Instilling purpose in your employees takes more than motivational talks, lofty speeches, or mission statements. In fact, if overblown or insincere, those methods can backfire, triggering cynicism rather than commitment. To inspire and engage your employees, keep two things in mind. First, purpose is a feeling. You could tell your team that their work is important, but how can you help individuals feel it firsthand? Think about ways to show people the impact of their jobs. Perhaps you could bring a customer in to share a testimonial, or send a small team into the field to experience the client’s needs for themselves. Second, authenticity matters — a lot. If your attempts at creating purpose do not align with how you’ve acted in the past, employees will likely be skeptical, and they might be left feeling more manipulated than inspired. Making the pursuit of purpose a routine, rather than a one-off initiative, will show employees that you’re serious about it.
This tip is adapted from “Helping Your Team Feel the Purpose in Their Work,” by Dan Cable
Categories: Management and Career Tips