Learning how to motivate people is a foundational tenet of change management. You can’t create an organizational culture or deal with a sudden and unexpected change well if people aren’t properly motivated.
While that might seem like an easy task, organizations get it wrong far too often. However, by recognizing and having empathy for what people are going through and rewarding the behaviors you want to see, you’re on the right path for motivation.
To discuss motivation, Steve Van Valin joins Jennifer Ayers once again on the Survive & Thrive podcast. He gives real-world examples of positive and negative mindsets that can impact change, and how to properly motivate people to embrace change, alter the culture of an organization, or deal with a sudden and unexpected change.
Listen to Jennifer and Steve discuss motivation:
Introducing Steve Van Valin (2:42)
Jennifer reintroduces Steve to the podcast. They go over some of the highlights from his career and his expertise.
Positive experience with change (4:16)
As Steve notes, sometimes leaders get in the weeds and forget to take a look at the bigger picture and how it impacts the company and brand. He believes connecting how a change will impact the bigger picture of the company is necessary to have a positive experience.
Negative experience with change (6:36)
Even the most positive people can recoil at a sudden or unexpected change. Though it can be easy to get down in the dumps about the perceived amount of extra work, Steve believes you should pause that initial reaction and see how the change truly impacts your workload. Creating a list of the things you don’t need to do or can wait is a helpful way of reestablishing where you really sit.
Ways organizations can influence change (9:54)
How will the change impact people? According to Steve, one of the best ways an organization can influence change is by informing people of how it will affect their lives. Jennifer believes simply recognizing what peoples’ needs are and having them tell you where they view potential issues can help stop mistakes before they happen and get better buy-in.
How do you change hearts and minds? (14:03)
Giving people confidence they can work through something is one of the best ways to changing someone’s heart and mind, especially when a change is presented. Teach them how to engage with one another and work through problems as a team, and they’ll feel they can handle it.
The power of empowerment (19:46)
Jennifer and Steve talk about the importance of empowering people, especially with the types of behaviors you want to see in the organization.
Though Steve acknowledges it’s a cliche, he believes you change culture “one conversation at a time.” Through years of experience, Steve has found that recognizing and praising the small things done really well instead of focusing on the big tasks can help motivate. He even gives an example of how to praise someone to get the best results.
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