Welcome to the first installment of our four-week journey into effective leadership and team empowerment. In this week’s series, we’ll delve into the core of leadership — understanding your team’s motivations. Beyond the titles and roles, what truly drives your team members? By discovering their individual motivations, you can unlock their full potential and foster an environment of trust and support. Additionally, we’ll explore how nervous system engagement plays a pivotal role in creating the experience you want with your team.


The Foundation of Leadership

Leadership goes beyond giving directives and managing tasks. It’s about building relationships, understanding individual needs, and guiding your team towards shared goals. A critical aspect of this process is understanding what motivates each team member. People are unique, and what drives one person might not have the same effect on another. Recognizing these differences is the first step toward effective leadership.



1. LBWA (Leadership By Walking Around)

Effective leaders don’t confine themselves to their offices. LBWA, or Leadership By Walking Around, is a practice that involves engaging with your team on a personal level. It’s about more than just checking on their progress; it’s about asking questions, actively listening, and learning about their aspirations, both professional and personal. By doing so, you can uncover what truly motivates them.


2. Building Trust and Social Capital

Trust is the foundation of any successful team. When team members trust their leader, they’re more likely to open up about their motivations and challenges. Social capital, the network of relationships within a team, is also crucial. Leaders who invest in building social capital create an environment where team members feel safe sharing their thoughts and ideas. This trust and social capital are essential for understanding motivation.


3. Creating a Culture of Development and Support

As a leader, it’s your responsibility to create a culture of growth and support. Encourage your team to set personal and professional development goals. Provide opportunities for skill-building and career advancement. When your team members see that you’re invested in their growth, they’ll be more willing to share their motivations and align them with the team’s objectives.


4. Critical Feedback Tools

Feedback is a powerful tool for understanding motivation. It’s not just about praise; it’s also about addressing areas where improvement is needed. Implement tools like the Situation-Behavior-Impact (SBI2) model for feedback. This model helps in reinforcing positive behaviors and redirecting when necessary. Constructive feedback shows your team that you care about their development, which can motivate them to excel.


Nervous System Engagement: Crafting the Experience

Beyond understanding motivation, consider the type of experience you want to create with your team. Engaging their nervous systems is vital in this aspect. Do you want a work environment filled with stress, fear, and tension, or one marked by creativity, collaboration, and innovation? By managing your own nervous system and fostering a positive environment, you can guide your team towards a more productive and fulfilling experience.


Empowering Your Team through Motivation and Nervous System Engagement

Effective leadership isn’t one-size-fits-all; it’s about recognizing the unique motivations of each team member and creating an experience that empowers them. LBWA, building trust and social capital, creating a culture of development, using critical feedback tools, and considering nervous system engagement are all essential components of this process. As you invest in understanding your team’s motivations and shaping their experience, you’ll not only boost their performance but also create a dynamic, motivated, and united team.

Stay tuned for next week’s blog, where we’ll explore the importance of mid-project check-ins and how they can lead to greater team productivity and success.

Would enjoy hearing your take on this topic and what has worked for you. If this topic resonates with you as a topic to explore in more depth reach out to schedule a Discovery Session. These sessions are tailored to delve deep into your leadership challenges and aspirations, habits and patterns, and what has been getting in your way towards attaining your goals. You’ll walk away with actionable insights to elevate your career journey.