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Friday
May142010

Push or Pull

Experience has led me to believe that the success of any organization, church, or group is having high morale because people are motivated and glad to be working there. One of the skill sets that every leader needs to develop is motivating people to perform at their highest level of competency.

Many of us have done business with unmotivated people in low-morale organizations who were only there for the paycheck and cared neither about the company nor the customer.


In the 50’s then-president Eisenhower, sharing his philosophy of leadership with a subordinate, put a small piece of string on his desk. He then pushed it as the listener watched the string get bunched up and move nowhere. Then he pulled the piece of string and it moved quite easily.  There are two main ways to motivate those whom you lead:


The Push Method:  This method is designed to stimulate action through fear, threats and harassment. You manipulate. This method begins with the premise that people are lazy, unmotivated and need a swift kick in the rear to get them moving and performing up to expectations. So we bribe and verbally “beat” them into action. The fact is that a pat on the back goes a lot further than a kick in the rear. Which bring us to the second method.

 
The Pull Method:  The Pull Method assumes the best about people--that they really want to work, contribute and make a difference. If those we lead are properly shepherded, affirmed, listened to and verbally and tangibly appreciated for their efforts, they can persevere and perform well even the most difficult and challenging of tasks and responsibilities. We pull people along by caring and holding up a vibrant vision to which they can contribute.
 
Are you a push or pull leader? Do you lead through motivation or manipulation?


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