It is reported that 20% of workers are demotivated by their manager or their work. In another study Gallup found that 70% of variance in engagement was down to the leadership exerted by their managers. The benefits of having an engaged and motivated workforce are clear with the following benefits reported:
- Engaged staff are 44% more productive than those merely “satisfied”.
- Businesses with engaged staff report a 41% reduction in absenteeism.
- Businesses with engaged staff report a 50% improvement in retention.
So, if leadership and managerial motivation is so key, why this mismatch between the known benefits of good leadership and its efficacy? Could it be that most companies promote workers into managerial positions because they “deserve it”, rather than that they have the talent for the role. By this statement, I mean that these candidates have demonstrated success in some role for which they were recruited – sales, logistics, accountancy etc. Roles in which they demonstrated largely technical skills and personal proficiency, however possibly did not demonstrate any ability to relate, communicate, negotiate or influence. In short, businesses are selecting on the basis of technical skills and not interpersonal talents.
By talents I mean the naturally recurring patterns in the ways we think, feel, and behave that predict where we’ll perform at our best. Here are five talents that we find tend to be shown by great managers/leaders:
- They motivate employees to take action by engaging them with a compelling mission and vision.
- They have the assertiveness to drive outcomes and the ability to overcome adversity and resistance. Yet they are open, approachable and listen.
- They create a culture of clear accountability.
- They build relationships that create trust, open dialogue, and full transparency. These characteristics are the key building blocks for effective teams.
- They make decisions based on desired and agreed outcomes that will boost productivity. They are not driven by politics.
Developing these talents requires high level self-awareness with emotional intelligence and the agility. Why not take a look at the section of our website that talks about Everything Disc – the key to unlock your potential as a leader.