A long time ago I had a conversation with a District Manager about motivating people. They had this big explanation as to why it was SO important.
At the end of the explanation, I aggressively disagreed…
I don’t motivate. I don’t teach others how to motivate. It’s not our job, and it’s not an effective form of leadership.
Let me explain…
I believe it is our job to FIND motivated people. Self-motivated. Driven. Ambitious.
See, motivation, to me, is an internal trait. You gotta bring it to me so I can help you do something with it.
When it’s missing, then we have to motivate people to do their job…in short, we have the wrong people.
I came up with an analogy to explain my argument:
I’d rather inspire my Varsity Team to win championships than motivate my JV Team to try harder.
Ahhhhhh, now inspiration…THAT’S the business we’re in!
We inspire Action. Change. Growth.
Our conversations should make people want to go do the things they struggle with.
Maybe we add clarity…and then they see it.
Maybe we add urgency…and they go do it.
Maybe we show them we care, so they know we’re her to catch them if they fall.
Maybe we teach them an easier way, so they can overcome it.
Let me explain the difference in these 2 real quick:
Motivating = Talking people into trying harder. They don’t WANT IT, and you try convince them they do. You want it for them more than they want it for themselves.
Inspiring = Challenging people to see more. They WANT IT, (bad!) and are on the right track, but on the wrong train. You help them find the right train.
If you want motivated people, you have to find them, not motivate them.
Here I’ve got 13 Simple Inspirational Quotes for Employee Appreciation
And you should check out my 7 Employee Motivation Quotes to Shake Things Up…they are NOT what you think!