Regardless of your product or service, you are in the people development business. Acquiring and keeping good people is one of your most important jobs. The more your team members grow and develop their talents and abilities, the more they will be able to accomplish. See your team members as they can become and encourage them to become what you see. People tend to become what the most important people in their lives think they will become; and, you are one of the most important people in the lives of your team members.
A great manager has the knack for making team members think they can become more than they are now. A great manager is one who brings out the best in his or her team members. Listed below are some ways you can help team members grow and bring out the best in them.
Encourage Personal Growth – Give them opportunities to try new things and acquire new skills. Growth is motivating. Stagnation is boring and will sap a person’s energy. Provide opportunities for learning. Give team members personal development books, tapes, and CDs. Conduct book studies. Send team members to seminars and other training opportunities
Be a Good Role Model – When you are a student of continuous learning and personal growth, it will be easier to encourage your team members to embrace personal development and growth.
Encourage Personal Goal Setting – When team members accomplish personal goals, they have more confidence in themselves, their self-esteem expands, and they become more valuable employees. The personal goal doesn’t need to have anything to do with work. When someone quits smoking, loses weight, starts a workout program, improves their golf game, spends more quality time with loved ones, or any other goal that is important to them, they will feel better about themselves and that will show up in their work.
Help Team Members Identify Their Strengths – their talents and abilities – and help them spend more time using these strengths, talents, and abilities. Developing strengths is more motivational, takes less effort, and gives a greater return on investment than trying to fix weaknesses. If team members have been toiling in areas where they are weak, and you reassign them to work in areas where they can use their strengths, you’ll see a dramatic increase in natural motivation.
Look For Opportunities to Build Up Team Members – Give them credit for their suggestions; seek their opinions; recognize or point out their progress or improvement.
Set Goals for Growth – Make a list of your team members and identify what each of them can do to grow to the next level. Discuss what you have written with each team member, get their buy-in that they would like to accomplish the goal, and help them develop a written plan of action to achieve the goal. If, when you make your list, you discover some personal development goals common among team members, consider some group training that will address the goal area.
Set Up a Personal Development Library – This can be a room, an area of a room, a book shelf, cabinet, or any other designated area that team members have access to. You can have a formal check-out system or use an honor system. The important thing is to make it as easy as possible for team members to have access to material that will help them grow, develop, and use more of their potential.
Resist Any Temptation to Use Abusive Tactics such as sarcasm, ridicule, name-calling, or public embarrassment.
People will remember how you made them feel – good and bad – long after they forget the words. Seeing team members as they can become will help you view them in a positive light, choose the right words and actions, and encourage personal and professional growth.