The Power of Communications,
Motivation, and Emotions
Effective leaders see more in other people than people see
in themselves, and one of your objectives as a leader is to bring their talents
to the surface.
Understanding the three fundamental elements that affect
performance will build team loyalty and cohesiveness. These elements are
communication, motivation, and emotions.
You've probably heard that people tend to follow three basic
communication styles: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic. Each of
us is a mix of all three, and our dominant style usually dictates how we
communicate. If the person with whom you are talking has a different style, the
message may be misunderstood. You certainly don't want that. Let me give you a
few traits that identify the three styles.
Visual Communicators speak
and read quickly. They would rather read than be read to. They remember what
they see, rather than what they hear. When you give them instructions, make
sure they're written, because they may forget verbal information. They need
an overall view and purpose, and are cautious until mentally clear about an
issue or project. They are good long-range planners and organizers. They are
neat, orderly, and appearance-oriented, in both dress and presentation.
Auditory Communicators need
to hear something to learn it. They may experience difficulties with written
instructions, preferring to hear them. They may also find writing to be a
challenge, and are better at communicating verbally. They learn by
listening, and they remember what was discussed rather than what was seen.
They are frequently eloquent speakers, are talkative, and love discussions.
They prefer to learn by taking teleclasses and listening to audio lessons.
perform best in an experiential environment. They need to touch, feel, and
experience things in order to understand. They speak slowly, use action
words, and want to act things out. They may have messy handwriting, and they
learn more effectively when physically active. They cannot sit still for
long periods of time. In schools, kinesthetic learners are often labeled
hyperactive. This may be your team member who volunteers to do the
When you give presentations, whether to your team or the
public, keep in mind that your audience is made up of all three styles. Usually,
the visual and auditory learners are satisfied with a person talking and using
visual aids, but what about the kinesthetic learners? Include exercises, or
simply get people to stand up, find a partner and debrief what was just
presented. People with dissimilar learning styles will grasp different parts of
your presentation, and sharing enhances the learning experience for everyone.
All leaders want to motivate their troops, and you're no
exception, right? Would it help you to have a better understanding of some of
the triggers that encourage people to take action? Here are the top five, in no
1. A drive to achieve and succeed
2. A desire to be appreciated and needed
3. A requirement to have things just right and orderly
4. A necessity for autonomy and self-reliance
5. A constraint to be safe and secure
Of course there are more, but these will give you a good
So, where do these triggers originate? They are components of
the belief systems that begin to develop at a very young age. Our neurological
systems are all wired differently, and we all have different nurturing
experiences. As the saying goes, "You are unique, just like everyone else." Now,
how can you capitalize on this knowledge? It's a two-step plan. First, get to
know your people and discover their "hot buttons" - their triggers. Then, help
them set goals that satisfy both your organization's fiscal requirements, and
their own personal needs, taking into account their triggers. Benchmarks and
timelines, along with measurable targets, will keep the focus on outcome and not
A person's ability to effectively act and think is intimately
linked with his or her physical and emotional well-being. Long-term exposure to
threat, conflict, or humiliation will damage self-esteem, and may result in a
vortex of negative emotions, self-limiting beliefs, apathy, anxiety, fear,
mistrust, immature coping behaviors, and a diminished interest and ability to
process information. As a team leader, you have the responsibility of being a
guide, an information provider, and a role model. Unreasonable demands to
achieve a quota may work in the short term, but it will backfire later in the
form of resentment and distrust.
So, what do you do if one of your team displays such
characteristics? Well, first of all, your role as mentor, guide, and team leader
does not include psychotherapy. All of us go through periods of having the
blues, and these are just normal cycles. In these instances, just be
understanding and supportive. If symptoms persist or escalate, you may have a
problem. Is this your problem? As a business professor of mine used to say, "It
depends." Has this person ever been a productive team player? How long has this
person been with you? Aside from recommending professional help, you may be
playing a greater role in their life than you think. You and your team may be
the only meaningful family that he or she has. Think of that before you make any
decisions. An environment of unconditional love may be just what this person has
been missing all along. J. C. Penney advised, "A company with internal
dissension is drained of energy before it has a chance to devote itself to its
proper purpose." High self-esteem and self-confidence boost effectiveness on the
job, and create team loyalty.
As a leader, you want to be as effective as possible. How you
relate with and inspire your staff has a direct consequence on your bottom line.
Understanding what makes your team members tick will place you in a better
position to influence their attitude and foster their success.