Mastery Loves (Your) Company

I know the expression is “misery loves company.” That’s true too. But if you want something that loves YOUR company and boosts your bottom line, it’s mastery to the rescue.

Mastery is another word for getting better at what we do, and it’s a HUGE motivator. And according to recent research at MIT, it’s far more important than money. That throws a lot of economists for a loop, but the good ones have to bow before the growing evidence.

When we do training, we often think in terms of a simple equation: employee + training = improved productivity. But if we really want to maximize productivity and engagement, we’ve got to notice something else that’s happening. It isn’t just the productivity that’s improving, it’s also the employee.

Training that is geared toward building skill sets is fine and dandy. But small adjustments in language and approach can underline the employee’s awareness that he or she is getting better, not just the skill. It’s the difference between saying, “We have improved our unit production numbers a lot this quarter” and saying “You have improved your skills a lot this quarter.” Underline the self-improvement, and you turbo-charge the motivation to keep improving and producing.

And what did that cost you? You hardly even had to buy a vowel.

So pull out those training programs and take a close look at the language. Does it read like an invitation to improve outcomes, or to improve people? A little time invested in the language of mastery and personal development can go a long way to meeting your company’s goals for 2011 and beyond!

Invest that time today.

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