Archive for the ‘ Passion ’ Category
Looking past the viral-oriented nature of this video, the main concept presented is critical for leadership. Thoughts, when attached to emotions other than sadness, generally have higher “infection” rates.
Thus, it is important to generate more emotion (hopefully positive and not anger-inducing) around messages that you want your direct reports to remember or share. It seems idea is lost at times in the data-driven world of today, where it’s more important to get across the numbers and metrics than it is to tell a story.
So communicate with feeling and generate positive emotions in your direct reports. Make the topic relevant to them. They will be more receptive to your messages and will remember them better. Let’s infect the world with the good germs to promote healthy thoughts.
Just don’t anger them… or you may end up on the wrong side of a thought germ!
What is “Passion”? The dictionary says: “a strong and barely controllable emotion”; “a state or outburst of strong emotion”; and “an intense desire or enthusiasm for something”. Passion is the positive emotional state of mind – which drives a willingness to apply discretionary effort; long-term commitment; peak performance; and satisfaction.
The Passionate Leader
Leaders need to love what they do; otherwise, where are they leading their employees? Leaders who display passion can engage the hearts and mind of employees, foster their commitment and determination, and empower their employees to meet meaningful goals.
Passionate leaders create an environment that energizes others; mixing passion with employee involvement, and transparency. Communicating passion every day, and in different ways – a face-to-face engagement, an exciting meeting, or a quick e-mail – allows the leaders’ enthusiasm to shine. If an employee feels trusted and involved, they can share their leaders’ passions and develop their dedication to their organizations.
Leaders with a passion have the power to instill a sense of meaning – they can provide a “bigger picture”, making the work their employees do worthwhile. Passion makes work about more than just a paycheck. People who feel that their work is valued feel empowered to make meaningful changes for their customers.
The Passionate Employee
Employee engagement and employee passion are essential for productivity, profitability, and customer loyalty. An engaged, motivated, and empowered workforce is far more likely to work at optimal levels, and have a higher performance.
In 2006, The Ken Blanchard Companies embarked on a new study to explore the concept of Employee Passion more fully concluding that, for employees to be passionate about their work, they need to have meaningful work – which means they should understand how their work adds value to the organization and creates positive results. They need an organizational culture that encourages collaboration, sharing, interdependence, and team spirit. The work environment needs to be fair – benefits, resources, and workloads are fair and balanced. They should be given the autonomy to choose how tasks are completed; have the information and authority needed to make authoritative decisions – and know the boundaries of this; and be trusted to do their job without micro-management.
Employee passion is reinforced with recognition – which can be verbal, written, or monetary; praise or promotions – for their accomplishments, and the opportunity for growth, where employees are supported in future career planning. Employees also need to feel connected with their leader and their colleagues, which requires honesty and integrity at all levels; and making an effort to build rapport.
Train Your Passion
By asking yourself what drives you to work hard; commit; achieve; and what makes you happy, you can grow your own enthusiasm for your work. Ask yourself:
Passionate leaders spend time with their employees – learning about employee needs and desires, how to communicate with them, and what makes work meaningful to them. Employees with a passionate leader – where this passion is communicated and shared – are more enthusiastic and engaged. Organizations must provide meaningful work, autonomy, and opportunities for growth, encourage collaboration and recognition, and address the concept of fairness in order to maximize Employee Passion. Passion, in turn, creates driven, enthusiastic, committed and hard working employees.
Employees with a positive attitude create success.
Find your passion, grow it, and share it!
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About the author: Jemma Garraghan is an EMEA Project Manager at the Ken Blanchard Companies. She can be reached at email@example.com
I was asked a question today: “What motivates you?”
I immediately thought about context: Motivations for work-related tasks? For my own personal goals? And then I thought about life in general. What motivates me to get up every day?
This is such a powerful question. The answer says so much about who you are as a person. Whether you are internally or externally motivated, and your reasoning for why you are motivated in that way can shed light on your values and morals. Even how you frame the answer conveys what you find most important in your life.
