Much has been written about motivation theory. Motivating a worker to perform at high levels has been studied since the beginning of work.
Too often, ministry organizations are content to believe that our teams are self-motivated because of their commitment to and satisfaction with being led by the Holy Spirit. Why would we need to motivate someone who works "as unto the Lord?"
The fact is leaders must be aware of the need to maintain motivation within a work team. It shouldn't be a surprise that workers "lose their why." We know, when we lose our why, we lose our way. Effective leaders distribute regular doses of "why" through motivational methods.
I'm a big fan of Frederick Herzberg and his theories of motivation. Of all the scholars and leaders I've studied, I feel Herzberg best captured the essence of motivation. He also developed early thinking on job enrichment.
The essence of his belief on motivation is that motivation can only occur in the absence of dissatisfiers. Money is not a motivator. But dissatisfaction with a paycheck may prohibit the harvest of motivation.
Herzberg said the following factors lead to dissatisfaction ...
- Company policy
- Relationship with boss
- Work conditions
- Relationship with co-workers
The factors leading to satisfaction include ...
- The work itself
It's important to note that the opposite of dissatisfaction is not satisfaction. The opposite is simply, no satisfaction. The basic theory is that true satisfaction, and therefore motivation, does not occur in the presence of dissatisfiers.
An important process for leadership is to remove the dissatisfiers from the organization. Yes, employees should be self-motivated and be able to "push-through" elements of irritation. But a leader who walks through an office and assumes the work team is highly motivated because "they love Jesus" is probably walking through the office with a bag over his head!
Jesus led his disciples as He motivated them to follow.
"I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that bears no fruit, He takes away. And every branch that bears fruit, He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. You are already clean through the word which I have spoken to you. Remain in Me, as I also remain in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it remains in the vine, neither can you, unless you remain in Me" (John 15:1-4).
Dr. Steve Greene is the publisher and executive vice president of the media group at Charisma Media and executive producer of the Charisma Podcast Network. His book, Love Leads: The Spiritual Connection Between Your Relationships and Productivity, is now available.
Leaders, Dr. Greene wants to help you understand the spiritual connection between relationships and productivity. Read his new blog, Love Leads.
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