Leadership & Teams #04

Managing Motivation

It is not enough for targets of implementation to know what to do (information), they also have to want to do it (motivation)..

Law of Effect

Motivation is controlled by contingencies and consequences. Consequence is what we get and contingency is when we got it.

Intrinsic & Extrinsic Consequences

Rewards that we receive in exchange of outcome are extrinsic consequences. Whereas, intrinsic consequence is when reward itself is the outcome.

e.g. an instructor may teach for extrinsic consequence i.e. paycheck or because he finds it enjoyable which is intrinsic consequence.

Expectancy Theory

It’s not contingencies and consequences that motivates people, it’s the perception of contingencies and consequences.

There are 3 key perceptions that control whether or not contingencies and consequences can influence our behavior.

Expectancies: If we think we are capable of performing well enough to be rewarded.

Instrumentalities: If you think good performance will be rewarded.

Valences: If you value the reward offered. Continue reading


Leadership & Teams #03

Group Decision Making

Inclusiveness  results in better decisions than any individual can make. Using a group of decision makers to make a decision should improve decision making as

  • It results in more informed decision as more decision means more information.
  • It also means less biased decision as there are multiple perspectives.

Process Loss

It is the inability of a group to take advantage of the additional information and perspectives available in a group. There are three critical causes of process loss in groups.

  • Composition Problem
  • Participation Problem
  • Influence Problem

Composition Problem: Decision makers are often not diversity seeking; instead they rely on individuals who are like them; as a result quality of decision suffers. Decisions can be better informed when individuals reflect a diverse set of perspectives and information.

Participation Problem: A diverse group can only make a more informed decision if the group members share their unique information and perspectives.

Individuals who are included in decision making but don’t participate are Spectators.

It happens for several reasons: Continue reading

Leadership & Teams #02

Individual Decision Making

Making a Decision

Leaders face two tasks in dealing with threats & opportunities: Make & Implement decisions

Making a decision is about selecting the best possible option to get to your goals it involves:

  • Goals (Outcomes) you want to achieve
  • Options (Actions) for getting you there

Decision analysis is a systematic framework for selecting actions for getting to goals. Uncertainty makes decision-making difficult

It consists of:

  • Action Options i.e. what are the choices
  • Uncertainty (associated with each action outcome) & Probability
  • Outcomes of actions

Heuristics  allow us to makes decisions. Many times we either have to fill in the blanks when there is no information or limit considerations when there is too much information.

In process of using heuristics, our subjectivity can create bias i.e. anything based on tendencies or something that influences without us realizing it.

One such heuristic is Anchoring. It is being influenced by a reference number when estimating. For example, a person looking to buy a used car may focus excessively on the odometer reading and the year of the car, and use those criteria as a basis for evaluating the value, rather than considering how well the engine or the transmission is maintained.

Continue reading

Leadership & Teams #01

The Head And Heart Of Leadership

Agility, Threats & Opportunities

The ability to react quickly is called agility. Best leaders use their skills to make organization agile.

Managers rely on their authority to get others to obey, while leaders use their influence to get others to want to do what the organization needs them to do.

Two things can happen quickly in the business: Threats & Opportunities

Threats offer the promise of making an organization worse off if not dealt with, opportunities offer to make it better off if the advantage is taken.

Technology has changed the need for organizational agility. Business no longer can stay regional, national because of perspective suppliers and customers and competitors.

Head & Heart of Leadership

Leaders face two tasks in dealing with threats or opportunities i.e. making & implementing decisions.

Leader has two levers available to accomplish the core tasks i.e. the management of information (head) & the management of motivation (heart).

Quality of decision is always limited by ability to implement it. Therefore decisions should always be made with one eye on implementation.


Leaders often overestimate their ability to make high quality decisions without input from others. They also underestimate importance of fostering enthusiasm for implementation. Continue reading