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How To Motivate Your Employees’ Productivity

How To Motivate Your Employees’ Productivity
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In the office, your workers follow your lead. That’s why motivating them to work, to better themselves (for MORE than just a paycheck) is important.

Great leaders do just that. Motivating someone is more than just pushing them – here are 10 tips on how to do just that.

1. LOVE What You Love

When I was crashing a wedding a few years ago, one of the bridesmaids’ sisters complimented my energy for dancing. “I’ve never seen someone so enthusiastic at these things,” she said.

The obsessive love you feel for what you’re doing, when it transcends the mundane reason of being only for the paycheck… Is more apparent than you realise. We pick up on energies and vibes, steering towards people who seem to be operating on a different level.

Be that person people gravitate towards to: they’ll resonate with you, and follow your lead. Lead by example.

2. Take Some Time Off

Break and break often. Human beings are not wired to shoot through the atmosphere at 500 mph, for hours on end. We just can’t work efficiently like that.

I’ll admit, there have been days where I just did not want to take a break – I was in that sweet, blissful zone. Total self-harmony. The only other time I was that excited was my younger years’ experiments with pharmaceutical drugs. But this was work, work I loved, and looked forward to doing the entire day.

You know what happened at the end of the work day?

You know what happened, don’t you. Yeah you do.

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I went home, undressed, and face-planted the living room sofa. And stayed there for a grizzly 14 hours.

If I’m lyin’, I’m dyin’.

3. Keep Home at Home

You’re running a business. You have deadlines to meet. If you see someone who’s carrying three emotional briefcases, politely kick them out of your workplace. This isn’t a time for soap, drama, or soap dramas. Everybody today is here to make money (and have a smooth-as-sails fun time doing it).

It’s called “work” for a reason – try to keep that in people’s minds as they go about their day. Work isn’t a platform for airing personal problems.

Be sure to round up the troops and tell them that.

4. Motivate Growth

Take a mental note of quirks and interests your workers have. As a leader, these people go to you for guidance. How many times has a mentor, friend, or leader of yours been influential in your life’s decisions?

Be that influence by helping your workers’ special “areas.” Did you learn that Sally is a writer in her off-time? Buy her “The Elements Of Style” by William Strunk, Jr. Did the grapevine tell you that Joe has an obsession with dolphins? Take Joe out for lunch to an aquarium – dolphins galore! (Just be sure to do the equivalent for every worker.)

Figure out that special quality that makes people who they are… And then help them develop that quality, in the workplace.

My art teacher in elementary did that – and she was by far the greatest teacher there. Many of my classmates I kept in touch with feel the same way I do, as well.

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Why? Because she helped us form that special part of ourselves the other teachers sort of had to ignore, for the sake of getting through the curriculum.

5. Believe In Yourself

You’re successful in all that you do – and success comes easily to you. You have complete composure every single time of the day – you accept challenges and arguments in good spirits and calmly.

How you think about yourself makes up a large part of how you’ll treat workers. Whether you think you can or can’t, you’re right.

Do you remember the blockbuster hit Wolf On Wall Street? There was NOBODY like seeing confident-as-all-get-out Jordan Belfort walking into the wolf’s den, preparing to land another knock-out speech.

He was able to do that because he believed in himself – his self-belief made him millions of dollars, after all.

6. Actually Talk With People

When things go right and you spot someone doing a bang-on performance, acknowledge that! Don’t you appreciate being thanked for doing something right? Your workers need your encouragement and energy.

And when things go wrong? Talk about them, as well. There is nothing more counter-productive and time wasting than bickering, complaining, and starting arguments about a bad worker.

The longer air remains foggy and “damp”, the more stress builds steam. When stress builds steam, tension gets high and strong. People start suffering. Work

7. Inspire Happiness

Outside of the Grinch and that one old bag who always has something up his/her craw… Most people can’t resist a smile or friendly gesture.

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Inspiring happiness boosts morale and gives people an incentive to get in their seats and work. When I worked the gruesome 9-5, in a dinky cubicle, the boss man wouldn’t allow us to personalise our cubicles. He said he couldn’t afford us being distracted.

Please, for the sake of your workers’ humanity, let them express who they are with the little space they can afford to.

Slowing down has also shown to maximise productivity. Instead of making everybody a scatter-brained, nerves-on-edge breakdown waiting to happen… Encourage everyone to tackle one project at a time.

One practical thing you can do right now is to hire a happiness trainer. Yes, that’s a thing. Really.

8. Build Camaraderie

Years ago when I worked briefly as a first assistant editor on a student film, we quickly realised this: unless we meshed on a deeper level, the film wouldn’t make the cut for a festival.

Working together, even offering advice about certain shots and music choices and giving our two cents about each other’s specialty… Helped us join together and bond more.

In life, love and business, having a group of people by your side while you wade through the swamps and sail aboard rollercoasters makes those journeys worthwhile.

9. Be Gracious

Here’s the real truth: No matter how much your company hates and berates each other (often behind each others’ backs… It’s your job to simmer the heat and turn flames into sizzle. The workplace is a warzone – like high school on a much larger scale.

Your team works with each other and, there’s a giant chance a few people feel underappreciated, underfed and underpaid.

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One way of showing how much you ADMIRE having them in your employ… Is by throwing a potluck party for lunch. (This is a very popular decision, with good reason.)

