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Motivation and Productivity

By Dr. Geri Markel On 

Tips to Help Leaders to Keep Motivation Up

“I just can’t get started.”

“I’ll never get it done.”

“It’s overwhelming.”

“What difference does it make?”

These phrases illustrate how the nature of a task influences motivation to begin and stick to a task. When the task appears tedious, difficult, or irrelevant, motivation lags and so does productivity.  It makes sense then, to provide directions and support when tasks may be viewed negatively. You ensure that the work environment promotes motivation.

For example, leaders, managers, and supervisors can improve motivation by ensuring clear directions, specific standards, available resources, and concrete feedback.  Productivity rises when we’re sure about what to do or how well it needs to be done. In addition, the greater the appreciation shown by leaders for the team for tackling a complex task, the greater the motivation to begin and complete the task.

Tips to Help Individuals and Teams to Keep Motivation Up

Of course, there are times when we need to bolster our motivation to begin a complex or boring task. Working independently or as team member, if you are not motivated to start a task, try these tips:

  • Remember a time when you were successful and pleased with your performance.
  • Review previously completed tasks.
  • Think of how good it will feel to get accomplish the task.
  • Contact a friend or colleague as a cheerleader to begin the tasks.
  • Reread any instructions, directions, or standards.
  • Set a small goal to start.
  • Engage in a warm up activity: listen to music, look at a cartoon, read something humorous,
  • Engage in an energizing activity: jumping rope, dance, or stretch for a few minutes and then begin to work.

Remember too, that motivation is not a one-way street when it comes to productivity. The satisfaction you gain from being productive can propel you to start and keep going. Therefore, just beginning on small part of a task can be self-reinforcing and energizing. Motivation rises as you see small steps accomplished so keep track of your progress using simple checklists.

Benefits of Positive Motivation:

Productivity is one benefit from positive motivation, but there are other benefits, such as:

  • Better morale,
  • Lower absenteeism,
  • Higher retention rates and
  • Improved bottom-line results.

All of these contribute to a company’s ability to gain and maintain their competitive edge—especially during uncertain times.


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