Our intern, Mikayla Chicquette, is back with another post. This time she delves into the psychology that motivates employees, as well as the essential principles that a successful startup is built upon.
Entrepreneurs exist to solve problems. It’s their essential quality. And startups are formed because some problems are too large for one person to tackle. But as many entrepreneurs quickly discover, startups aren’t infallible. Not all answers are clear-cut, and not all employees are passionate about the vision driving the company.
So, what does it take to find answers to problems? Is it a room full of people too afraid to speak up, or is it the one person with an idea – even if it is not a real solution? Is it incentives upon incentives designed to motivate employees to work harder to find a solution? Or, is it the exact opposite?
Picture your typical conference room brainstorming session. Everyone “working together,” waiting for an idea to pop from the ether. Not exactly ideal is it? While working in groups is not always a bad approach – in many cases workplace politics necessitate it – creating ideas on an individual level forces everyone at the table to be more creative. Then, when people to come together for their brainstorming session, everyone can share their opinions in order to work to a solution that creates real results.
But getting people to think and work hard through an incentive-based system (whether punishment or reward) does not actually motivate people. History proved this time and time again, yet the majority of business models still cling to the myth of incentive driven motivation. So, what do you do instead?
Motivated people are passionate about their job. If they are not passionate about what they do, they have no reason to work hard toward the success of the business. That isn’t to say people don’t need to be paid, this is a capitalistic society, and people need money to keep a roof over their head and food on the table. In order for people to be motivated to do their job, the job they are doing must be interesting, and they need to believe in the business itself.
So, in short, create a business model that has a real purpose and gets people excited. Hire people that are passionate about the business and their job. Pay them what their value is, but don’t use an incentives system. Then, people will want to come up with their own ideas, that when put together, will result in working solutions for the core business.