Human beings have integrated a custom that very few realize, the one known as the "law of minimum effort". In nature, the conservation of energy is a priority, if more energy is consumed than what is replenished, death will be something guaranteed in the future, a thing that every animal understands by instinct and that we follow as well. By this exact rule is why fat and glucose are very welcomed to eat, we crave this type of food even though we have become more sedentary.
If this same concept is brought to the work environment, we will clearly see something in our day to day, where employees work barely to receive a salary, seeking results with the minimum and indispensable, but then how come not all employees are the same? Why do we find people who give more than what is requested?
Here is when motivation enters the fight, pushing us to achieve things above the expected, determined by a path of self-knowledge. It is not enough to simply see motivational images or feel a little envy / admiration for what others can do, but it has to be something that touches our core. If the motivation is not true, the effort will not last.
Apart from the motivation to break this barrier, a help system is necessary since it is temporary. There is a phrase that says "Being motivated is not something that can be maintained, it's like being clean. That is why it is recommended to practice it daily. " What things can we do to maintain and rekindle motivation?
Think on the things you want to achieve (be it losing weight, learning another language, playing an instrument, saving for a trip)
Take that goal and put a realistic deadlines according to the tools that one has (we can’t expect to lose 20 kilos in a month, not even 10 kilos if we don’t have time to go to the gym)
Write the goals and put them in a place where we can see them daily (even better if you draw a picture envisioning them with you in it)
Celebrate the small achievements of your efforts (if you want to keep the fire, you have to throw some sticks)
Talk with your friends about the things you want to achieve so that they can ask about it and motivate you (you may even recruit some people)
All these things that I just mentioned, changing some words, are things that can be applied as a leader with your employees with whom you work to be able to fight against the law of minimum effort. Reaching out, having a time to talk with them one on one and define what are they aiming to achieve and want to go is vital. Not only will you be able to know what motivates your employees, but you will be able to generate a feeling of loyalty, of belonging, that communication is fluid and there is an interest. They will know that someone is listening to them and if you manage to align the objectives of the company with those of your workers, they will give more than expected.
They will always be required to achieve more than expected, pressure and stress are common today, and to achieve those goals, getting the employees to give more, they need to know that they can get more.
Nowadays the energy value of the meals are no longer vital because they are easy to obtain, now it is the time when the emotional value of the things we want to reach takes priority, to satisfy our heart, not so much the stomach.
If you only offer a salary, the law of minimum effort will reign in the company, if you offer to be able to grow and leave a mark, they will give more of themselves.
So, what are you doing today to empower and motivate your employees to fight against this law?