At Scott’s Teambuilding Adventures we believe a leader should be able to motivate the team to move in the desired direction. Morale is the platform and motivation the ability to excite people to action. However, the first item on the agenda should be the leader’s attitude and the creation of a positive environment.
At the outset, we have to look at ourselves first. When faced with a group of individuals, many leaders tend to assume either negative or positive theories about mankind.
Bruce is a grumpy fellow whose handicap is golf. Nobody wants to play with him. He surreptitiously drives off the ladies tee. A massive swipe and a veering hook-shot lands him in the long grass. The man is a magician – his ball slinks mysteriously from the rough to the fairway without him even touching a club. He whacks his next shot – oops, a slice into the car park. The ball fortuitously bounces off the Chairman’s new Mercedes and embeds itself into the bunker. Two explosions with his wedge and the ball settles on the edge of the green. Three earth-gouging putts and plop – it’s in the hole.
The Estate Manager shudders as he surveys the green; minutes ago, snooker table smooth – it now resembles a lunar landscape.
Still a master of deception, Bruce’s score-card reads; two shots down the fairway and one putt. A bogey!
He imagines the rest of mankind is like him, not totally honest and with a scarcity mentality. Bruce sums up the human race as follows, “They dislike and will avoid work, cannot accept responsibility, are only motivated by money and have little creativity except when getting around management rules.”
Harvey however, is a little more adventurous and understands that given the opportunity employees will direct themselves to an accepted target and can enjoy work in the right environment.
They want to be given responsibility and he finds the discipline people impose upon themselves is often more severe than that imposed upon them. (Look at any marathon runner).
Moreover, many are stimulated by a desire to attain their own potential and have abundant creativity and ingenuity. These folk are widely distributed but unfortunately grossly underused.
It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. If we have a negative attitude about our staff we are going to fail as competent leaders. People are apt to behave how they are treated. If we remember the theatrical production of ‘My Fair Lady’ we see the Pygmalion Effect in evidence. Professor Higgins teaches a flower girl to speak perfect English and she moves from the status of flower seller to highly sophisticated female. He treated her like a lady, and she became one!
As the head, if you indicate to someone they are ‘limited’, they will be inclined to match up to your prediction. However, if you show that you have high regard for them (which might not always be justified by the facts), they will invariably rise to meet your expectations.
The only way to unshackle employees from their self-imposed limitations is to arrange a challenge slightly above their ‘accepted’ capability – let it be known that you trust them implicitly to have a positive outcome; encourage, walk alongside and watch them break boundaries. Responsibility stretches ability!
If you expect favourable results from your team, handle and regard them from the outset as a winning entity. Treat others as you yourself would like to be treated.
Start small and recognise that the fear of failure is in excess of the actual ‘danger.’ The raging torrent of today becomes a fordable stream tomorrow. A challenge taking people out of their comfort zone will accelerate growth, break down the self-imposed barriers of their minds and direct them on the path to further achievement.
And they will enjoy the expedition!
“Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly and they will show themselves great.” Ralph Waldo Emerson
Scott’s Teambuilding Adventures has a range of fun activities for your team. Excite, motivate and encourage them with events such as abseiling, group dynamics, orienteering and go karting. Contact us today so we can put together a solution for your specific needs and budget.