Monday, May 04, 2009

Motivating Geeks... And non-Geeks Part II

In How to motivate Geeks... And non-Geeks I talked about not de-motivating by getting the basics wrong.

So, time has passed and you've got the basics nailed, your hygiene factors are suitably hygienic, where do you go now?

Well, now comes the motivators: Respect, Truth, Openness, Trust, Responsibility, Recognition, Achievement and Growth.

I learnt some of these the hard way, like the time when I used to make computer games and I was technical lead on a new PS3 development, I told a developer who'd been programming since the ZX Spectrum days how he should go about finding and fixing a bug.

He sturnly replied, "Yes, I know!"

My comment - at the very least - broke the Resposibility and Recognition rules. And probably the Respect rule too.

There's a common misconception that salary is a motivator. This is wrong. A decent salary is required to stop people worrying, and you won't be motivated unless you have enough money to pay the bills, but an increase in salary is not equal to an increase in motivation.

Be honest with your staff, give them responsibility and then trust in them to do a good job. Share with them how the company is doing, ask them how they're doing. Tell them the truth.

Then, and only then, will they really excel.


Tom Gaulton said...

"He sturnly replied, 'Yes, I know!'"

I'd love to know who that was :) I'd say he broke more of the rules than you did in that encounter, particularly as the senior.

Ian Hickman said...

Tom, thanks for joining the party.

I'm not saying who it was, but I think he must have been annoyed at my patronising comments!