... is a quick tip ezine for Managers who believe in "Results Derived from Within"
Written by: Vickie Bevenour, a Professional Certified Coach, PCC
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2013: Human Motivation Part Two
In my April newsletter we discussed part of the keynote speech that Daniel Pink gave in Raleigh NC in March 2013. This month I would like to continue the discussion of human motivation. Daniel Pink suggests that the three motivational factors are: Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose. We discussed Autonomy in April, this issue will focus on Mastery and next month we will address Purpose.
Mastery is defined as getting better at things or to see progress. He asked the question "How many of us have a desire to get better at stuff? He went on to suggest that it seems natural to all of us to play our instruments to improve if we are musicians, practice our favorite sport or seek to better time on our next run. According to Pink, everyone who makes progress towards a goal tends to feel fully engaged, motivated and happy.
There are three rules that Pink uses to explain the Mastery factor of human motivation.
The First Rule of Mastery: Mindset
One must believe that their abilities are not finite but that one has the ability to improve almost infinitely. This internal belief that one can always improve is a motivating factor to continuous improvement. It makes me think of the story of
The Little Engine That Could. When having to do something hard, the little engine continuously told himself "I think I can, I think I can" until the task was done. It also makes me think of children who tell their parents that they cannot accomplish a task without ever having tried it. How does that translate into the workplace? Motivating employees by believing in them and in their abilities is the first step to a highly motivated team.
The Second Rule of Mastery: Practice
The second rule of mastery is that reaching a goal takes hard work, grit and deliberate practice. Any of us who have ever tried to do something new; whether learning a golf swing, holding a pose in Yoga leading a project to successful completion, or making a "sale" (whether internal or external to the organization); every new thing that we do requires practice, perseverance in the face of failure and determination that we will eventually succeed. It reminds me of so many of those old adages: "If at first you don't succeed, try try again" or "You can do anything if you put your mind to it" or "If you think you can, or you think you can't, you are probably right". I would ask you to think about your favorite "Mastery saying". Then I would suggest that in your role as a Manager, you can adopt that "saying" as your team's motto or brand. Or for an individual, that "saying", which is based in your beliefs about yourself could become part of your personal brand.
The Third Rule of Mastery: Illusiveness
The third rule of mastery is that TRUE mastery is impossible to realize, which makes it both alluring and frustrating. We all strive to master an accomplishment and yet do we ever get to that TRUE master level? Pink's research suggests that we are all driven towards progress. I would request that you ask yourself: "What is it that drives you personally towards mastering something?" Each of us has motivational drivers and uncovering yours could be your personal key to success. If you become aware of what this motivational factor is for you, imagine what you could accomplish! As a team lead, if you can tap into the specific motivational factors that drive your team towards mastery and ensure that they always have some of these "secret ingredients" in their work life; imagine what your team could accomplish!
Given this previous discussion, the question then becomes: how does one keep track of progress? While there are certainly the "normal" success metrics, project milestones and win/loss sales, the more important aspect is tracking personal progress. Managing and measuring progress - and using an appropriate tool to track that progress is essential. A daily log/diary could help with this tracking option.
Once progress is tracked, this also brings up the subject of feedback. Did I hear a groan from all of the Mangers out there? I recently met a human resource executive who is thinking of doing away with annual performance reviews. WOW that is a bit of a novel idea! They know that they still need to have some progress metrics and they are trying on the idea of monthly meeting where the individuals tell their top three success stories of the month. While monthly success story meetings might surprise some of you, I believe that it might just work. I have mentioned in other newsletters the concept of telling success stories in the form of CARs: Challenge, Action, Result. While a "typical" performance review seems to make us report status and activities, I believe that the CAR format truly forces us to look beyond the specific actions to the bigger picture of the RESULT for the team, project or organization.
My wish for you is that you become aware of your personal drive for Mastery and make a commitment to yourself to write up three success stories each month. At the end of the year, imagine the mastery that you will feel with this personal reporting structure. Congratulations, by embracing the concept of driving Mastery, you would be
deriving results from within.
*To review any of these past newsletters, please visit the Newsletter section of www.CoachVickie.com
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