Apr 29 2012

Do you DO your job, or LOVE your job?

Are you just along for the ride

                    

…or are you making it happen?

 

You’re the boss. You don’t always need other people’s research to make decisions about your business. So put all the analytics and studies aside for a minute. We have, after all, learned by the time that we’re teenagers that the world never fulfills what all the sages, futurists, soothsayers, economists, and Chicken Little’s predict.

 

The physical world that each of us inhabit may be the same planet in the same universe, but the mental, emotional, and spiritual worlds each of us wake up to every morning are as radically different as each of us is unique, even when we may be living, working, and playing with common goals, grounds, pursuits, and like-minded people.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs spells out how different the motivation needs are for each person at any given moment, and suggests that we do the best we can as employers to be good detectives and figure out –ongoing– what, exactly, will prompt repeat positive behaviors. 

Most people DO the jobs they have; they get through the day; they “live” for the weekend; they rise to the occasion when necessary not out of enthusiasm, but from feelings of obligation . . . or fear. Are you listening to this, dear boss’s? If it sounds familiar, you may want to reassess where your business is headed, who’s going along for the ride, and who’s making it happen.

This –2012– is not a time to be timid in your decision making about your people and your purposes if you are to continue moving forward. No, I’m not suggesting a program of ruthlessness. I am merely pointing out something you already know but have perhaps relegated the thinking to that back burner in your mind: that things are not always what they seem.

Every business owner’s greatest asset is her or his people. But just being friendly and nice to your people is not enough to lead you (and them) down that elusive path of success and prosperity.

Even in these uncertain economic times, employees today seek challenge, opportunity, recognition, and appreciation more than pay raises. Let me say that again: Employees today seek challenge, opportunity, recognition, and appreciation more than pay raises. If you just passed over the earlier reference to Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, stop a minute to check it out here.

This is not to suggest that money is unimportant; money earned though as part of –for example–  a performance incentive that drives new business in the door is valued much more than an annual review raise.

When companies give turkeys out

every Thanksgiving,

they are expected to give turkeys out

every Thanksgiving.

As with many government program recipients, it’s easy to become lackadaisical, uninspired, and dependent when business owners (or the government) cultivate those behaviors. But there’s no need to go off the deep end and become a rah-rah cheerleader. . . or pile rewards on people to the point of disability, or –like the turkeys– have them be taken for granted.

It doesn’t really take a lot of time or energy to pat backs; shake hands; smile; offer sincere compliments; say please and thank you with at least a flicker of eye contact (or some email boldfacing); or make a practice of telling people how much you appreciate them for their time/ effort/ support/ loyalty/ conscientiousness . . .

Take another look around you. What and who are your sources of reliability and positive energy? What and who are pulling you and your business into uninspired, negative directions? As Chaucer said over 600 years ago,  Time and tide wait for no man. Don’t delay taking action. Being timid costs money and relationships. Choose instead to step it up and move on.

# # #

Hal@Businessworks.US   931.854.0474

Open  Minds  Open  Doors

Make today a GREAT day for someone!

 

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