Ways to motivate people

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

Why cant I motivate people?

One of the popular mistakes that people make when trying to motivate others is thinking that they can motivate those people using the things that they use to motivate themselves.

For example, a man who is obsessed by becoming a manger or a supervisor might mistakenly think think that he could motivate his subordinates by telling them that they can become mangers too if they did a certain task.

The mistake this man made is that he thought that all people are just like him. The truth is that what motivates a person may not be of any importance to another person and that’s why you should examine the background of the person you are trying to motivate in order to know what makes him tick.

Understand their needs in order to motivate them

Motivation is nothing but convincing someone that doing a certain task will satisfy one of his needs. Based on that person’s background and past experiences there are going to be certain key needs that can motivate him to do anything. All you have to do is to explore those needs then use them to motivate him.

Some people have unmet social needs and so they may become more motivated if they were allowed to work in a team than if they were offered a high paying job that would let them work alone.

On the other hand some people are only motivated by money and does not care at all about positions or titles. All you have to do to motivate those people is to give them the money and they will do the task.

Other drives could be fame, titles, recognition, ego issues, independence or freedom.

The game of motivation is simple as long you play it using the rules the other person has in his mind and not your own rules. If you assumed that all people are like you then you will do the mistake of trying to motivate them using what motivates you which might make no sense at all to them.

Understand the different Motivation styles

In order to motivate people you need to understand the different motivation styles.
Some people become motivated when they find a chance to come closer to their unmet needs while others are motivated by wanting to run away from the things they hate.

Again you must understand the person's motivation style so that you know the right way to use to motivate him.

For example, if money was the main source of motivation for a person and if his motivation style was the running away from pain then you can best motivate him by telling him that unless he does his job he wont take his full salary.

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