“We must not be content to memorize the beautiful formulas of our illustrious predecessors. Let us go out and study beautiful nature.” —Paul Cezanne
Some think that contentment is the key to happiness but, it can be the enemy of progress. Employees are happiest when they are making progress, being challenged, and growing personally and professionally. Why be content, settling for the status quo, when you can be exploring, learning, and growing? Here are three reasons you don’t want content employees.
Contentment slowly suffocates the flame of passion. Passionate employees are excited to contribute and they thrive on being part of something bigger than themselves. Passion cannot be taught, it cannot be passed on from one person to another. Passion must stem from a belief in something that is of personal value. Help your employees understand the big picture goals of the organization and then acknowledge the value that their personal contributions bring to the table.
Drive is the desire to make progress, to go further than we have gone before, and achieve great goals. When employees become content, they tend to lose their drive. Encourage employees to never be content with the status quo. Nourish their desire to contribute to the forward progress of the organization. And, give them the credit they deserve for progress made.
Everyone wants the opportunity to take on challenges, learn new things, and grow. When employees become content they lose the ambition to put forth the extra effort needed to seize opportunity. Offer employees challenges that keep their work exciting. Give them access to the resources they need to meet these challenges head-on. Invest your time and energy into helping employees become the best they can be and then reward them for their growth.
Ignite the Fire
If your employees have become content their spark has burned out. Fuel their passion. Feed their drive. And, encourage them to pursue opportunities. Acknowledge the value that they add to the organization and reward progress and growth. It’s time to ignite the fire.
© 2016 Elizabeth Stincelli
Liz Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the Founder of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations change attitudes, change communication dynamics, improve collaboration and problem-solving, engage employees, and strengthen organizational culture. Liz holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.
Learn more about Liz by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.