When my daughter was smaller she and her friends started a band called "Hello, We're Awesome". I helped her design some fliers for their first performance, complete with star borders and stage names: Milk Chocolate, Mandarin Oranges, Laughing Twizzle and Tropical Starburst.
Granted, they haven't decided on the type of music they'll play or if any of them even know how to sing or play an instrument, but that doesn't matter. They are awesome and have a compelling need to tell everyone, quickly, via neon-green fliers. Don't you wish you felt the same way? Some days I can't help but think I'm a failure.
But somehow I've managed to raise a child who feels compelled to scream to the world that she (and her best buds) are the awesomest. This intense self-esteem came from somewhere, and since I am the someone where "somewhere" began, I believe I shall take all the credit. Well, at lease some of it. Maybe you, too, are an awesome inspirer.
Maybe you have kids who run around announcing their fabulousness and showcasing their budding talents at magic or dance or acrobatics. Or maybe, you have employees looking to you not just for leadership, but for inspiration. In case you're running out of awesome ideas to keep them thriving, here are three more:
- Listen: Christine Riordan, a leadership coach and president-elect of Adelphi University told Harvard Business Review: "To be able to motivate and inspire others, you need to learn how to listen in both individual meetings and at the group level."
- Explain the Why: Employees want to know the why as much as the how. Employees want to understand how what they are doing will benefit them and the company. Tell them why they are doing this assignment to provide valuable context to what they are accomplishing. You wouldn't pitch to an investor if without explaining the benefit to them, right?
- Provide Public Recognition: If someone does a good job don't just let them know, let the entire company know! Don't just limit praise to successes either. If a team member has a creative idea that doesn't succeed, still encourage them to keep trying and to fail better.
It is better to reward innovation than letting a great pass by because the employee was too afraid to speak up.