The people inside your business make or break your success.
Last month we shared the secrets to deliberately strengthening your “Charisma muscles” to become a more effective leader of people. A loyal and effective team is the most important asset in any business and the absent of such a team can wreck havoc regardless of how perfect market conditions might otherwise be.
You need a great team.
Part two of this series goes into the deeper psychology of creating lasting connections as the leader of a team of people.
Every human being has a set of unconscious motivators that they’re driven toward. It’s part of our evolutionary make up to seek certain “needs” and we all develop incredible loyalty and connection to the individuals and organizations that help us fulfill these needs.
This article will show you how to help meet your staff’s unconscious motivators in a way that drives the deepest, most lasting connection possible. Prepare yourself for the glue that binds people – and organizations – together!
The Six Human Needs (that everyone hungers for)
Obviously, this is the need that everyone is looking for a pay check to satiate. We all need security as a baseline and will be extraordinarily motivated to get it if we don’t have it.
A roof over our head and something in our mouth basically checks this off, but at a more abstract level it’s having “enough” – knowing that we’re not in any physical danger.
For the most part, your pay check will take care of this need but ensuring you hire staff who don’t have big problems with consumer debt can go a long way to building a team of people who remain un-troubled by this most basic of human needs.
Ironically, right after our need for security is met we start hungering for a bit of variety. We get bored with our hard-won security pretty quick – it’s this need that makes accountants go skydiving on the weekends. They need some variety and excitement in their lives.
Your staff need variety in their role. Getting bored will quickly make them look elsewhere for job opportunities that offer something simply different. A lot of franchises treat their people like robots and don’t anticipate this, contributing to high churn.
Find new challenges for your people, move them around inside the company and challenge them to learn new roles. Variety is exactly what it implies: A need for normal to be different.
The third human need is the most disastrously mis-managed in today’s society. So many at-risk youths find the sense of respect and acknowledgement they crave in violent actions that earn them notoriety in their community.
All humans want to be recognized as special. It drives kids to raise their hands highest in class and grown ups to seek out promotion and praise. When opportunities for recognition don’t present themselves, your staff will go looking elsewhere – their needs won’t be being met so you’ll lose them.
Satiating your team’s need for recognition isn’t as simple as an “employee of the month” award. Make sure you fulfill the need on multiple levels, in your one-on-one coaching conversations with team members and by creating healthy competitions between teams to win kudos. Often all that is needed is a specific challenge and the crowing rights for winning it – create the opportunity and watch how quickly your team will step up.
We’re social animals and the need for human connection is hardwired with in us.
The need to connect with others and socialize is assumed as easy to fulfill, so it’s often overlooked. That said, building a really cohesive and inspired crew will require you to make your business HQ the hub of connection in their lives.
The best company cultures include a social element – working there isn’t just a job, it’s being a member of a tribe. And that doesn’t happen by accident.
What opportunities are you creating for your people to really come together and bond?
If we’re not growing – the saying goes – then we’re dying.
Humans start to feel like they’re in a hamster wheel – spinning and spinning without going anywhere – when they’re not finding ways to grow as a person.
How are you helping your staff level themselves up in the game of life?
The best way to think about growth is that we all have skill levels in various different categories and we get a thrill – the satisfaction of a need met – by closing those capability gaps. Are you teaching your staff new skills for use in life and business?
It doesn’t always have to be a formal training in professional skills. A lot of small businesses inspire loyalty in their team by the owner working subtly as confidant and coach, helping staff develop in their personal lives to become more competent parents and friends.
Last but not least, the human need to contribute outside of ourselves kicks in. This need only gets awakened with the last five are being satisfied, and it’s the way we make the world a better place.
When you get the other five needs moving, you’ll be able to bring your staff together into a cohesive crew who help others.
This need doesn’t HAVE to be met in your for-profit company, but if you go the extra mile and find a way to do it you will create an even more cohesive team than ever.
These six needs are a roadmap for building a tight-knit staff who stick with your business through thick and thin. Building such a crew is the number one investment you can make and nothing is more important for building a successful business.