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Understand Personalities and Explain Things In The Language Individual People Understand
By Michael Stahl   Printer Friendly Version

Interestingly enough, our human inclination to share becomes subdued with age as people run into critics and complainers. A speaker noted that when he asked 500 people to draw a picture of a horse at a lecture, the only two people willing to share their drawings were four and five years old.

You can develop a better understanding of how to motivate employees when you recognize that an "unmotivated" team member may be a "subdued" team member who has a lot to contribute and wants to be involved. You just have to bring them out. Not everyone feels comfortable in a group or team environment, especially at the beginning. Whether a person is extroverted or introverted or detail oriented or "big-picture" oriented can have a huge impact on their effectiveness. EVERYONE has something to give (if you have appropriately interviewed and researched them) so start to listen to what people might NOT be saying.

Take the time to get to know your employees as people, not just as numbers. You might be pleasantly surprised at the talent, skill and ability a person has that you consider "lazy". Some people need a little more prompting than others.

Nido Qubein says there are three kinds of people:

The kind of person that, when confronted with a situation, can determine what needs to be done, come up with a way of doing it and get the job done.

The kind of person that when confronted with a situation and told what needs to be done can come up with a way of doing it and get the job done.

The kind of person that when confronted with a situation and told what needs to be done and exactly how to do it can get the job done.

Find out what kind of people you work with and then give them a chance based on what you know about their personality. Get into the habit of being a "good-finder" not a negativity expert.

When explaining things to team members that are overly technical, try telling them things with just three points. An example would be to define "innovation" as consisting of three parts:

  • defining the problem
  • searching for ideas
  • practical implementation

This simplifies a very technical description with three points people can understand. A conscious effort to simplify complicated processes and concepts will get you further than complicated descriptions of simple things.

The more you can streamline your communication the more productive you can be; HOWEVER, make sure you communicate your ideas accurately and that people UNDERSTAND what you mean. Too much time and money is lost in any business because of poor communication.


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