Get out of my way – I’m trying to get work done!

Do you find yourself frequently frustrated at work? Frustration usually occurs when you have motivation, or at least energy, to put towards something and it is being blocked.

Sometimes it is because you want to say something, but feel as though you don’t have a voice. Other times it is because there are too many interruptions to your work. This frustration quickly shifts to the curse of demotivation, which is when we really have to dig deep to get back on the horse and start being productive again.

Here is a list of common demotivators. See how many you have encountered in the past week:

Unrealistic time frames

When a manager, customer or co-worker throws a piece of work at you when you are already overloaded it is quite difficult to deal with. When they combine it with an unrealistic time frame expectation it can be enough to push you over the edge.

Negative feedback

Everyone makes mistakes, that much is true, but even when it is warranted, negative feedback can stop you dead in your tracks. There is a lot of effort required to take a deep breath, to turn it into a constructive learning experience and to then return to your best.

Moody, negative people

Do you sit near a complainer? It can be an arduous, difficult thing to deal with, especially if it happens frequently. Work can be challenging enough without having someone constantly dragging down the mood and energy of the office, especially if it is your manager. It’s like working under a dark cloud and is a very common reason for leaving.

No recognition/acknowledgement

Sometimes it’s the lack of something that can be demotivating. When you work thanklessly it is so difficult to continue putting in your best effort. As humans we need validation and it can make such a difference when someone says thanks or lets us know they appreciate our work. The absence of this recognition can be really draining.

Lack of clear direction/continual changes

Working with an ever-changing set of goals and aims is decidedly challenging when you are putting in a huge effort. To see it go to waste because circumstances suddenly change, without warning, makes one question why they should bother putting in the effort next time around.

Lack of challenge

Going through the motions – it’s what you see people do when they consider their job to be too easy. They stop thinking creatively, stop putting in the hard effort they are capable of and lose a lot of excitement. Strange to think that some people need more work (or at least more variety, more of a stretch), but it can really overcome a serious demotivator.

Poor pay

“I don’t get paid enough to be doing this” is a common catch-cry of those that have lost motivation. Often it’s warranted, when you see increased demands on someone without the increased pay. It is also a commonly cited reason for leaving a company, and is often held in fairly high importance because it is clearly quantified and less subjective than other measures of perceived worth.

Bad environment

Some cultures or office environments are seriously demotivating. Whether it involves a lot of pressure, poor management, negative or selfish environment or just adverse economic conditions it can be really hard to produce your best work in a bad environment.

PLEASE TAKE OUR SURVEY – What do you consider to be the most powerful demotivator for yourself?

What is your current biggest demotivator:

1. Unrealistic timeframes
2. Negative feedback
3. Moody, negative people
4. No recognition/acknowledgement
5. Lack of clear direction/continual changes
6. Lack of challenge
7. Poor pay
8. Bad environment
9. A big presentation I have to do
10. ……………? (your own)

Click here to vote.

While most material around motivation looks at what you can do internally to become more positive and productive, it can also be very worthwhile to talk to your manager and team to discuss removing or limiting the demotivators that hold everyone back.

Eve Ash will be presenting a half-day workshops at AIM in Melbourne Thursday, November 29 on Presenting with Impact. SmartCompany readers are invited! Ask about our special 25% discount!


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