Motivation Or Inspiration?

If you complain about your team and their performance, you have nobody to blame but yourself. They are your responsibility, and they are in exactly where you have led them to.

What path have you led your team down so far? How happy are you with your performance as a leader? How happy are your team? How are they doing?

The ability you have to lead your team is a direct reflection of your team, and their desire to achieve results. It is also a direct reflection of how willing they are to follow you, because they want to. How your team are performing is a direct reflection of your ability to inspire, and motivate them to perform at their best.

1. When You Look At Your Team, What Do You See?

Do you see yourself in every team member? When you look at your team, it is like you are looking in the mirror back at yourself. What you are looking at is a direct reflection of your performance as their leader.

How often do your team support you? If they don’t support you, what are you doing wrong? How much are your team growing? If they’re not growing, what are you doing wrong? How excited are your team about their own, and the organisation’s future? If they are not excited, what are you doing wrong?

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How do they solve their own problems? If they don’t solve their own problems, what are you doing wrong? How motivated are they to do the right thing, and make things happen? If they are not motivated, what are you doing wrong?  How well do the team work together as a unit?

If they don’t work well together, what are you doing wrong? How much do your team respect you? If they don’t respect you, what are you doing wrong? How much do your team trust you? If they don’t trust you, what are you doing wrong?

2. How Are You Growing Your Team?

If you want to be a highly effective leader, then you MUST grow and develop your team. The place to start with this is, start wherever they are NOW.

If you inherited the team you are leading, or you have picked the team yourself, this should not matter. The team are your responsibility. It is your responsibility to lead, and develop them to be their best.

I have worked and spoken to lots of managers who are always upset with at least one or two members of their team. They think it is not their responsibility to take care of them, and develop them.

I like to ask them “What leadership books are you reading, or videos are you watching?” The answer I usually get from that question is “I don’t need to read leadership books or watch videos.”

They are too proud, and don’t think they need any leadership training. When actually, from my experience with them, they need the training more than anyone else.

The real issue is not that they have or have not had the training, or need the training. The issue is that they are not inspired to lead or develop themselves. If a person is not inspired to lead or develop themselves, then how can they be inspired to lead and develop their team?

This is a sign of a weak leader. It is a sign that their superiors are weak leaders too. In fact it is a sign that there is weak leadership all the way to top of the organisation.

If the leader of the organisation was a highly effective leader, then their influence would filter through to the leadership team. The influence of the leadership team would then filter through to the rest of the organisation.

In most organisations, if there is a leadership issue with a front line team and their manager, it is usually fuelled from a leadership issue that came from the top.

3. How Do You Inspire Yourself?

A highly effective leader is so secure that they can inspire themselves from within to lead, and develop themselves. They take full responsibility for doing so. They do not use the excuse of blaming their leader, or their team.

No matter how their own leaders behave, a highly effective leader has the full responsibility to inspire their team to get things done, and achieve great results. If you cannot do that, and you start to blame others, then you are not performing as a highly effective leader.

If you want your results to change and improve, then you need to TAKE ACTION. For you to take action, then you need to be motivated. Hopefully, from reading this article I am motivating you to want to take action, and you are excited for what your future results will be.

However, motivation is external and comes from somewhere else. If you are willing to take the right amount of action, and go the extra mile, then you need something more than motivation.

What you need is INSPIRATION. As I have said earlier, inspiration comes from within, it is about you and nobody else. By reading this article, hopefully I will motivate you to want to be inspired. If it does, then the article is doing its job. But once I have done that, it is up to you to get inspired. I cannot do that for you.

The process of motivation, and inspiration started with me by writing this article to motivate you. But, it ends with you to be inspired. My intention for this article and my other articles was to motivate you to become a better leader.

I also want you to become inspired to want to do the same with the teams that you serve. If you can do that, then you will get all the credit, not me. This is all about you.

You will deserve the credit if you can inspire others to become leaders. But, it is your decision to want to be inspired to do that. I cannot make that decision for you.

I want to help you to become a star in your organisation, and feel good about yourself. I also want you to feel good about your team, and your leadership. The more you stand out among the crowd, the more you will feel inspired to grow and develop as a leader.

4. How Do You Inspire Others?

If you make the decision to help others become leaders, then make a start by helping them to feel good. Help them stand out among the crowd. The more you do this, the higher you will climb up the leadership ladder, and the better you will feel for it.

If you cannot inspire yourself to take action, then you will not be able to inspire your team, or anyone else to take action. Inspiration starts with you, and how you are feeling. So, it is very important that you are feeling good, and positive to be inspired.

If you cannot do this, then you will never be able to motivate your team. A leader who cannot motivate their team to take action, has nobody else to blame but themselves. It has nothing to do with the team.

Throughout my career, I have worked with a lot of supervisors and managers, and most of the time when they are unmotivated it’s because things aren’t going well. So, how do you change that? You make the decision to take responsibility for why things aren’t going well.

You then start to work on yourself, to lead yourself, and to develop yourself. Believe me, when you start to do that, you will feel inspired to motivate, and inspire your team to do the same. Then the natural progression from that is, things start to go well. But, it all starts with you, and your decision to work on yourself.

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The decision to work on yourself, and develop yourself must not be a onetime thing. You must be motivated to inspire yourself, to work on yourself EVERY DAY. No matter how big or small, you must continue to work, and develop yourself every single day.

When you have finished reading this article, don’t stop there. Read more of my articles, watch my videos, listen to audios, watch webinars, attend seminars, attend lunch n learns, start a mastermind group.

Basically, do anything and everything you possibly can to work on yourself every day, and you will be inspired to inspire others to do the same.

Make your responsibility to help someone learn. If they are learning through you, then you are also learning.

