Comfortable in terms of inherent talents and skills and contribution to the team:
“John, you are a tremendous asset to our team and we could not have achieved this without you!”
Uncomfortable in terms of challenging the employee, assigning new responsibilities, and delegating decisions to him/her:
“Mary, I want you to take over this key account and its budget responsibility as of today!”
The former is a form of recognition and appreciation of the employee’s contribution and value and is a great motivator.
The latter is where growth takes place. If you want to foster your employees’ development and growth, you have to deliberately push them out of their comfort zone. Good leaders recognize the potential of their employees and create the right environment to allow it to unfold.
Do this consistently and you’ll have happy and productive employees.