All posts by Liz Stincelli

Things That Motivate Employees More Than Money-Guest Post by Fretty Francis

A bigger motivation than money is hard to believe, but it does exist. The kick that we get from being applauded is priceless. Only a person with true leadership qualities can create an engaged workforce. Offering rewards and opportunities before it’s too late is really important. Nurturing your employees with the skills that they require to attain future challenges is where the success of your company lies. If your business is facing failures consistently, then it is partially your fault. In such situations the bosses certainly lack the required skills and should consider working on their own skill development before blaming the employees. After all, a true leader is the one who is humble enough to admit their mistakes. Makes sense, right?

Yelling at your staffs can never improve the situation; rather it will worsen your bond with them. Once they build a negative perception about you, it will probably never change, and this will affect their performance.

Here are 12 effective ways to bridge the gap between bosses and the employees:

  1. Honest and generous with praise works in your favor- Be specific while you praise your employee and let them know you notice their efforts in details. You should always try your best to match the praise to their efforts. This may sound like a very simple concept, but embracing their potential should be your goal, rather than just expecting positive results. Try giving regular praise to your employees based on their valuable traits and soon you will see them praising each other, which is a good sign for a happy work culture.
  2. Get rid of managers for a change- Project managers maybe too good at handling their responsibilities but sometimes it is good consider their team handling responsibilities without a leader. Empowering your staff can give you surprisingly exceptional results. Without a leader they become more responsible and will work together on an equal level.
  3. Share your ideas with them- Nobody likes to be told what to do and what not to do, and therefore it is always advisable to share your ideas and make them theirs. This is quite simple because all you need to do is ask them their views about your ideas. This will boost their confidence to approach you with new ideas without hesitation.
  4. Give equal priority to each employee- A project becomes a success when each member of the team does their bit irrespective of the hindrances. Everyone should get equal credit for their contribution and feel proud for the team as a whole. This will make them realize that everyone is important and will never let success get to their head.
  5. A surprise lunch from the boss- Simply walk up to them and invites them for lunch and surprises them. Let them know you appreciate their work and they did impress you with their dedication. If you just hired new employees then, a surprise lunch is a great icebreaker for new team members. This is an awesome way to build trust and to establish a great rapport.
  6. Criticism will kill the enthusiasm- Never judge your employees based on something that is least important. Criticism is never fun on the receiving end, especially when you do it in front of others. An underperformer needs motivation, not a mulish boss who sabotages their confidence at every level. The more you support the less they focus on clock watching and become more productive.
  7. Share rewards first and then expect- Rewards can be in any form apart from increment and this is the time you make use of your creativity. Gift them free movie tickets, free gym membership, dinner reservations, salon or spa coupons, trophies and plaques. There are so many things that you can give them and let them know that you appreciate their efforts. This will motivate them to work harder on their future projects even before you asking them to do so.
  8. Comfort matters- Does comfort matters to you? Same is the case with your employees and bunch of little things can make a big difference. A fully stocked fridge, a comfortable couch (for a short nap occasionally) or allowing them to work from home if possible are all necessary perks. Comfort at workplace is the cornerstone of productivity.
  9. Flexible working hours- Everyone has a different “productive time of the day” and expecting employees to be actively working for the entire day is unreasonable. This can only waste time, so allow them to set their working hours (with valid reason). This will definitely elevate their performance and they won’t let you down.
  10. Throw a killer company party- Show interest in celebrations, just like you are enthusiastic about starting a new project. Celebrate when your employees perform well, organize birthday parties or raise a toast if you got a big client as your big breakthrough. Never underestimate the power of celebrations, as it brings positivity.
  11. Performer of the month- Although this is a very classic method of recognition, but it is still one of the favorites among the employees. Choose some star performers as nominees in different departments (categories). Pick all the outstanding employees and reward them for their magic behind the scenes.

Final thoughts: – Great things come to those who wait, and keeping patience with your employees can be a game changer. Be a generous boss by giving your attention to employees and you can learn from them. Review and analyze your employee performance through Performance Management System and give rewards to employees who have given sweat and blood to your business.


Author Bio:

Fretty Francis is currently a Software Analyst at SoftwareSuggest. She is passionate about HR, performance management, asset management, CRM among other things. In her free time you can find her either reading about tech stuff or listening to music.

Are Their Lives Better Because of You?

“I firmly believe that if your environment works for you and your family, it translates into a better life.” — Candice Olson

I once had a friend whose mother had advised her to only date a man if her life with him would be better than the life she would have without him. I was a little taken aback those many years ago that her mother would even suggest that it was someone else’s responsibility to make her life better. I have since changed my view a little bit. I do believe that there are people who hold certain positions whose responsibility it becomes to make peoples’ lives better. Leadership is one of those positions. So, as a leader, are your employees’ lives better because of you than they would be if you weren’t their leader?

Do they have your support?

When employees do not have the support of their leader it always feels like they are fighting an uphill battle. This battle never ends and it is exhausting. Exhaustion diminishes employees’ quality of life rather than enhancing it. Give them the support they need so the constant battle comes to an end.

