The following is a guest post by Dr. Heidi Grant Halvorson.
Is your employee a risk-taker, or does he avoid risks like the plague? Does she get uncomfortable with too much optimism or praise, or is she known for her sunny outlook? Do some assignments always seem particularly hard for her, while she excels at others naturally?
The answers to these questions give you a window into your employee’s motivational focus – something every leader needs to understand in order to give feedback and create incentives that are persuasive and motivating.
There are two ways to look at the goals we pursue at work (and in life). Let’s start with a goal many of us share: “doing my job well.” For some of us, doing our jobs well is about the potential for advancement, achievement and rewards. It’s about what we might gain if we are successful, how we might end up better off. If you are (or your employee is) someone who sees goals this way, you have what’s called a promotion focus.
For the rest of us, doing our jobs well is about security – about not losing everything we’ve worked so hard for. When you are prevention focused, you want to avoid danger, fulfill your responsibilities, and be someone people can count on. You want to keep things running smoothly.
What’s important to know is that promotion and prevention-focused people work very differently to Click here to continue reading »”Is Your Team Promotion Or Prevention-Focused? Here’s Why It Matters To Leaders”
The following is a guest piece by Megan Totka.
Great leadership is a necessity for any business that is striving for great success, especially during trying times. Without leadership that is effective, it’s nearly impossible for businesses to grow and expand, as is necessary in an ever-changing market.
While large corporations may be able to survive for short periods of time without great leadership in place, the opposite is often true for small businesses. Small businesses are often comprised of just a few employees, and could potentially fall apart if their leadership structure is in jeopardy.
So why exactly is it that great leadership is a must for small businesses? Here are a few reasons:
There’s been a lot discussion lately on the merits of telecommuting, in terms of fostering teamwork and innovation among disparate employees in an organization. While there’s certainly been a number of valid points made on both sides of this issue, one fundamental problem with this on-going discussion is the focus on how we work without any evaluation of how these strategies address the issue of why we work.
By now, all of us are familiar with the numerous studies that have unequivocally demonstrated that the ability to motivate employees through salary or other financial incentives has a very short shelf-life and is especially difficult to maintain when obstacles or challenges are placed in our way.
These studies have also shown that the most effective way to sustain our motivation and drive over the long run is being able to connect what we do with an internalized understanding and appreciation of the purpose behind why we do it; of why it matters both to ourselves, and to the organization and community we serve.
This is exactly the approach we see in many of today’s thriving organizations which have a clear connection between their collective efforts and the purpose behind their organization. These purpose-driven organizations don’t care about what their competition is doing because they don’t need to rely on others to define the value of what they do. That definition has already been created internally and collectively.
Our purpose tells us why what we do is so important that only we could do it, if not also why we have to do it. In the pursuit of profits and market share, it’s easy for an organization to Click here to continue reading »”What Organizations Really Need To Succeed And Thrive”
With only a few days left to this year, it’s natural that many of us are now breathing a sigh of relief that we’ve seen through the completion of another year at work. And if you’re one of the fortunate ones in today’s tough business climate, you’re probably also feeling that sense of relief that comes from achieving the goals we set out for ourselves, our team and our organization 11 months ago.
While many of us use the last week of December to rest and recuperate, it’s important that we not overlook the opportunity this time presents for reflection and review.
Indeed, whether this year was full of successes or losses, there is much that we can gain from the exercise of assessing not just what went right/wrong and why, but whether our efforts, culture, and beliefs remain aligned with our organization’s shared purpose.
To help with this process, I’d like to provide you with a series of questions to help you assess what lessons and insights you’ve learned over the past 12 months as you guided your organization towards your shared goals. For those who’d like to examine some of the questions in further detail, I’m also providing a link to a piece I wrote this year that reveals something about each question and what you can do to help your employees to achieve their shared goals. Click here to continue reading »”What Have You Learned Going Forward?”