Everyone’s needs are highly subjective. That fact does little to help you devise a one-and-done strategy for inspiring your team to achieve better results, but that’s okay.
If you’re a leader who prioritizes success and wants to achieve the best results for you, your team, and your organization, then you’re willing to employ several strategies to drive inspiration. As you experiment with them, you’ll need to test and measure the outcomes of each mechanism.
The results will help you unearth what works. And since there is no one-and-done strategy, you’ll continue the cycle of employing and experimenting. In doing so, you’re building a robust and dynamic list of ideas on how to inspire your team to achieve better results, and that’s the kind of leadership that team members want to work for.
Here are some tips on how to inspire your team to do well and achieve better results.
1. Start With “Why?”
Learning how to inspire your team to achieve better results starts with knowing their “why?” Certainly, every leader on this planet is familiar with Simon Sinek’s book, “Start With Why?” so you, too, understand the value of getting clear on what motivates your team.
Begin your plan with exploration meetings. Gather the group together and using open-ended questions, brainstorming sessions, or team-building activities, drive an outcome list of motivational and engagement strategies. You should also meet with your team members individually because they may not feel comfortable sharing their true motivations with their colleagues.
2. Brainstorm With Experts
You don’t need to have all the answers to be an effective leader. If you think you do, that’s a huge red flag. Put ego aside and focus on the results you want to achieve—how to inspire your team to achieve better results.
One of the greatest gifts of leading a team and being part of a team is that you are surrounded by experts. Every one of the people that you work with is an expert. So, expand your reach and meet with other employees and leaders within your organization to inquire what works for them.
Set time with them, and ask what inspires them and their teams to achieve better results. Be sure to not only inquire about what motivates them but also how you might employ this motivation.
3. Enlist Ongoing Support
Some of the best strategies come from supportive resources you’re already using to improve your and your team’s results. Giving them access to a coach, helping them connect with a mentor, and providing a regular platform for exchanging ideas and best practices increase their productivity and outcomes.
Now, how can these supportive resources help inspire your team to get better results? Don’t overthink it. You want results. They want results. Brainstorming with enlisted resources will not only give you new ideas but also provide support in heightening your efforts.
The accountability alone motivates you and your team toward desired outcomes. The question is, how do you enlist these ongoing support resources to move the needle further?
4. Consult Your Guides
The Universe is robust with guides to help you overcome challenges and grow and learn new things, including how to inspire your team to achieve better results. Start with your mentor, network, and your circle of influence. Ask about their own experiences around inspiration.
What gets them jazzed about their job? What fires up their team? What strategies have they found exceptional for motivation?
But don’t limit your research to those you know. Reach out and exchange best practices with people in your network and those whom you are connected to on LinkedIn. Also, dig into your professional associations and groups for experts who are willing to share their intel.
There may also be group chats and breakout sessions at conferences where you can brainstorm with a group of peers from other organizations. Of course, books, articles, courses, Ted Talks, seminars, and conferences are all fonts of information.
You should be regularly learning and developing yourself, now that you have one strategy that you really need to hone.
5. Set Some Goals
Call it your inspiration, motivation, or results-driver goal plan. Whatever you label it, it’s your blueprint on how to inspire your team to achieve better results.
Set it up as part of your quarterly goals, first to design a plan that you’ll employ but also to nail this process and become your own subject matter expert. It’s a win-win. You’ll not only learn what works and get great outcomes, but you can weave it into your own personal development plan as well.
It’s another win-win as well. You’ll not only learn strategies you can employ and experiment with, but you will also be working on your own professional development plan. To set this as a goal for yourself as well as your team and establish metrics for each quarter.
6. Develop a Plan
Let’s go back to how to inspire your team and achieve better results. You have done your due diligence, spoken with your team, set up a brainstorming session to gather action steps, and have pulled into your research expert wisdom. Now, it’s time to create a plan.
If one of the strategies is a clear winner, start with that and bring in a few more. If it’s too challenging to conduct a multipronged approach, take it one strategy at a time. Map out the strategies you plan to employ, the reason you’re experimenting with them—this is based on your questions and research—and your timeline for implementation and measurement.
7. Experiment and Recalibrate
Before you put your plan into action, measure the current outputs of your team. Establish a baseline to see if the strategies you employ have any impact.
For your present assessment, do a deep dive into how they are currently doing. Don’t forget to measure the qualifiable outcomes as well as the quantifiable ones. You might find this a great opportunity to enlist an outside vendor for support. Not only do they have the appropriate assessments, they can expertly handle the measurement and may also have inspiration strategies for you to try.
8. Take a Temperature
I like the military expression “boots on the ground.” The true perspective of what is happening comes from people who are part of the journey. While you’re an integral team member in this plan to inspire your team to achieve better results, you need to take the temperature of your team members. That’s where the wisdom lies.
Don’t just rely on formal measurements. Instead, set regular check-ins, offer an anonymous feedback survey, and spend time with them to get a feel for their energy. Certainly, results will vary due to what is happening with your team members and within the organization, so don’t dismiss them.
Based on what you’re discovering, eliminate strategies that aren’t working or change them up so they work better the next time.
9. Compound on Inspiration
If you sense inspiration happening, find the source and compound it. maybe you decide on regularly bringing in guest speakers to inspire your team and get better results.
While the speaker is presenting, you can feel the energy lift in the room and your team is excited about what they are learning and the possibilities for their future work. They are also grateful for the morning break in their routine and the lavish breakfast that you’d provided. But two days after the program, you noticed their motivation waning.
Don’t ignore the warning signs. Talk to them about what you could do collectively to keep the inspiration alive.
What strategies would they suggest for the routine deployment of what they experienced that morning that could continually serve as a motivation ignitor? Add these ideas to your plan and compound them.
This might include identifying a team member as the leader for future speaker series to keep the momentum going. Empowering team members to use their strengths and gifts in new ways and then acknowledging their efforts is not only critical in helping you develop and employ a motivation plan but is also a critical strategy for inspiring your team to achieve better results.
10. Rinse and Repeat
Once you have a few strategies that work, clean them up and continually employ them. But while this seems easy enough, keep in mind, if you don’t regularly tweak and enhance it, your efforts will become obsolete over time. That’s why it’s important to always continue research and exploration into best practices.
Yes, there will be a few tried and true approaches that you routinely get great results from and should never abandon, but there are new ones being developed each day. At this point, it’s time to start back at “why?” and regularly revisit each step and refine your inspiration plan.
You’ve come full circle back to the fact that there is no one magic bullet on how to inspire your team and achieve better results. It’s a compilation of many strategies that will get you there. And while it takes time and work, it’s the impetus for what you want to achieve as a leader.
If you don’t prioritize this, odds are you won’t last long at your organization. This is your primer for how to make an impact and succeed in driving outcomes.
Of course, no one knows your group better than you. So, trust your gut and lead with confidence in designing, deploying, and directing your plan to inspire your team.
Featured photo credit: Andreea Avramescu via unsplash.com