Do they feel safe?

Everyone has the basic need to feel safe. As a leader, it is your responsibility to provide a consistent environment where employee know what to expect. Knowing what to expect provides a level of security. If employees work in a chaotic, inconsistent environment they can never feel at ease. Provide employees with a sense of safety so they can feel comfortable in their work environment.

Can they trust you?

Lack of trust will overshadow every other step you take, as a leader, to improve the lives of your employees. Employees need to know that you are looking out for their best interests. Leadership is never about the leader and employees will quickly start to see through your façade into your hidden agendas. Make sure your words, actions, and intentions are authentic. Be transparent so that your employees never have a reason to question your motives.

Do you have respect for their lives?

It’s easy to become so focused on reaching organizational goals that you forget that your employees have lives outside of work. Their personal lives: families, friends, hobbies, and communities are just as important to them as their work lives. If you want employees to give 100% while they are in the workplace, you must provide them with ample opportunity to give 100% to their personal lives also. Everyone needs balance, even you.

Are you dedicated to serving them?

Leadership is about service, period. Your employees are not there to serve you; you are there to serve them. You can look at this as a blessing or a curse. If you see it as a curse you are in the wrong position. As a leader, you must provide guidance and support so that employees can be successful. Their success should be your main focus.

What Type of Work Environment are You Creating?

Are you creating a work environment where employees feel supported? Is there a consistency that gives them a sense of safety and security? Are you transparent and authentic so that employees have no reason to question if they can trust you or not? Do you have respect for their personal lives and the attention they need to give to matters outside of the workplace? Are you dedicated to serving your employees? These factors contribute to you, as a leader, giving your employees a better life. Is there any greater legacy you can leave than having made a positive impact on the quality of life of every employee that has worked with you?

What will you start doing today to improve the lives of your employees?



© 2017 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, and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at


Are You Undervaluing Your Employees?

“Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are.” —Malcolm Forbes

I see the impact of the above Malcolm Forbes quote in almost every organization I work with. Leaders tend to put more emphasis on what employees are not than on what they are. Are you undervaluing your employees? Here are a few of the most common causes for undervaluing what your employees really have to offer.

Trust in the wrong people

One of the biggest barriers to valuing the contributions of your employees is that you are trusting the wrong people’s opinion. You need to recognize that many managers and supervisors have their own personal agendas. Often, some of your best employees are viewed as threats or competition rather than valued assets. I know that most of you are thinking that this is not an issue in your organization; I guarantee that it is.

Poor internal systems

Another obstacle to placing the value on your employees that they deserve is poor internal processes and systems. When you have a weak link in your process, the blame for failure is often misplaced on the employees working within that system. Before you devalue the contributions that your employees are making to the success of the organization, make sure you haven’t built failure into your processes.

Lack of information

Access to information is another factor that has a huge impact on the perception of how valuable an employee is. When employees lack the pertinent information they need their deliverables are seen as deficient. I can’t tell you how many times I hear leaders tell me that their employees should be asking the questions. The problem with this thinking is that, more times than not, they don’t know what they don’t know. It is the responsibility of management to make sure employees have all of the information they need. Make sure that your employees have the information, tools, resources, and support necessary to do their jobs effectively.

Looking at the wrong things

Everyone has strengths and everyone has weakness. Would you want to be judged solely on your weaknesses? Of course not, so make sure you are not doing this to your employees. Make sure you are basing your evaluation of their value as much if not more on their strengths rather than their areas of weakness.


Employees do become less productive when they are not engaged in their work. This does not necessarily make them less valuable to the organization. The key is to figure out how to keep employees engaged and making meaningful contributions to the success of the organization. Disengagement is often the result of having little or no opportunity for professional growth and a lack of appreciation for the hard work employees are actually putting forth. Don’t start to undervalue your employees before you make sure you are keeping them engaged.

Keep Your Finger on the Pulse of Employee Value

You cannot base the value of an employee solely on the opinion of others; others have personal agendas. You cannot hold employees accountable for your poor processes and systems; make sure you build systems that work. You cannot expect exceptional work from employees who are not given the information and tools they need to do their jobs; remember, you can’t expect them to know what they don’t know they don’t know. Do not judge employee solely on their areas of weakness; you wouldn’t want to be judged on yours. And, don’t write off an employee’s value just because they have become disengaged; it’s your responsibility to offer an engaging work environment with ample opportunities for growth. As a leader, it is your responsibility to keep your finger on the pulse of employee value. Value is an individual property; it is not a determination that you can leave in the hands of others. Make sure you are valuing employees for what they are.



© 2017 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, and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at


The Daily Disciplines of Leadership

Positive reinforcement word Discipline engrained in a rock

“Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment.” — Jim Rohn

As a leader, you will have your big moments. But, great leaders are made not in the big moments, but in the daily disciplines. While there are many things that demand your focus, here are three things that need your attention daily. This daily attention will help build the bridge between goals and accomplishments.

