How to re-ignite passion in your team

As a leader, you have great power to rekindle passion in your team.  Sometimes it is not your team with the problem it is you. Through your actions and words, you can get an attitude shift and behavior change in the team. As pointed out by Tony Robbins,

“People are not lazy, they simply have impotent goals-that is, goals that do not inspire them.”

If you get to know how to inspire your team, you can still achieve greatness. Here are a few powerful ways you can sparkle passion in your team.

  • Appreciation is key

A global study done in different companies’ shows that firms that are constantly appreciating their employees showed a 25% increase in their earnings per share over a period of one year. It is clear that appreciated employees provide great work and are willing to remain at their current organization for a longer period

It is natural for people to do more when they are appreciated. However, many leaders tend to think that they appreciate their employees more than they think. This is referred to as the appreciation blind spot.  In such a case a leader will have thoughts of appreciation which are not visible in actions.

As a leader, be prepared to show more appreciation physically.  If you are not praising your people verbally, they are not receiving any appreciation from anyone. Showing appreciation is a matter of action.

Appreciation has been shown to bring out the greatest passion in people.

Appreciation reinforces the things that you want to be done more often. It also energizes the person to do better. Further, it shows that as a leader you care about your team members actions. 

Appreciate the people you lead. Be sincere and specific. Avoid saying things like “good job.” Further, avoid overpraising as people will notice. Thoughtfully explain why you appreciate the specific member of your team and their contribution and do this often to team members who show effort. In addition to offering sincere appreciation, here are a few more ways to appreciate your team members.

  • Give personalized gifts
  • Provide financial rewards such as quarterly bonuses, gift certificates, attendance bonuses
  • Ask your coworkers out for a meal or order them lunch
  • Bring in surprises o the office such as homemade cookies
  • Give opportunities for advancement
  • Demonstrate passion

If you are not passionate, your team will not catch the vibe. Emulate the passion you want to see in them. Passion can be infectious. For instance, if you stay around people who play soccer, you might find yourself playing soccer soon and loving the game.

In the same way, your team is likely to be enthusiastic if they see the enthusiasm in you. If you are not passionate about the mission and the people you lead know that you are failing the team. You are better of finding something you are passionate about and pursuing it relentlessly. 

  • Intimately connect with your team

It is clear that you need your team members if you want to achieve anything. Intimate connections in a team allow people to feel a sense of belonging.

One way you can create such intimacy is to have team activities which the team can perform together to get the feeling of unity. You can also find time to celebrate employee’s personal achievements such as an engagement or graduation of your team member.

Make time for that company lunch or a team member’s birthday party and invite other colleagues as well.  Additionally, rather than giving each person a task you can pair two people or have a group of team members perform the task. This leads to professional intimacy and rekindles passion.

  • Get to know your team members passions and motivating factors

Getting to know your people is important. Get to know their passions and what motivates them. Get to know them on a personal level. Know their hobbies, goals, and talents. Here are a few ways that can help you to get to know your teammates better.

  • Be approachable and friendly. Make it clear that people can come to you for both personal and professional matters.
  • Encourage individual as well as team development since a team is as strong as its weakest link
  • Give support to your team when they are in need this allows them to know you are dependable
  • Avoid killing the passion of your employees

As John Maxwell points out some leaders have the tendency to become too focused on building their team’s passion that they stifle the team’s freedom and creativity.

Allow your team members to be in charge of their responsibilities. Do not micromanage; rather trust them to perform their roles. Additionally, allow your people to offer their ideas and creativity in projects and operations that relate to them. Further, ensure you have clear and result oriented goals. Make clear what you expect from your team members so that they can they can work towards it. If you are not clear, they will be unmotivated as there are no goals to meet.

  • Raise the bar constantly

If you do what you have always done you will get what you have always gotten.” Tony Robbins

The easiest way to kill your team passion is to allow for complacency. Talented employees become bored where mediocrity exists. Challenge your team to become better every day. Here are ways to avoid complacency in the workplace

Stay on guard – As a leader, ensure you energize and engage your team. You are the inspiration the team needs. If you are passionate about the business your team, will follow suit.

Remind others of the mission and the goal – Remind your team of the goal at hand. They will easily see how their behavior affects the achievement of the team goals.

Avoid routines – Repetition can bring complacency. Do not give the same task to one individual all the time. Try to let the others do the task too. You can also add some variety to a person’s responsibilities or let them shadow a more experienced employee. As a leader, you should also mix up how you give feedback and instructions. Add a variety so that your team does not take your instructions or feedback as just another routine address you are giving.

Encourage a learning culture – Providing training and coaching is a perfect way to ensure your employees feel engaged. Further, provide development opportunities to ensure they are continuously learning.


A few of these ideas may seem like basic leadership 101 but you would be surprised as to how many leaders are actually taking the time out to invest in these activities – predominately because they see it more as a chore than an investment. But what if I was to say that little changes in the way you treat your staff could increase your bottom line?

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