your team's motivation

Use This CAR to Drive Your Team’s Motivation

Most coaches, executives, and owners want their team to be more self-driven and internally motivated.

Who doesn’t? 

However, the measures that leaders employ are usually externally driven.

We too often defer to outside measures to help facilitate change, namely rewards (money) for good results or punishments for poor outcomes. 

A team’s motivation will increase dramatically when you use these three (3) keys! 

Have you’ve been trying to build your team’s motivation the right way?


If you are searching for more internal drive from your team, here are three metrics to examine. 

A-   Autonomy- People need to feel empowered in their position, that they can make decisions on their own and have a voice in their development. They want to feel in-control of their own path.

The Ritz-Carlton empowers their front line managers with an allowance of $2500 to handle any customer disputes on the spot instead of needing permission. 

R-  Relatedness- People want to feel a part of a team, that what they do matters, and that they are contributing to something larger than themselves. The connection amongst team members build trust and rapport and no one feels alone. (i.e., see Marriott). 

C-   Competence- People want to know that they are good at what they do. Competence is confidence. Hence, we’ll do activities and tasks in which we are competent.  Confidence breeds success.

If a team or company is lacking in mental toughness and motivation, perhaps one of these principles is off.  For example, a person may feel he/she can make decisions (High A) and is good at what they do (High C) but do not feel like part of a team or recognized for their effort (Low R).

Here are three simple ways to improve your team’s motivation.

A-  Autonomy- Have individual 1-1 meetings and regular check-ins. Ask for and get their input about what is working and/or what needs changed. People often don’t always need an immediate answer, but they DO need an acknowledgement. 

R-  Relatedness- Have functions or competitions! Internal competitions  can build the strength of a team and hanging out with one another enhances the camaraderie.

C-  Competence- Studies have shown that individuals will meet the expectations set forth by their coaches or boss. In turn, positive feedback for effort increases the internal motivation, while negative feedback may decrease one’s motivation.

These are the simple ways you can build your team’s motivation. 


Sources:  Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (1985). Intrinsic motivation and self-determination in human behavior. New York: Plenum.Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R. M. (2000). The “what” and “why” of goal pursuits: Human needs and the self-determination of behavior. Psychological Inquiry, 11, 227-268.



dr rob bell speakerDr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. DRB & associates coach executives and professional athletes. Some clients have included three different winners on the PGA Tour, Indy Eleven, University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens.