Mediocre managers assume staff members are motivated by the same things. They assume employees learn in the same way and believe their role is to make sure employees conform to these roles.
Given everyone has unique strengths and weaknesses, it's safe to say this is ineffective leadership.
Great leaders success lies in the encouragement and appreciation of individuality.
I was a motivational speaker for a financial services conference where one of the other speakers presented her motivational talk on 3 performance styles. Only through knowing the 3 styles and appreciating individual strengths can employees really flourish.
The motivational talk unveiled the following 3 learning styles:
This performance style understands a task by taking it apart and examining it. They crave information and lots of it.
This employee needs lots of training, information and time to feel comfortable in a role. They also need to thoroughly understand a task before doing it. They tend to thrive in operational roles that are relatively stable and give them lots of time and information to prepare.
This performance style needs to see the big picture performance in advance to feel comfortable.They do not want to learn parts of the job but watch the job as a whole and understand how it works.
They learn best (not by listening or doing) by watching others
Also good at operations but need to be trained differently, by job shadowing others.
This learning style learns best through action. They cannot just watch others and listen to directions they have to learn in a hands on way.
For this employee trial and error is integral to learning and they need to figure things out on their own
The frustration others have with this performance style is they tend to be unprepared and make mistakes- as this is how they learn.
Hands on employees are best at jobs that require jumping in with both feet. Usually doers thrive in sales, physical work, training and leadership roles.
Jobs that require precision and low degree of error are not a good fit.
The motivational speaker for the financial services event suggested great leaders will attempt to understand how an employee best learns and shape the job to suite the employees needs, instead of the other way around.
My motivational talk for the financial services conference was the Nerve to Serve.