June 13, 2005

Good day, team,

The coach’s challenge this week is about engaging in your work and finding the energy with which to do it. Studies show that the average person puts only between 25 percent to 40 percent of available energy and ability into his or her work.

This percentage may be shocking, but time and time again, studies show that we could all improve our level of engagement on the job. There’s nothing more gratifying than working for or with someone who’s energized and always ready, willing and able to serve the customer. Each of us struggles with the same things: how to get all the work done, how to think of new and better ways to do things, how to improve our performance, etc. But when it comes to figuring out how to increase our energy on the job, we often fall short of solutions.

Here are some ways to increase your level of engagement and help your team do the same.
1) Get involved in the activities in front of you. Be present for what you’re doing in the moment.
2) Take ownership for your responsibilities and results.
3) Know where you have power and where you don’t. Stay involved where you can make the greatest difference and are most empowered.
4) Keep your network alive and well. Know who you’re affiliated with and continue to keep the energy flowing between you.
5) Understand what you’re most competent at. Leverage your strengths and don’t be afraid to face your weak spots.
6) Give yourself credit for your achievements. Find ways to reward yourself for a job well done.
7) Don’t be afraid to ask for recognition or to give it. Simply recognizing where we add value is often its own reward.
8) Make the connection between what you do and who you are. A job that has no meaning for you is the wrong job.

When managing teams, you can increase energy and engagement by giving your team the authority to make decisions and act upon them. Don’t forget to recognize all the different phases the team is going through, regardless of how smooth things are. Be alert to signs that the team needs additional coaching when times are tough. When things are going well, let everyone be involved in the rewards and recognition. Team members usually know better than anyone else what motivates them.

Try increasing your energy level this week by using some of these suggestions to re-engage in your work. In the words of Harry S. Truman, “I found that the men and women who got to the top were those who did the jobs they had in hand, with everything they had of energy and enthusiasm and hard work.”

Have a great week!


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