While on the one hand work serves different purposes for different people, there are some things which are true for everybody who works, regardless of who they are and what they want.
The most important of these is that everybody likes to feel valued.
And this fact doesn’t just extend to cover the workplace. It is true of human beings in general.
We all like to feel valued.
You know it. I know it. In fact, pretty much everybody knows it. The problem is, we frequently forget it!
This causes two problems.
The first problem is that people come to feel undervalued and unappreciated. They think that no one values them or the work they do. This can lead to resentment and frustration. Inevitably, this causes people to feel demotivated.
The second problem is that we miss out on one of the simplest possible ways in which to motivate others! All we need to do is tell the people we work with that they are doing a good job, that we value their contribution and that without them things would not run as smoothly.
It really is that simple. To motivate people, show them that they are valued.
As an aside, it is worth pointing out two things:
1. False praise can be spotted a mile off. Always praise people and their work genuinely.
2. Don’t wait for opportunities to show people they are valued. Just do it.