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What Are the Best Tips for Improving Motivational Skills?

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  • Written By: K.C. Bruning
  • Edited By: John Allen
  • Last Modified Date: 26 October 2014
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There are several simple methods which can be used to improve motivational skills. They include staying positive, being accessible, and providing guidance without micromanaging. It is also helpful to learn what motivates others and to offer occasional rewards for good work. Overall, the best long-term motivational results come from constructive, supportive behavior. This helps workers to motivate themselves, which tends to be most effective for the long-term.

One of the best ways to improve personal motivational skills is to provide a good example for others. By demonstrating a positive attitude, engagement in their work, and efficiently managing daily duties, leaders can greatly increase their powers of motivation. They also create an atmosphere that is conducive to work.

Leaders can also improve motivational skills by creating an environment that suits the people they wish to influence. It can be helpful to observe a group in order to determine what kind of conditions help them to thrive. Through these actions leaders improve their motivational skills by encouraging others to motivate themselves.

People are often more likely to motivate themselves if they are given a stake in the work at hand. The more personally relevant success is to an individual, the more likely they will be to work efficiently. This can include giving workers more power to direct their work, starting a profit sharing program, and otherwise giving team members a sense of ownership in their tasks.

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Understanding what motivates others can be a powerful way to improve motivational skills. While it is best to have a team that can motivate itself, rewarding good work can also be beneficial. A leader can gain a lot of leverage by learning what drives his or her workers, whether it is money, additional vacation time, or professional advancement.

One of the best ways to acquire an understanding of workers is to encourage regular feedback. By staying open to suggestions, leaders can increase their motivational skills by keeping workers engaged and aligned with company goals. Strong employee involvement in decision making can also increase unity in an organization, which also often leads to improved motivation.

Another effective way to improve motivational skills is to avoid using intimidation and similarly negative behavior. While these methods may get immediate results, they will typically backfire in the long run. They can also permanently damage the relationship between the leader and subordinates, which can affect productivity and lead to the loss of team members.

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Fa5t3r
Post 3

@umbra21 - It's tough to apply that to, say, managing a retail store though. I think in that case it's important to really be positive and back it up with real rewards. I was always thrilled when I got a little extra bonus or gift from my workplace and it made me feel appreciated and loyal. Usually it wasn't an expensive item or bonus either, but it meant a lot to me that my hard work was being noticed.

umbra21
Post 2

@Ana1234 - I would contend that it depends on the person and the situation. Some people will never respond to negative feedback and are motivated much more by praise. Some people need to be given occasional negative feedback. If you praise them too much they will stop trying because they won't see the point.

On the other hand, most people will respond really well to thoughtful feedback. This is particularly true of children. If you only praise their work it soon becomes background noise. If you criticize it, it could damage their motivation. If you engage with them about it, asking questions and relating it to your own experience, then that will motivate them because that's a real response.

Ana1234
Post 1

When I was a kid I remember I would come into conflict with my teacher for having messy handwriting all the time. I always tried my very hardest to get the exercises done quickly, because I preferred to read and I would have more time for that if I was finished writing.

One day, even though my writing was just as bad as ever, my teacher took the time to praise me for it and even sent me to another teacher to get praise from her. I was kind of shocked, because I had never been praised like that before but I wanted more so the next day I was very careful and precise.

When I saw the look of genuine pleasure and surprise on my teacher's face I realized she had been manipulating me the day before. It really taught me that the best way to motivate people is with the carrot, rather than a stick.

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