A successful business is usually run by a passionate team of people. If you want your business to run like a well-oiled machine, you need to motivate your individual employees to become a passionate team. Passion for work is generated by the value of that work, which means that the responsibility for generating passion should be placed on manager or directors, and not on employees. Instead, leaders should create business environments that motivate people to work together and inspire one another.
1. Assemble the right group and focus on teamwork: Hiring the right people for your team is essential. Not only should they be passionate and motivated people themselves, but they need to be able to work well in groups. Hire for passion and commitment over experience and credentials. Just because a person has an impressive résumé doesn’t mean that he or she will have enough interest in the business. During interviews, try to get a sense of what the potential employee believes in and inspires to achieve. Once you have built a solid team, focus on the group as whole. Teamwork and cooperation will help fuel passion.
2. Communicate: Having the right people doesn’t ensure that things will always run smoothly. It is up to the leaders to sit down regularly with them and discuss what is going well and what isn’t. People need to feel like they can speak freely without fear of negative consequences. Creating a safe and trusting atmosphere will help build a cohesive and passionate business team. The art of communication should be a blend of talking and listening. Leaders need to make sure that they aren’t being overbearing when it comes to communication; remember that it’s a two-way street. Instead, it’s important to listen carefully to what people are saying. You never know where the next great idea will come from.
3. Mediate issues and address the negatives: Just as passion is a positive, contagious trait, so are dissatisfaction and indifference. It is easy to get discouraged by today’s market, so it is vital that the leaders serve as the organization’s cheerleader. However, leaders can’t always just focus on the positives; they see firsthand what is working and what isn’t. Since leaders have a relationship with people in all levels of the company, they can more readily mobilize employees to solve problems. If there are problems in the office, they need to be addressed. Not dealing with issues immediately can result in a decrease in motivation to work as a team, so it’s important that mediation occurs as quickly as possible.
4. Work hard, play hard: By instilling this notion into your team members, you will promote internal balance and give your employees the energy to accomplish more. Some people focus on working so hard that they forget why they are in business in the first place. By allowing your team to reap the rewards of their hard work, it will help them stay positive and motivated. A good work ethic will keep people on task, and it will establish a culture where everyone understands that long hours are sometimes required as long as the sacrifice is recognized and rewarded. Plus, hosting after-work events or holiday parties will help establish a more personal relationship among your team members.
5. Aim high: Those who care about the work and set a high standard challenge others to do the same. Having ambition is what drives a person to work hard to achieve goals. However, having high expectations does not mean giving people more work to do. It means inspiring people to try their hardest and keep moving forward. Without ambition we would stagnate. To motivate your team members, you have to appeal to their values and also encourage people to work for a common, and unifying, goal.