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Motivation Techniques Every Leader Should Know

Motivation Techniques Every Leader Should Know


Motivation Techniques Every Leader Should Know

As a leader, it is essential to understand the power of motivation. Motivated teams are more productive, more creative, and more engaged in their work. However, motivating a team is not always easy. Different people are motivated by different things, and it can be a challenge to find the right approach for each individual. In this article, we will explore some key motivation techniques that every leader should know, including real-life examples and a storytelling approach.

Setting Clear Goals and Expectations

One of the most important motivation techniques a leader can use is to set clear goals and expectations for their team. When employees understand what is expected of them and have a clear understanding of the goals they are working towards, they are more likely to feel motivated to achieve those goals.

For example, when Elon Musk set an ambitious goal for SpaceX to land a rocket on a floating platform in the ocean, the entire team was motivated to work towards that goal. Musk’s clear vision and expectations for the team drove them to achieve something that was thought to be impossible.

Providing Recognition and Rewards

Recognition and rewards are powerful motivators for employees. When a team member goes above and beyond, it is important for leaders to acknowledge their hard work and dedication. This can be as simple as publicly praising them in a team meeting or as significant as providing a financial bonus or promotion.

For instance, when Indra Nooyi was the CEO of PepsiCo, she implemented a “Performance with Purpose” program that recognized and rewarded employees who contributed to the company’s sustainability goals. This initiative motivated employees to go the extra mile in their work, knowing that their efforts would be recognized and rewarded.

Empowering and Trusting Your Team

Empowering and trusting your team is another important motivation technique. When employees feel trusted and empowered to make decisions, they are more likely to take ownership of their work and feel motivated to succeed.

Take Richard Branson, for example. He has built a successful empire by empowering his employees to make decisions and take risks. His trust in his team has led to a culture of innovation and motivation within the Virgin Group.

Building Strong Relationships

Building strong relationships with your team members is crucial for motivation. When employees feel valued and supported, they are more likely to be motivated to do their best work.

Howard Schultz, the former CEO of Starbucks, is known for his ability to build strong relationships with his employees. He took the time to get to know his team members, understand their strengths and challenges, and support them in achieving their goals. This approach led to a highly motivated and engaged workforce at Starbucks.

Taking a Storytelling Approach

One powerful way to motivate your team is to take a storytelling approach. People are naturally drawn to stories, and they can be a powerful tool for inspiring and motivating others.

For example, when Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone, he didn’t just talk about the features and capabilities of the device. He told a story about how the iPhone would change the way people communicate, work, and live. This storytelling approach captured people’s imaginations and motivated them to be a part of something revolutionary.


Motivating a team is essential for driving success and achieving goals. By setting clear goals and expectations, providing recognition and rewards, empowering and trusting your team, and building strong relationships, leaders can create a motivated and engaged workforce. Taking a storytelling approach can also be a powerful tool for inspiring and motivating others. By understanding and implementing these motivation techniques, leaders can drive productivity, creativity, and success within their teams.


What do you do if a team member is not motivated?

If a team member is not motivated, it is important to understand the reasons behind their lack of motivation. Take the time to have a conversation with the individual to understand their challenges and concerns. Provide support and guidance to help them overcome any obstacles and find motivation in their work.

How do you recognize and reward employees on a tight budget?

Recognition and rewards don’t have to be expensive. Simple gestures such as a handwritten thank-you note, a public shoutout in a team meeting, or an extra day off can go a long way in recognizing and rewarding employees for their hard work.

What is the role of motivation in employee engagement?

Motivation is closely linked to employee engagement. When employees are motivated, they are more likely to be engaged in their work, committed to the company’s goals, and willing to go the extra mile to achieve success.



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