Get real

Develop the daily discipline of being a realist. You can have pie in the sky goals all you want; the fact is, they aren’t going to happen often. Great leaders understand where they are and what is currently possible. Then, and only then, can you start building up to achieving big goals; one realistic goal at a time.

It’s not about you

Not one day goes by that your leadership is about you. Develop the discipline of being the support system for your people. What do they need? Are they lacking resources, training, or engagement? Do they need support, encouragement, or maybe just a listening ear? Make sure you are in-touch with the needs of your people on a daily basis.

Small steps

It’s the small steps you take every single day that will make all the difference in the long-run. Develop the discipline to do the small, seemingly insignificant, things on a daily basis. You can only make giant strides for so long before one of two things happen. You exhaust yourself and your people, or you find yourself so far down the wrong path that it’s extremely difficult to change course.

Build the Bridge

Get realistic about where you are, where you are going, and what it is going to take to get there. Remember that your leadership is never about you. And, discipline yourself to take the small steps every day that make a big difference over time. Build the bridge between your goals and your accomplishments by developing the daily leadership disciplines that lead to success.



© 2017 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, and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at


Why Can’t You Retain Top Talent?

“Being the best at whatever talent you have, that’s what stimulates life.” – Tom Landry


The competitive nature of today’s global economy stipulates that you have and retain the top talent in your organization. We acknowledge that to do so is as great of a challenge as it has ever been.

A recent article in USA Today highlighted how American workers are on the move. They reported that “27 percent of employees switched jobs in the 12 months ending in the first quarter according to payroll processor ADP, the most since the firm began tracking the figure in 2014.”







Courtesy: USA Today

So what is a leader to do in order to retain and recruit top talent for their organizations? We have identified several characteristics that may shed some light on why your top talent may be headed through that revolving door. We believe as you take care of these leadership issues you can build the type of team that people would want to work for and think twice about leaving. But first, why are they leaving?


Lack of clear expectations

Nothing will frustrate your top talent more than a lack of a clear set of expectations and vision. Without it, your organization is adrift and your people struggle to find their way. Employees have to fight extra hard to succeed when they do not clearly understand what is expected of them in the first place. The constant feeling that they are not performing at an acceptable level, even if they don’t know what that level is, will send top talent running for the door.

Lack of investment

Your top talent needs to know that you are totally invested in their success. The buy-in is a two-way street and it needs to be demonstrated in tangible ways that reinforce your commitment to their success. Your investment in them shows that they are valued and that you are confident in their ability to make a meaningful contribution to the organization. When top talent feels that you do not value them enough to invest your time and resources in them, they will begin to seek an employer who will.

Perceived lack of respect

The culture and morale of your organization rest on foundational leadership principles. Namely among them are trust and respect. Top talent is especially attuned to the respect or lack thereof, that you have for them. These employees have devoted much of their lives to developing the skills, knowledge, and experience that make them so valuable. If the people in your organization perceive that you do not respect them, then it only stands to reason that they will be a part of a future exit from your organization.

Lack of a clear path forward

We want to be very clear about this leadership principle. Unless your people have a clear path forward, it will be clear to them that they are in the wrong place. In his book, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John Maxwell writes, “You can find smart, talented, successful people who are able to go only so far because of the limitations of their leadership.” It could be that the top talent in your organization is leaving, not because of a lack of opportunity, but because of a lack of leadership and a clear vision as to where they are going. It is incumbent upon you as the leader to provide it.

Lack of authentic leadership

Nothing will demoralize your people or your team members more quickly than a phony leader. Besides, too much is at stake for a leader to be anything other than genuine. Authenticity is the foundation for trust. No one wants to work for a leader who cannot be trusted. If you lack authenticity, employees will start to question your motives; they will perceive that you have hidden agendas that are not in their best interests. If the top talent within your organization can’t find authentic leadership where they are, they will look elsewhere for it.

We all have the desire to succeed; we want to know that our contributions are valued and that we are making a difference. Top talent has sacrificed far too much to achieve their level of skill to compromise on the leadership environment they work in. Provide them with the clear expectations they need to be successful. Invest your time and resources in helping them achieve great things. Leave no doubt as to how much you respect and trust them and their abilities. Provide them with a clear path forward and the means to follow that path. And, be an authentic leader, someone that top talent can look up to and emulate.

Your organization can only rise as high as your top talent. Isn’t it time to start retaining those employees who have the potential to add so much value? What adjustments will you make to your leadership today?


© 2017 Doug Dickerson and Liz Stincelli



Doug Dickerson is an internationally recognized leadership speaker, columnist, and author. His books include: “Leaders Without Borders: 9 Essentials for Everyday Leaders”, “Great Leaders Wanted”, “Leadership by the Numbers”, and “It Only Takes a Minute: Daily Inspiration for Leaders on the Move”. He lives outside beautiful Charleston, South Carolina.

Email Doug at:

Follow Doug on Twitter  @DougDickersonSC and on Instagram at: DougDickerson1.