Entrepreneurship · Motivation

How do I motivate my team?

Orvi Das I am dreamer

April 5th, 2017

My team is very good at delivering though they have consistant fears of failure. They are student so they have fear that they can not do both work and study together. How do I motivate them that they can overcome such type of fear.

Michael Docherty Lifelong innovator, corporate exec, ex-VC and connector.

Last updated on August 28th, 2017

There's a natural tendency as leaders to believe it's our job to 'manage' and 'motivate' and actively bring out the best in our employees and team members. While leadership has an important role in all of this it's generally one of subtraction rather than addition.

Think about what you and others can do to NOT hold back or hinder your team's natural ability to think creatively and deliver great work. So ask yourself what can be removed from the picture that might be causing fear. As someone who has consulted with many leading corporate innovation teams, led 100+ organizations myself and as a startup founder... leadership behaviors matter much more than leadership words. Demonstrating firsthand your willingness to put yourself out there and take risks... and being the first to celebrate their 'failures' as brave learning experiments would go a long way. Here's a great talk by Astro Teller of Google X (Alphabet) where he talks about striving to kill good ideas to focus on the great ones. https://www.ted.com/talks/astro_teller_the_unexpected_benefit_of_celebrating_failure

Hope that helps and best of luck in your efforts!

shivanshu patel Senior Fullstack PHP developer

April 5th, 2017

My suggestion is share statatics with the team show them where is thier effort is going. I would say increase transperancy. Show then short tearm goal instead of showing long term or big picture. Also try to help them with timing if they are student.

Steve Owens

April 5th, 2017

Rarely have I seen students work out in a startup - often they cause more issues than they solve, as they tend to do the wrong thing really well.


You build a great company by hiring a great team - not a bunch of amateurs (no offense to students, we were all one at one time).


I have never read any book were some successful person claimed the secret to success was to hire rookies. There are several that state to opposite - find the best people in the world.


You do not need to motivate good people - they motivate themselves - that is why they are good . They become great when a leader helps them become a FUNCTIONAL team. Being a "functional team" has little to do with motivation


Samuel Lynd CEO/Administrator - Hospital and Health System

April 5th, 2017

There are a lot of great answers to this question - it is a common one in the startup world, or any other team-based environment, for that matter.


I try to keep things simple with a note on my desk that numbers very simply the things I need to keep in mind to continue to be a leader of an inspired, active, and engaged group. Each of these items warrant further discussion, but having just the numbered lists inspires me to think about how I can achieve each of these in that particular moment in time for a team and sometimes, for a specific team member that may be struggling.


1. Listen

2. Communicate

3. Laugh/ Love

4. Example

5. Empower

6. Invest

Ashwin Kumaar Founder and CEO @Winfantrace

August 29th, 2017

There are many answers to this question . But from my personal experience i can tell you that the way I overcame this issue was by understanding them better spending more time interacting . As students i involved them into activities and sports and that they liked , and their understanding on how to take on challenges or even the fear of leading was dealt with .

This is something I suggest you to do . This will help you create a better environment and the students will feel more comfortable to explore and open up . Unleashing their potential is very Important . So make sure you do it at the right time since they are innovative and love to explore at that age when they feel secure and comfortable at their work place .

Paul Garcia President at TABLE

August 29th, 2017

Your team does not lack motivation. They lack confidence. Try "the 5 why's" when you examine tough questions like this. It helps you get to the root of the issue instead of the surface issue. In this case before you start asking why, you may first benefit from determining who they are afraid of disappointing. Then ask why they're afraid of disappointing that person. Then ask why they feel that disappointment is the likely response to their fear. Then ask them why they think disappointment is the likely response. Then ask them why what they were doing lead to that response. Then ask them why they did what they were doing that lead to that response. Eventually you dig deep enough to find out the root of the issue and not just the reaction. Once you find the root issue, you can assign tasks to compensate for the underlying problem, and you must also share the findings as well as solutions with everyone. When you are more open about things, trust and confidence is easier to build.


Douglas Hall https://www.linkedin.com/in/douglasthall

April 5th, 2017

Hi Orvi,

I highly recommend picking up a copy of Dan Pink's "Drive." It will help you find ways to inspire your team through purpose, mastery and autonomy. I would also recommend you inject a core value of productivity over perfection into your culture. Their fear to fail is likely a fear to disappoint (you). If they understand that quality work delivered expediently is valued over flawless product that is slow to market, they will strive to produce faster. But be careful not to scold them for mistakes (made a first time) as these are opportunities to learn, adapt and improve. Best of luck.

-D


MZ Looking for a co-founder to join me

August 29th, 2017

"Be a great inspiring leader!" is probably what you have heard, but in today's world, it has lost the steam. Which one of the following statements will get you more pumped up?


1. Work hard for me so that I can make more money!

2. Work hard for yourself, so that you can get paid more!


Or course money isn't a silver bullet, what I found works best is to give people responsibilities, if they feel they are responsible for something they will do a better job, because they don't want to be blamed. Unlike entrepreneurs we are so used to blames we don't even feel it anymore.