Focus on the Positives: Engaging Teams with Encouragement

March 22, 2012

Have you encountered challenges with grumbling co-workers, low performing team members, or colleagues who move at the speed of molasses? This could be because of a complete lack of motivation and low morale. When this happens, you may become to feed into this negativity, which only serves to make things a lot worse.

It’s easy as a leader to get caught up in only seeing the negatives in your subordinates. This can happen in any environment, from a small company to a big corporation. The fact is, you are at the top of the food chain, so everything you do has an impact on those below you.

There are some steps you can take right now to change gears and create a more engaged team in which productivity can thrive. Here are some ways to start focusing on the positives with encouragement.

Conduct team building activities. The surest way to help engage your team takes the form of a mandatory team building activity. This can be a great way to turn employee morale around for the better, encourage group participation, and let team members get to know each other better in a safe space. Plan a fun, yet educational team building event by contacting an expert team activities consultant. Or just choose from a list of activities that your team has suggested in the past.

Build on the unique skills of team members. Every person is a critical part of the team as a whole. When people learn to use their skills and talents fully, it can be a beautiful thing to observe. Encourage team members to develop their skills through encouraging group and individual projects, and provide plenty of positive feedback and training opportunities. Let team members form mentoring networks, and allow the transfer of knowledge between peers as they collaborate on things together.

Create team projects to win respect. If you have a large group of people who are segregated by the kinds of work they perform, it’s time to mix things up so that the organization becomes an inspiring place. Match team members up on new projects who bring interesting and new skills to the table. Let each person share his or her areas of expertise, and encourage the pairing up of those who seem to work well together. Don’t let anyone get ostracized or put down by another at any time.

Recognize and celebrate achievements. Many times, people keep achievements private, yet they wish they could share these things with others. Keep communication open so that individuals can share their achievements with the group. Celebrate these events with a special meeting, or award. When the organization completes a goal, earns a new project, or achieves industry recognition, be sure to give credit where credit is due.

To lead by encouragement means trying to see the positive in every team effort and organizational goal. Good people stay in organizations because leaders take the time to encourage and recognize their contribution to the team. Make sure you are doing your part as a leader to keep this momentum building.

This post is brought to you by the good folks at Dale Carnegie Training of Alabama, providers of professional development and management development courses and information in Huntsville, Alabama. We would love to connect with you on Facebook and Twitter @DaleCarnegieAL


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