It is just math
MVP: Getting better at our work is intrinsically motivating.
Recognize and reward good work: Leaders should recognize and reward employees who contribute to the organization's success. This helps motivate employees and encourages them to continue performing at a high level.
M=V/E or motivation equals value divided by effort.
If we want people to be motivated, we need to make sure that what we are asking them to do has value, and we need to make it as easy as possible for them to execute.
Additionally, we need to think more about intrinsic motivators. Being good at what you do usually brings joy to our work. Helping people grow and excel is more valuable (and thus more motivating) than plaques and glad-handing.
Today’s intention: Pay attention to the first five people you encounter today. Think about what they value about working in your organization. If you don’t know, ask them. How can you increase V if you don’t know what V is?
MVP: Growth is not an option, and leaders should model it.
Provide opportunities for growth and development: Leaders should provide opportunities for employees to learn and grow. This can include training programs, mentoring, and opportunities for advancement. This helps employees feel valued and encourages them to stay with the organization.
ChatGPT got this one right for the most part. However…
Today’s intention: What part of your own leadership are you trying to get better at? Who else knows what your focus is?
If you want to participate in a long complex change initiative, raise your hand!
MVP: Look for the easiest, simplest, shortest solution.
I hope you are enjoying my exchanges with ChatGPT. They will continue tomorrow, but today I am taking time out to talk about simplicity.
In yesterday’s episode of The Assistant Principal Podcast I discussed how North Carlina is spending $90 million on a complex and demanding professional development program for all elementary school administrators and teachers.
Regardless of the program’s merits, this is a terrible approach.
It would be much cheaper and simpler to focus our efforts on supporting teachers who are struggling to build relationships with their kids and to manage their classrooms. It would also make an impact much more quickly.
We constantly make things more complicated than they need to be!
Today’s intention: Think about the people in your organization who are struggling the most. Identify one small step they could make towards better performance (and maybe more job satisfaction). If you could help them make that step, you would have helped your organization become better.
Can you hear me now?
MVP: Communication is critical, and consistent presence fosters strong communication.
Encourage open communication: Leaders should create an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing their opinions and ideas. Encouraging open communication helps foster trust and collaboration among team members.
A principal I work with periodically asks all her teachers and staff for feedback about the school. She asks:
This is a modification of the five-minute coaching framework, and it is so powerful for the following reasons:
Today’s intention: Try out those four questions with 1-3 people. What do you learn?
Do you see what I see?
ChatGPT gave me six ways to build organizational culture. ChatGPT may be a powerful AI, but I would not want it to be my leader! This week I will dissect some of the more problematic elements of ChatGPT’s suggestions for building culture.
MVP: Supporting people is more powerful than articulating a vision!
Imagine this… A new leader comes in with lots of energy and announces a new ambitious vision that motivates and excites everyone!
And, two years later, that leader is gone.
Communicate clear values and vision: Leaders should communicate their organization's values and vision in a clear and consistent manner. This helps employees understand what the organization stands for and how their work contributes to its success.
People before purpose! ChatGPT tells us to make the organization the focal point of the work, but in the words of Dr. Jan Osborn, “without people there is no purpose.”
Additionally, leaders should not be the ones creating the values and the vision. Strategic leaders work collaboratively to help people clarify their visions and values and then give voice to the vision and values.
Today’s intention: Think about the times you have struggled in your job, either to do it or to be happy in it. Was the problem the vision, or something else?