How many of us have had “that” job that we absolutely dreaded going to each day? I am willing to bet that the percentage is high. Have you ever stopped and asked yourself what it was that you didn’t like about that job? Was it boring? Not enough pay? Did you have undesirable coworkers? Were you disrespected? Or maybe you didn’t see yourself growing there. Having been a former classroom teacher, one of my favorite undergraduate courses was psychology. I enjoyed studying people and their complex minds and emotions. Understanding (or at least trying to understand) human behavior in my opinion is the foundation to becoming a great teacher or leader. By understanding learning styles (auditory, visual, or kinesthetic) and the eight multiple intelligences (musical, bodily kinesthetic, verbal-linguistic, logical-mathematical, naturalistic, intrapersonal, visual spatial and interpersonal) I learned that in order to motivate my students, I needed to understand the variety of ways that learning happens. I was challenged to present the curriculum in a way that could stimulate each individuals’ mind and to enable content to be absorbed. My class listened to music, we made charts, we partnered up, we took walks – anything to keep things interesting and engaging.
So an underlying question that I have had since I exited the teaching world is…. why are these practices not more commonly used in business environments?
Most businesses employ a wonderful collection of people who have a tremendous amount of knowledge and skill just waiting to be utilized for the betterment of the company. However, do the leaders of the businesses know how to motivate and maximize their employees’ potential AND establish a great place to work?
What motivates you and your colleagues to come to work?
Stay tuned for part two of this topic.