The reason your team isn’t fully engaged is you aren’t fully committed to them. They know, you’re dedicated to them only so long as their performance pleases you. They know organizational interests come first, theirs don’t. They know you’re playing hide-n-seek with opportunities, pay raises, and promotions to manipulate them.
Always place the best interests of employees first, always.
Let everyone on your team know their interests are your interest. Dedicate yourself to enhancing their career. Know where they want to go and help them get there. If their interests aren’t feasible, make it known. Playing games with people is dishonest and manipulative.
You can’t lead or manage people if you don’t know where they want to go. Managers who don’t know the personal goals of their team use carrots and sticks to motivate and manipulate. It’s the only option. They resort to things like, “I sign your paycheck so do what I say.”
You can manipulate but you can’t control. Successful managers don’t try to control people. They simply help people get where they want to go.
Unreservedly dedicate yourself to helping everyone on your team succeed. This means their success must align with organizational success. When it doesn’t align, help them find a place within your organization where it does or help them find a new organization.
Managers who aren’t fully dedicated to enhancing the people around them can’t be fully trusted. When push comes to shove, they’ll choose selfish interests; they’ll cut others down. The heart of trust is the conviction that you’ll always act in my best interests.
Channel the passion you feel for your mission, organization, or project toward the people you manage; serve them. Their success is your success. Convince them you’re fully on their team and they’ll give you all they’ve got.