Time and time again great leaders find ways to inspire action.  Apple finds ways to continue to come up with innovative products, Google always finds a way to improve on existing services, and other organizations find ways to compete in their own fields.  But how?  Inspiration is a unique element of every team, and absolutely necessary to success.  So how can you inspire action in your team or organization?  Check out these tips.

  • There are leaders and there are those who lead – There is a difference between some leaders and others.  Don’t just follow the rulebook and be a typical supervisor. This brings me to my next tip.
  • You Manage a Department, You Lead People – The first supervisor position I ever received left me with a lot of questions.  I went to a trusted source for advice on managing staff, and they told me “you don’t manage people, you lead them.”  Human beings need to be inspired, and communicated with, not just be a name on a piece of paper.
  • People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it – This is a great quote from Dan Pink, and I can’t help but refer to it when inspiring staff.  Hiring staff who believes in what you do and why you do it will get you much farther than hiring someone who just needs a job.
  • Have Common Goals – Share goals with those you lead.  Have team goals, and remember, you are part of that team, even if you oversee it. 
  • Be Involved – Get your hands dirty, do the “grunt work,” and participate in the everyday tasks from time to time.  This shows your staff you really are part of the team, and that you are really all working together.  This will help eliminate separation by title. 
  • Lead by Example – If you want to inspire change in your office, you have to be the first one to do it.  You want your staff to come in earlier, spend less time on breaks, and spend more time working?  Pull up a chair in site of them and start doing what you expect of them.  Show them you are the perfect example of what they should be doing. 
  • Show some Trust – Showing your staff you trust them by giving them a big project will build their confidence.  Tell them you believe they can handle something that will reflect on you directly, and you may be surprised on how well they do.
  • Play to their Personality – Every person you lead will have a different personality, and therefore will have to be lead differently.  Don’t take the same approach with every employee.  Over time you will learn their reactions to things, and you will learn what makes them work hard, and what slows them down.