The Daily Challenge: Manager to Leader: Motivation

 

Understanding the distinction between leading and managing can make the difference between assigning tasks and inspiring growth.

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Three Ways to Motivate Your Team Members by What Matters to Them the Most

Read Time: 3 Minutes

It’s one thing to know what a good leader is, and quite another to turn that knowledge into reality. Leadership is a skill that can—and should—be practiced and developed at all stages of your career.

When stakes are high and deadlines are short, it’s easy to get wrapped up in trying to manage your team members responsibilities and forget to lead. It’s often only in hindsight that we recognize the mistake and can course correct.

Understanding the distinction between leading and managing can make the difference between assigning tasks and inspiring growth.

In this context, it’s easiest to think of a manager as the person who has the authority (usually through some sort of hierarchy) to assign tasks, plan short-term, and create incentives for action (i.e., deadlines, money, praise). While managers can get the job done, if they don’t slow down to build strong relationships, it’s easy to miss out on long-term opportunities for individual growth and enhanced team performance.

Meanwhile, leaders can influence their team members by gaining their trust and respect and learning what drives them from within.

When a leader appeals to intrinsic motivation, they create a culture of respect and trust, fulfilling their team member’s needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness. Team members who are driven from within show more interest, excitement, and confidence in the workplace, and in turn show more persistence and creativity in their performance.

Today, consider these steps to become a stronger leader and continue engaging with what motivates your team members from within.

Step 1: Outline or review the values and goals of the people you lead.

Step 2. Look at the projects you are managing and the motivation associated with those. Do you motivate your team members intrinsically or extrinsically? As a refresher, here are a few examples of intrinsic and extrinsic motivators.

Step 3: In the cases where you motivate people extrinsically, is there a way to shift to intrinsic motivation, using the information from Step 1?


Pro-tip: Think about the vision for the individuals you manage and the projects you work on. Ability to inspire with vision is one of the important qualities distinguishing a leader from a manager.



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