10. Stay In Shape

A lot of self-made millionaires exercise.

So, all those annoying health-freaks pestering you to move more, eat healthier, and talk so much you want to do violent things to them?

They’re on to something the rich have known.

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, being a monumental leader isn’t about controlling people. It isn’t about how much profit you make the company.

Being a memorable, valuable leader requires human involvement. Bring the humanity of your workers to life, and you’ll see a giant increase in success – both in life, love and business.

Featured photo credit: pixabay.com via pixabay.com

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Last Updated on July 21, 2021

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)

The Importance of Reminders (And How to Make a Reminder Work)
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No matter how well you set up your todo list and calendar, you aren’t going to get things done unless you have a reliable way of reminding yourself to actually do them.

Anyone who’s spent an hour writing up the perfect grocery list only to realize at the store that they forgot to bring the list understands the importance of reminders.

Reminders of some sort or another are what turn a collection of paper goods or web services into what David Allen calls a “trusted system.”[1]

A lot of people resist getting better organized. No matter what kind of chaotic mess, their lives are on a day-to-day basis because they know themselves well enough to know that there’s after all that work they’ll probably forget to take their lists with them when it matters most.

Fortunately, there are ways to make sure we remember to check our lists — and to remember to do the things we need to do, whether they’re on a list or not.

In most cases, we need a lot of pushing at first, for example by making a reminder, but eventually we build up enough momentum that doing what needs doing becomes a habit — not an exception.

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From Creating Reminders to Building Habits

A habit is any act we engage in automatically without thinking about it.

For example, when you brush your teeth, you don’t have to think about every single step from start to finish; once you stagger up to the sink, habit takes over (and, really, habit got you to the sink in the first place) and you find yourself putting toothpaste on your toothbrush, putting the toothbrush in your mouth (and never your ear!), spitting, rinsing, and so on without any conscious effort at all.

This is a good thing because if you’re anything like me, you’re not even capable of conscious thought when you’re brushing your teeth.

The good news is you already have a whole set of productivity habits you’ve built up over the course of your life. The bad news is, a lot of them aren’t very good habits.

That quick game Frogger to “loosen you up” before you get working, that always ends up being 6 hours of Frogger –– that’s a habit. And as you know, habits like that can be hard to break — which is one of the reasons why habits are so important in the first place.

Once you’ve replaced an unproductive habit with a more productive one, the new habit will be just as hard to break as the old one was. Getting there, though, can be a chore!

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The old saw about anything you do for 21 days becoming a habit has been pretty much discredited, but there is a kernel of truth there — anything you do long enough becomes an ingrained behavior, a habit. Some people pick up habits quickly, others over a longer time span, but eventually, the behaviors become automatic.

Building productive habits, then, is a matter of repeating a desired behavior over a long enough period of time that you start doing it without thinking.

But how do you remember to do that? And what about the things that don’t need to be habits — the one-off events, like taking your paycheck stubs to your mortgage banker or making a particular phone call?

The trick to reminding yourself often enough for something to become a habit, or just that one time that you need to do something, is to interrupt yourself in some way in a way that triggers the desired behavior.

The Wonderful Thing About Triggers — Reminders

A trigger is anything that you put “in your way” to remind you to do something. The best triggers are related in some way to the behavior you want to produce.

For instance, if you want to remember to take something to work that you wouldn’t normally take, you might place it in front of the door so you have to pick it up to get out of your house.

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But anything that catches your attention and reminds you to do something can be a trigger. An alarm clock or kitchen timer is a perfect example — when the bell rings, you know to wake up or take the quiche out of the oven. (Hopefully you remember which trigger goes with which behavior!)

If you want to instill a habit, the thing to do is to place a trigger in your path to remind you to do whatever it is you’re trying to make into a habit — and keep it there until you realize that you’ve already done the thing it’s supposed to remind you of.

For instance, a post-it saying “count your calories” placed on the refrigerator door (or maybe on your favorite sugary snack itself)  can help you remember that you’re supposed to be cutting back — until one day you realize that you don’t need to be reminded anymore.

These triggers all require a lot of forethought, though — you have to remember that you need to remember something in the first place.

For a lot of tasks, the best reminder is one that’s completely automated — you set it up and then forget about it, trusting the trigger to pop up when you need it.

How to Make a Reminder Works for You

Computers and ubiquity of mobile Internet-connected devices make it possible to set up automatic triggers for just about anything.

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Desktop software like Outlook will pop up reminders on your desktop screen, and most online services go an extra step and send reminders via email or SMS text message — just the thing to keep you on track. Sandy, for example, just does automatic reminders.

Automated reminders can help you build habits — but it can also help you remember things that are too important to be trusted even to habit. Diabetics who need to take their insulin, HIV patients whose medication must be taken at an exact time in a precise order, phone calls that have to be made exactly on time, and other crucial events require triggers even when the habit is already in place.

My advice is to set reminders for just about everything — have them sent to your mobile phone in some way (either through a built-in calendar or an online service that sends updates) so you never have to think about it — and never have to worry about forgetting.

Your weekly review is a good time to enter new reminders for the coming weeks or months. I simply don’t want to think about what I’m supposed to be doing; I want to be reminded so I can think just about actually doing it.

I tend to use my calendar for reminders, mostly, though I do like Sandy quite a bit.

More on Building Habits

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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Reference

[1] Getting Things Done: Trusted System

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