Ask the Experts - How do you effectively manage/motivate people?

How do you effectively manage/motivate people?


Dan Kupferman, CAPP
Business Development Manager

When I was a commercial operator I felt that communication was the key.  My staff knew what was expected of them, but more importantly, they knew why.  We were all working towards common goals.  I wanted everyone to see the big picture.  I talked a lot, but I also listened, and by validating and responding to staff concerns, staff became more motivated.  I tried to make staff feel valued and appreciated.   Raises and bonuses weren't always available, but positive reinforcement and words of gratitude flowed freely!.


Derek J. Kiley
WPS North America, Inc.

We generally empower our staff once adequate knowledge and training has been provided. The sense of ownership within one's work tasks tends to create plenty of motivation for employees and middle managers. We also believe in rewarding people for positive accomplishments and excellent customer service. Work pride is not a principle that is taught as much as a principle that is found.


Art Noriega
Miami Parking Authority

Complete and total intimidation and fear. Just kidding. Motivation is unique to every individual. Understanding what excites and inspires each person is the first step. Pushing the right buttons is the follow through. For some its monetary, while for others it's status. Some simply want inclusion. The difference is what makes it tricky, but if you are successful, everyone's  a winner.


James C. Anderson
Regional Sales Manager
Watson Bowman Acme Corp.

The management and motivation of people are closely inter-related and begin with the organization and manager having a well developed and thought out plan.   With an established plan, communicate the plan and goals throughout the organization and staff with clear and defined objectives and actionable items.  Measure, nurture and adjust your plans as needed in concert with your people's input and  …. reward performance.  Treat people fairly, with respect and provide them a learning environment.


Larry J. Cohen, CAPP
Executive Director
Lancaster Parking Authority

I was recently asked the difference between being a manager and a leader.  My best examples of being a leader are 1) leading by example in a positive way and not asking a staff member to do something you would not do yourself, 2) telling anecdotal stories at staff meetings from experiences that showcase their importance and impact on the operation everyday 3) truly listening to their ideas and following through to their concerns 4) giving them a pat on the back and taking a sincere interest into their life 5) sharing your vision of the future of the operation and communicating that to them and 6) mentor and support your staff as they seek to advance their own career.


Roamy R. Valera, CAPP
Vice President/Regional Manager
Standard Parking Corporation

A ton of books have been published on the subject and one that I recommend is "You don't need a Title to be a Leader" by Mark Sanborn.  I do however have my personal view:
• Set a clear vision and mission (from the top of the organization)
• Establish clear goals and objectives (everyone's buy in)
• Pull, don't push (you find yourself in the front when you pull)
• Spend time understanding the "role" others play in the organization and recognize them.


L. Dennis Burns, CAPP
Senior Practice Builder/Regional Vice President
Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc.

As a manager, I always tried to be keenly aware of my staff's inherent strengths and weaknesses and also their specific areas of passion.  I was also a firm believer that every person should have a special project for the year.  If you can align an individual's area of natural strength with something they have some real passion for, having a motivated employee is much easier.  This approach can also work in getting an employee to improve in areas where they are less strong.  For example if an employee needs to work on their presentation and public speaking skills and they have keen interest in sustainability, having them develop a internal training session on that topic will help them be more comfortable with the presentation assignment because of the degree of caring they have for the subject matter.