We all know that motivation is a crucial part of teamwork. All team members must be motivated and inspired to produce the best results, primarily by their leader.

However, the trickiest part is that things that motivate people are different for all team members.

I used many tools to motivate people, but what did I find? Before any action, we, as leaders, need to know what motivates our team members. More importantly, they need to be aware of what motivates them! We know some external motivators, but internal motivators are stronger and aim right in the center.

A few years ago, I was hired as a Scrum Master to support a newly formed cross-functional team. I was aware of four different stages in team development, and I was eager to help my team reach the “high-performing team” level. To do that, I knew that setting a foundation at the beginning could make a significant difference later.

After the initial kick-off, I scheduled a “value” workshop to learn more about my new team and help them get to know each other better.

I prepared eight packs of Mng 3.0 cards, “Moving motivators,” one per team member. First, I explained what CHAMPFROGS means, and we went through every card with a short explanation. Then, we discussed the process a bit, trying to align expectations and create a common understanding.

The words are simple yet powerful in explaining some internal motivators.

C – Curiosity  (I have plenty of things to investigate and to think about)

H – Honor (I feel proud that my values are reflected in how I work)

A – Acceptance (The people around me approve of what I do and who I am)

M – Mastery (My work challenges my competence, but it is still within my abilities)

P – Power (There’s enough room for me to influence what happens around me)

F – Freedom (I am independent of others with my work and my responsibilities)

R – Relatedness (I have good social contacts with the people in my work)

O – Order (There are enough rules and policies for a stable environment)

G – Goal (My purpose in life is reflected in the work that I do)

S – Status (My position is good and recognized by the people who work with me)

Team members started ordering cards, from the most important to the least important. It was hard because, for some of them, it was difficult to choose. That was round one.

Then, I invited my team to take a look and consider reordering some cards. Surprisingly, almost everyone reordered a few cards.

“Is this your final order?” I asked. After confirmation, every team member explained the order of the motivators. It was a good discussion, and people quickly learned about each other.

What did I learn?

People can have totally different motivators. I already knew that, but I got my confirmation.

I was surprised because, for some people that I already knew, I expected a different order.

Finally, the order will change over time, and that’s fine. Just share your values with the team and be a role model for practicing them.

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