And yet, despite the wealth of information this simple question could provide, many leaders don’t ask this of themselves and of their direct reports. Leaders can uncover why they’ve become leaders and what strengths and weaknesses they possess. They can also discover how engaged their workforce is and how to better inspire their employees.
So go ask yourself and those around you, “What motivates you?”
Get good grades they say. Get a college degree they say. Your life will be much easier they say.
I’m not sure who this “they” is but if someone can find them, I have a few friends and millions of young Americans who I’m sure would like to have a conversation with them.
The “they” that most parents may have been referring to was the previous economy, because Uncle Sam’s pockets have been quite drained for some time. He’s no longer the rich uncle that lives outside of town—now he’s more the one that lives in the basement.
Nearly eight-in-ten (78%) of 25- to 34-year-olds say they don’t currently have enough money to lead the kind of life they want, and thirty-six percent of this nation’s young adults ages 18 to 31 were living in their parents’ homes in 2012, according to a Pew Research Center.
Also, large majorities (78%) say they’re satisfied with their living arrangements (living at home with mom and dad). So the stigma associated with living with parents is nowhere to be seen with this generation.
And according to the Journal of Marriage and Family, 79% of adults between 18-33 receive financial help, though there are varying reports about this data. I must admit that I fall in this age range and I used to receive some financial help from my parents while I was out of college. Since my cell phone and auto insurance were tied to the same bill, they never passed it along to me—thanks Mom and Dad!
If I had to guess, I would say the majority of the boomerang generation would like to spend the rest of their 20’s and 30’s chasing the American Dream as much as the previous generations. Stagnate wages, higher unemployment, and large student debt have been major obstacles to financial independence for the boomers. Although it has not been easy, much of the boomerang generation is optimistic about their future and financial progress. Many would suggest that they live life “entitled” but I believe many are hungry to begin their careers and add value to the organizations they serve.
Employee engagement is a hot topic these days. According to a Gallup poll estimate, disengaged employees cost the US between $450 – $550 billion each year in terms of lost productivity. Could you be contributing to that figured by not finding out what’s truly meaningful to your employees?
According to The Ken Blanchard Companies own research on the topic of Employee Work Passion, there are five job factors that can have a direct impact on retention: Autonomy, Workload Balance, Task Variety, Feedback, and Meaningful Work.
Over 800 individuals responded to a survey asking them to rank these factors by order of importance. While all five factors are important, Meaningful Work was most commonly ranked as being the #1 priority. In other words, respondents feel that employees need to know that the work they do has a direct positive impact on their organization, whether that impact is internal or external.
It makes sense, right? If I’m an employee who feels my job duties are really just “busy work” that aren’t contributing to my organization’s success, will I really be engaged in my work? If I don’t see my own work being important, how motivated will I be to go the extra mile?
Think about those fabulous people who work in IT. Lots of companies, regardless of what business they are actually in, rely on the systems and technology maintained by these individuals. While IT support may differ entirely from the type of work being done to maintain/grow a customer base, that doesn’t mean the work is any less important. If you have a frontline IT help desk representative who doesn’t see that their own contributions have a direct impact (i.e. employees from other departments could not complete their own work without the assistance of IT support), their quality of work may suffer.
A common trap leaders fall into is to assume that just because their organization is in the business of making positive impacts on customers and people, that their employees see it that way, as well. Leaders need to be proactive to ensure that their people also see the benefits of the work they complete.
ASK your employees how they feel about their work. Be sure to check this barometer on a regular basis. It’s easy for people to forget their importance in the grand scheme of the organization’s success. If your company has ever been through a series of changes, you can probably relate.
SHOW them the results. Ensure they know that they make a positive difference based on positive outcomes.
PRAISE them when praisings are due. If they did a good job, be sure to tell them! If you hear from another employee or customer that that they did a good job, pass that along to the employee!
How do you personally make sure your employees understand their contributions are meaningful? Leave your comments!