How Can I Motivate My Team?

There are many different motivations for individuals but how do you motivate your team? There are three core elements for motivating the team.

1. Clear Compelling Vision – You must communicate the vision so every team member understands the vision with clarity. 

2. Have a Plan and Stick To It – A plan is different to a target. The plan sets out the steps to achieve the target. 

3. Work Together – Everybody in the team is believing and following the vision and delivering on the plan.


This is the second in the series of questions that I get asked from leaders when I’m working in organisations. And this question is about how can I motivate my team

Team vs Individual Motivation

Now, there’s a whole lot of things that actually motivate individuals, and this like money, career opportunity, promotions, just getting some positive feedback on how they’re going. So, all those are a given, and there are many, many more that motivate individuals. And when you think about teams, well, all of those things are still current and should be included in the way you manage your people. But I think teams actually look to higher things as well. So some of those things are, and these are essential if you really wanna get your team motivated. So given that you’re doing all the other stuff, remember the previous video, we talked about having the safe space for people to work in, being prepared to be vulnerable, and having a clear purpose. Well, this type is a higher level now and look at it from a really, from an organisational team perspective.

Communicate a Clear Compelling Vision

So the first thing is, you must have a clear and compelling vision. So if you don’t communicate that at every level your organisation and every team member that reports to you, knows that with absolute clarity, you’re already setting yourself up for failure. So you gotta find ways to communicate there. And so, I communicate with person A, I tell him the story this is way. Knowing B thinks of things differently, I need to talk to that person and communicate that way. The way that works for them. And then as a collective, I keep repeating that in every opportunity I get, so every meeting, we start, we talk about where we’re heading and what we’re trying to do and have that links to that compelling vision. So it becomes the way we speak, the way we communicate, the way we measure success is do we take steps closer and closer to our vision through every action that we take within our team.

Have a Plan & Stick To it

The next credible part is having a plan. Now I’ve been in organisations, and they have plans. But their plans are more like targets. You know, like they don’t actually really expect to deliver the plan, so nobody gets really passionate about it, because after many observations, I realise that the plan was just really a guide towards where we’re heading and reality kicks in and we don’t actually get there, and it becomes a norm.

So that’s not what I’m talking about, so no no no, I’m not talking about that sort of plan. I’m talking about the plan that says these are the steps we take to actually achieve our target. Subtle difference. So step by step, we’re going to do this. Now the other key thing to consider here is when you’re building a team to get behind a compelling vision and to actually deliver on that, you’ve gotta allow them to have success early.

So if you give them some successes, they get powered up. There’s nothing more exciting for a team than to actually nail a few things. Look at any sports team out there. Look at the celebration they have when they score a goal or something. Even though they may lose the game at the end of the round, they actually celebrate every one of those steps. So, look for ways to create incremental steps in your plan that are easy, in the first stages, for the team to achieve.

As they build on their success, they get more momentum, then you can add some more complexity to your plan. So, the team grows with your complexity of your plan, and they keep hitting success after success.

And then the next thing, the critical thing, is in your planning, have those regular daily, weekly, and monthly reviews. And that’s where we talk about, if you have a plan, stick to it. So, there are no excuses.

Let’s talk about, did we actually achieve what we set out to do in this day in this week, or this month? And if not, what do we need to do differently to get that back on track? It’s not a matter of we just accept we didn’t do it, what do we need to go out there and actually nail it? Do we need more resources? Do we need to pull together to get there? Do we need different equipment? That leader’s job is to do that process of review, to actually help the team believe that this isn’t negotiable. We have a plan, we’ve agreed on it, and we’re gonna deliver it.

Once we get that going, people feel I can follow this leader, I can be part of this team, and I welcome it.

Work Together

Now, the third step, and it seems like, well, of course, it’s obvious, Darryl, but work together. Now, how many times have you been on teams where there’s been almost a movement that says we’re one team, we work together. But the reality in that environment, is that’s not what really happens. So, what I’m talking about here is we work together. That means we gotta get everybody in our team on track and believing and following the vision, and delivering on the plan.

Okay, so, that means we need then, once we get that happening, then we can look beyond their own boundaries and look to where the teams that we have to work with to get our work done, or to deliver something to them. So, once we’ve got our own act, at least to a reasonable level of success, then we go on and gauge the other teams. So, this is where the leader steps in and takes the lead. They’re gonna engage the other leaders of the other functional teams, and look at ways to improve the relationship and understanding of each other’s work so that we get better and better outcomes.

The reality is, when that starts to happen, it permeates through an organisation. So, yes, you need leadership looking down and organising, and structuring, and supporting a business, but every leader in the business should be also working up, working out, to continually move towards delivering this compelling vision. Which you can only do when you work together.

 So, there’s three quick clues as to how you get a motivated team. I look forward to you coming back in the next session.


If you would like to work with me on developing leadership skills in your business. Talk To Us