To inspire is to be “the cause” of something. The Archaic meaning of inspire is “to breathe life into”, and without inspiration, motivation loses some of its “mojo.”
Inspiration is lasting.. motivation is fading.. Zig Ziglar once said; “people often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing… that’s why we recommend it daily.”
If we’re to keep our teams motivated, we have to inspire them on an almost daily basis. What are your daily inspiration points?
Motivation vs inspiration
It’s a long running debate.. Motivation vs Inspiration.. motivation comes from within, it drives discipline.. which at times can save your job, company or life. As leaders, all we can do is to hope to inspire someone, in turn fueling their motivation to action.
What makes you “tick”?
Ever hear that term? That’s exactly when someone is trying to figure out what it’s going to take in order to motivate someone else to do something. Threats, tricks & pressure.. external pain-points bring about temporary change. Inspiration driven motivation brings about transformational change because it addresses internal pain-points.
It’s been proven time & time again that people will either run away-from pain & fear.. or toward “the light”. That is an intrinsic driver behind change. People will also do something, including changing their behavior, if only it can be demonstrated that doing so is in their own best interests as defined by their own core values. How are you tapping into your teams’ core values? How are you linking their passions to your success? Find a way for an individual to flourish and feed their self-esteem, and you will have found the holy grail of how to inspire increased productivity.
One person is on the journey of believing again, whilst another is on the journey of self-discovery. It is rare to find any two people on the same path through life. However, many people are indeed on similar journeys. This is to say that if you’re wanting to address a team of individuals, you won’t require multiple distinct solutions for each, but rather discover what is common amongst their individual journeys. Why did they join your company? Even if it was just for money.. what did they intend to do with that money? Where is it that they are headed in life? What does success look like? How can your company help them realize that success?
You will inspire by identifying that someone is about to embark on a journey of self-discovery, and you can exchange valuable lessons through day-to-day work experiences. You will inspire through being the conduit of change that will accelerate that journey.. and or provide further clarity. These is not hocus-pocus magic tricks.. these facts are backed by scientific data & the phycological study behind Maslow’s Hierarchy of Human Needs.
Individual Experiences & Success
I have found through one-on-one dialogue that you can identify one-to-many solutions. Inspire one person to action.. and watch a string of people fall into line behind them. Find ways to give greater meaning to people’s day-to-day activities, linking these to the success of your department, organization or company.. and people will be motivated to go out of their way to guarantee results.
Recently I engaged a team that was totally dejected! It was typical to find them packing up 15 minutes or more before the end of a work-day. They didn’t communicate outside of small tight circles of trust, and even then.. the topic was typically centered around their distrust, dislike & distain for management and the organization.
With four weeks of listening and acting to address ineffective communication, including the installation of a large screen reflecting their daily contribution toward the company’s over-all results & success metrics.. the very same team was now staying on 1-2 hours more (without additional compensation) to address critical issues concerning their area of expertise. They had identified the pride in their work that they were missing.. they had identified varying sources of how what they did mattered!