How Do You Motivate and Lead a Team to Work Their Hardest?

On Quora, someone asked:

How do you motivate and lead a team to work their hardest, when there isn’t the same incentives (monetary, fame, etc) as a regular job?

In areas like a university student club or volunteer service.

This was my response:

I would recommend Ken Blanchard’s book Gung Ho!

In his book, he goes over the three phases of creating a motivated team.

The spirit of the squirrel.

The way of the beaver.

The gift of the goose.

The spirit of the squirrel is pretty much an outline on how each person’s job is essential for the overall success of the group. It’s a direct tie in of how each individual is an essential part of the “bigger vision”. By utilizing the ability the maximize the importance of each individual’s job in the bigger picture, you are able to instill a sense of self esteem and personal responsibility into each person who is working with you.

The way of the beaver outlines teamwork and goal setting. You are able to set your objectives and the team is left with the creativity to figure out how to get the work done. Much like how beavers are instilled with a natural instinct to build dams, the team will work together to get the work done.

The gift of the goose is probably the hardest to achieve, yet this is what separates average teams from extraordinary teams. This is when there is no ego based behind a position, because as each goose is once a leader of the pack, they also move to the back of the line. Each individual has their own chance too lead the group while the others cheer them on.

The book will cover all the animals, how they work together in their natural habitats and how these principles can be used in your group, especially if there is no financial reward attached. Take a moment to visit your local Barnes and Noble or online Amazon store to check out the resource, as there is a wealth of knowledge and insight into how these concepts can directly turn around a group, or even make a new group quite successful.

Originally posted on Quora.

Leonard Kim consults startups and writes books like The Etiquette of Social Media: How to Connect and Respond to Others in the World of Social Media

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