I welcome hearing how this post has influenced the way you think, the way you lead, or the results you have achieved because of what you’ve learned in it. Please feel free to share your thoughts with me by commenting below.

Check out my other articles by Clicking HERE

All the best,

Tom (LeadGrowInfluence)

20 thoughts on “Motivation Or Inspiration?

  1. Hi Tom,

    Thanks so much for this article! It was very informative and a great reminder to me as a leader that I need to be paying attention to how I’m interacting with my team. This article has definitely served as a motivation to me to make sure I am taking action every day and leading by example! I love the section on growing your team- it can be easy to get stuck in being irritated with your team rather than taking the opportunity to help them grow!

    Thanks for sharing and stay safe!

    1. Hi Marlena,

      Thank you for your comment and your kind words. It’s great that you found the article helpful, and that you are going to take action on what you are learning.

      If you need any help with what you are taking action on, or you need any advice then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  2. great point on if you want to inspire others, you must be able to inspire yourself first, and prove to be someone that can lead, that others want to follow your example.

    I feel like a lot of people always forget the INNER portion of that equation, and try to make the changes they want to see in others, without actually LIVING those changes in their own life, first.

    Thanks.

    1. Hi Seth,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased that you found the article valuable.

      Being the change you want to see in others is exactly how to lead your people, by example. If you cannot set the example then nobody will follow you, so well said.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  3. You’ve hit the point there. Pride and ego have always been the undoing of many great leaders. I’ve paid the price of having pride standing in the way of my team. While I’m now not running a company, I have a totally different perception of what being a leader is all about. A true leader inspires and guide.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Kenny

    1. Hi Kenny,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found the article helpful.

      Thank you for being so honest too, and well done in changing your perception.

      If you need any further help or advice on your leadership then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  4. Thank you for sharing this article!

    Really needed the motivation with everything that’s been happening.

    Keep up the great work 🙂

    1. Hi Christina,

      Thank you for your comment and I’m really pleased the article helped you with your motivation.

      Go through my other articles to gain even more motivation.

      All the best,

      Tom

  5. Thank you,

    I feel the most difficult part of being a leader is being able to motivate and inspire your team, but you have provided so many awesome tips on how to do this effectively. I am going to bookmark your article for my own guide, and I thank you again for all your help with managing my own team

    Jeff

    1. Hi Jeff,

      As ever, thank you for your comment. It’s great that you constantly find my articles valuable.

      Inspiring your team is essential for a leader to be able to do. When we know how, we can keep doing it.

      If you need any further advice to help you with your team then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  6. Wonderful article and so true! If someone learns through us, we learn and grow. It is not easy to inspire others, but you just inspired me with your article. Thank you so much. I am a teacher and will implement what you just taught me. Also when interacting with colleagues this is super interesting. You can only inspire when you are inspired! And you are on fire.
    Thank you for sharing

    1. Hi John,

      Thank you for your comment. I’m so happy that the article inspired you, hope it helps you with your students and colleagues.

      If you need any help with implementing what you have learned then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  7. Hi Tom,

    Oh my, I’ve just had a light-bulb moment.

    The sector I worked within, always led to me inheriting my team, and I typically had one or two, let’s term them “bad apples” (the use of this terminology probably goes a long way to explain my failings).

    I felt as though I did try to inspire myself (I absolutely love your explanation of motivation/inspiration – external/internal respectively), but I failed miserably.

    I became so focused on working to people’s strengths rather than trying to develop them, I feel I lost (pushed) these members of the team without giving them the leadership they deserved.

    Have you ever had members of the team you were upset with or that you felt didn’t quite fit in?

    I would love to know how you went about “inspiring” yourself.

    Partha

    1. Hi Partha,

      Thank you for your comment. I’m really pleased that you found the article inspiring.

      Thank you for sharing your story. As long as you learn from those times you think you have failed, you will still be on the right path.

      I inspire myself by reading, listening or watching motivational materials. I do this daily, and then when I am with my team, I try to inspire them by helping them and coaching them.

      I’ve definitely had members of the team who didn’t quite fit in, and it’s got to the point where I have had to remove them after I had exhausted all my development options. If a person just doesn’t want to be there, then they must go somewhere that they want to be. It’s tough but if they do not want to be helped, then you are actually helping them by removing them.

      Hope this helps.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  8. This is a great article, I agree that everything starts by working towards bettering yourself, and to me finding inspiration can come from the most simplest things like looking at a successful picture on Facebook. I’m inspired right now just after reading this post, very beneficial.

    Peace & Positivity,

    Joshua

    1. Hi Joshua,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you found the article inspired you.

      If you need help working on bettering yourself, or in any area of your leadership and influence then please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  9. The questions you pose are questions any leader should ask and answer honestly.
    Good leaders command respect, poor leaders try to demand respect and in so doing lose the respect of their team.
    This is a great article and one I shall be referring to again in the future.
    Regards
    Rick

    1. Hi Rick,

      Thank you for your comment. It’s great that you found the article helpful.

      Commanding and demanding respect are two very different things, just like you said. To command respect, we must first be the respectful ones.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

  10. Fantastic, I really enjoyed that! I especially liked the bit “If you inherited the team you are leading, or you have picked the team yourself, this should not matter. The team are your responsibility. It is your responsibility to lead, and develop them to be their best.” So true. People don’t leave bad companies, they leave bad leaders.

    1. Hi Dan,

      Thank you for your comment. Really pleased you enjoyed the articles.

      You are absolutely right, people do leave bad leaders. I have had my fair share of bad leaders, and I have left them.

      Keep returning, keep engaging and keep leading.

      All the best,

      Tom

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