Thanks for taking the time to open and read my points of view, I’m extremely passionate about all the topics I blog about and even if you take one thing from this let me know. 

Finding that magic mix of people to deliver exceptional service is one of the most challenging elements all organisations and leaders experience. I have spent over fifteen years in leadership roles, including countless hours being trained on different leadership styles and being told the best approaches to lead a team successfully.

I found that more focus was put on the attainment and execution of skilled people and ensuring they are becoming the best they can be in the actual job function. Of course, having the right skills is 100% crucial, and I am not challenging that. I feel organisations and leaders can fail by not focusing on the motivations of a team or individual.

You only have to look at highly skilled sports teams to see the impact of motivation and the influence of leaders who harness the power of a well-motivated team. In 2015, Leicester City won the premier league in England, probably one of the most outstanding performances across a whole season when you look at the level of skill available compared to larger, more cash-rich clubs.  They deployed several strategies throughout the season, which enabled them to elevate the team’s motivation to deliver consistently.

Throughout my years in leadership roles, I found myself asking questions in the past that I struggled to answer, like:

It is because a motivated team is driven to achieve their goals, surpass expectations, and deliver exceptional results. They have a sense of purpose, passion, and enthusiasm that propels them forward, even in the face of challenges. The power of a highly motivated individual or team cannot be underestimated, as it can lead to increased productivity, improved performance, and overall success.

On the flip side, if the skill level is not at the required standard, no matter how motivated your team or individual is, they will have a ceiling to what level of performance can be achieved.

How do we break down what motivation is?

I believe I have always been a good judge of understanding the principles of what motivates a team, but this only became clearer after becoming a practitioner of motivational maps.

Motivational Maps is an ISO-accredited tool used extensively by coaches around the world, and well before I became a practitioner, I took an assessment with my coach to support my understanding of how I’m satisfying my motivations. I was surprised at how incredibly accurate the analysis was, but it only made true sense when discussing it with someone who knows how to interpret it. With support from my coach, I could highlight areas that needed attention and work on a couple of new focus points. This experience also enabled me to see how incorporating it into my coaching will add value to the individuals and teams I work with.

Being motivated is not just about seeing that smile on someone’s face; it’s built up around various drivers. Different things motivate different people, and applying a single strategy to motivate an entire team will not always work unless everyone is motivated by the same things.

To be able to apply the right strategies to motivate your team and individuals, you need to be able to understand their motivational drivers fully. These drivers are commonly seen in three cluster groups.

You cannot train yourself to be a specific profile of motivations as you can with skills; your motivations will change throughout your career and are built up from your experiences in work and life. When providing motivational coaching, I usually see that up to three drivers stand out and provide the core of what motivates an individual, although sometimes this can vary. Fulfilling your top motivational drivers is essential if there is to be any absolute satisfaction at work. If you don’t understand what motivates you, how can you ensure that your work is being done with a high level of performance?

For example, my top motivations are making a difference and having a purpose. If my role at work and home life do not satisfy those drivers, I will become demotivated if I don’t act. Likewise, I might be well satisfied so I can focus on ensuring I continue to operate in such a way as I’m aware of how vital those drivers are to me.

It’s also essential to understand what motivates you the least, as it can provide valuable insights as to whether it’s causing you a challenge. I recently completed a coaching session with an individual whose lowest motivational driver was ‘The Defender’, meaning they became de-motivated when too much routine became evident and work was too predictable. This individual was not feeling motivated, and after discussing, the individual found a correlation between the lack of change and repetitiveness in the job, which was becoming a challenge. This enabled the individual to speak more openly with the manager of the team about the challenges and ended up being able to change the job role slightly so that specific project work was allocated, meaning that a bit more variety came into play and increased overall motivation. The result was a happier individual and manager!

Considering how your lowest motivator can make you feel about others is also helpful. We have all been in that scenario where someone at work rubs you up the wrong way. What I found eye-opening was that ‘the star’ was my lowest motivator, and low and behold, a person who was recently affecting my motivation had the profile of ‘the star’. You are more likely to be demotivated by others who operate their highest motivators with the lowest to you. The good news is that I now understand that, and it helped me navigate my approach so it doesn’t affect my motivations.

Where can assessing motivational drivers be of value?

The benefit of assessing motivation drivers and checking their satisfaction can be used across various scenarios. It’s always about the individuals, but below gives you a picture of some of the settings where understanding motivations is vital:

  • Valuable insights when evolving teams and functions.
  • Enabling leadership teams to understand each other’s motivations.
  • Support performance reviews or annual appraisals
  • If planning a project, assess that you have motivated teams to deliver.
  • Look at what motivates your team and the impact of those motivations on delivery.
  • Enhance recruiting processes to assess team fit.
  • Support succession and promotion planning.
  • Assist in understanding why your team is successful or has challenges.
  • Give a picture of how satisfied your teams are to deliver.
  • Help leaders get a 360 review from their teams.

Tangible benefits that will be gained

Motivation impacts all aspects of our lives with benefits within individual and team settings. They can vary depending on your setting, but at minimum, they would look at productivity, performance and a number highlighted in the graphic.

Don’t underestimate the power of a highly motivated team. I have seen teams overdeliver when the pressure is on them and underdeliver when things are not working as they should. When motivation is high, we are all more likely to achieve our goals and willing to put in the necessary time and effort to complete the job.

There will be a team, an individual, or even yourself currently delivering exceptional results. Stop for a moment and take some time to reflect on what is driving those results. We should not just look at areas causing challenges but seize the opportunity to take that exceptional individual through a motivational assessment and ensure that focus continues to thrive and provide outstanding services to your business and clients!

Take 15 minutes out of your day and get in touch to see how motivational coaching will enhance yourself and your business.

Thanks for reading!

if you wish to discuss how Motivational-based Coaching will enhance you and your teams,

get in touch.

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