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Chapter from: "The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work"
Published by: Harvard Business Publishing
Published in: 2011

Abstract

Great managers deliberately create catalysts that facilitate the timely, creative, high-quality completion of their employees' work. Catalysts are critical because beyond their direct effect on the specific project at hand, they positively affect the inner work lives of employees, in turn spurring higher levels of motivation, engagement, and performance across all their work. (For example, consider an employee who has had a request for a new computer approved: the promise of the new computer affects that person's motivation before the new machine even arrives.) In this chapter, organizational behavior experts Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer introduce the seven most important catalysts you can implement as a manager, including setting clear goals, allowing autonomy, providing necessary resources, and learning from problems and successes. The chapter goes on to show how you as a leader can build a culture around this kind of support, explaining the three C's of positive company culture - consideration for people and their ideas, coordination, and communication. Based on thirty years of research and the detailed workplace diaries of employees in vastly different environments, this hard-hitting chapter shows you how to deliberately establish catalysts - and how to avoid accidentally creating setbacks - to make an enormous difference in your employees' progress and productivity. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 6 of ‘The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work.’ This chapter is excerpted from ‘The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work'.

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Abstract

Great managers deliberately create catalysts that facilitate the timely, creative, high-quality completion of their employees' work. Catalysts are critical because beyond their direct effect on the specific project at hand, they positively affect the inner work lives of employees, in turn spurring higher levels of motivation, engagement, and performance across all their work. (For example, consider an employee who has had a request for a new computer approved: the promise of the new computer affects that person's motivation before the new machine even arrives.) In this chapter, organizational behavior experts Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer introduce the seven most important catalysts you can implement as a manager, including setting clear goals, allowing autonomy, providing necessary resources, and learning from problems and successes. The chapter goes on to show how you as a leader can build a culture around this kind of support, explaining the three C's of positive company culture - consideration for people and their ideas, coordination, and communication. Based on thirty years of research and the detailed workplace diaries of employees in vastly different environments, this hard-hitting chapter shows you how to deliberately establish catalysts - and how to avoid accidentally creating setbacks - to make an enormous difference in your employees' progress and productivity. This chapter was originally published as Chapter 6 of ‘The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work.’ This chapter is excerpted from ‘The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work'.

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