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6 Ways to Inspire Passion In Unmotivated Employees

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6 Ways to Inspire Passion In Unmotivated Employees

Dealing with unmotivated employees can send even the sharpest manager or business owner into a fit of frustration.

In fact, if they’re not careful, it can even lead managers down the road toward wrongfully stereotyping entire groups or generations. For instance, the millennials have gotten a bad rap as being apathetic. But this type of stereotyping and generalization is dangerous for any boss, leader, or manager.

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The truth is, apathy or any other emotion is an individual issue and not a generational one – which means that leaders must recognize the signs that an employee is becoming unmotivated, and help to inspire them before the problem gets worse.

Focus On The Person, Not The Group

As long as you are not actually dealing with a group problem, it’s best to avoid assigning the blame to anyone except the one employee who is unmotivated.

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When you focus on the unmotivated employee as soon as you notice the issue, you have a better chance of quickly solving the problem. Most unmotivated individuals are dealing with other emotional matters that are stealing their motivation. The trick is to connect with them to help redirect their emotions in the right direction. Motivation will definitely follow the emotions when they are guided correctly.

One of the main tricks is to ignite their passion for their work. If you find their passion, their motivation will follow.

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In order to make this process as simple as possible, I have put together six ways to inspire passion in unmotivated employees. Try them out – I would love to hear how they worked.

6 Ways To Inspire Passion In Employees

  1. Care about the person, not their productivity. Forget about your employee’s employment status for a short while. Connect with them on a personal basis to discover if there is something deeper causing their lack of motivation. Ask questions, and listen carefully to their responses. If you can connect with someone on a personal level, you might find the secret sauce to unleashing passion.
  2. Redirect praise. There are hundreds of reasons to praise employees every day. If you are able to find a reason to redirect praise given to you as the boss toward your employee – giving them their share of the credit – do so. But be genuine in your praise, so that it has merit. If you are able to give them a sense of pride, you could help ignite the passion you are looking for.
  3. Guide toward desired results. You cannot beat passion out of people. Instead, guide them down the path toward the desirable employee you are looking for. Cast your vision personally, reinforce your values practically, and praise them toward the end goal. These actions will direct your apathetic employee toward your desired outcome.
  4. Invest in their potential. Remember why you hired your employee. During the interview and on-boarding processes, you saw their potential. But as with all relationships, the “honeymoon” stage will cool. Try to keep it alive by keeping your eyes focused on your employee’s future. Sometimes when employees lack motivation, it has more to do with the leader than it does the employee. Do you believe in their potential? If you do, invest in that potential and watch the passion rise.
  5. Expose any passion. Every person has passion. Whether or not the passion looks like yours is irrelevant. You simply need to find a person’s passion, and then understand it. What does it look like? How does it manifest in the employee’s daily life? Now expose that passion and redirect it where it needs to live in the workplace.
  6. Flame the fire of belief. Employees can fall into the trap of no longer believing in themselves, their abilities, or their future. As the leader, you must stoke the fire of belief in your employees. As you flame the fire of belief in your whole team, you will see the team ignite in belief, passion, motivation, and production. And once in place, work to guard that sense of self-belief by fueling the fire.

It Starts with the Leader

Every leader will face the problem of unmotivated individuals.

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But as their leader, you have a responsibility to not let their motivation die, by inspiring passion that drives their motivation. Passion has a shelf life, so keep the passion burning and watch the production of your employees blow you away.

Featured photo credit: Hans/Pixabay via pixabay.com

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More by this author

Jared Buckley

Millennial Skills Coach - Talent Development Consultant

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Last Updated on October 21, 2021

How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

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How to Create Your Own Ritual to Conquer Time Wasters and Laziness

Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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Program Your Own Algorithms

Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

How to Form a Ritual

I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

  1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
  2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
  3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
  4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

Ways to Use a Ritual

Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

1. Waking Up

Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

2. Web Usage

How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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3. Reading

How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

4. Friendliness

Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

5. Working

One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

6. Going to the gym

If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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7. Exercise

Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

8. Sleeping

Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

8. Weekly Reviews

The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

Final Thoughts

We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

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More Tips to Conquer Time Wasters and Procrastination

 

Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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