notable sacrifices and constructive contributions?
- Are individuals able to see their value in the form
of rewards, whether in terms of new title, greater
influence, more money or enlarged responsibilities?
Integrity-centered leaders say "yes" to all of
the above. Motivated individuals have come to expect "yes" answers
and are more productive when they know those in positions
of power and influence know, care and are willing to take
actions to address problem areas.