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Monday, November 19, 2007


Motivation Training Videos? I'm not sure of their value, but hope Ideas and Training won't mind their trading their image for a link.

This article by Geofffrey James, "Getting Motivated: Here's How" is refreshing -- though of course I believe motivation is an internal thing, and no one can "motivate" someone else in any lasting way. We can provide information, insights, and perhaps encourage someone to connect with their passions, but we can't do it for 'them'.

Similarly, what do we do if our key employees seem to be "losing motivation". If it is an isolated situation, I would look to see if there are some external elements affecting the employee's life -- if the issue is becoming more general in the organization, the owner/CEO needs to look into him/herself. Something is wrong, clearly with the leadership and business structure. The paradox is that there many be many valid 'causes' masking the underlying real issue(s) or (more troubling) the causes set in motion a chain of events that lead to seemingly unintended consequences.

Having survived a rather major long-evolving business decline, however, I now believe you really need to be tuned into your organization's internal culture AND external market; don't rely on third-hand opinions (though consider them carefully). You have to remain in touch, and connected, and change course when you see signs of "demotivation" creeping into your environment.

1 comment:

Sonny Lykos said...

From these three paragraphs I can see you're a smart business owner, Mark. You're right. No one can motivate someone else, and can only supply factors that can/might cause the other person to become motivated about his/her position or issue.

Back when I had 26 employees I found one way was to ask for ideas. That was if it was determined the problem was not of a personal nature, but of the business.

Usually employees have ideas in the back of their head, but for one reason or another,are often not inclined to tell us about them. I would set aside time for the two of us to discuss his idea, then offer some suggestions for that person as far as researching it further with some guidance from me. i made sure they looked at the cons besides "their" pros so they were realistic, and viewed it from the perspective of business ownership.

In other cases, it was just a matter of me telling someone periodically how much I appreciated what s/he was doing for us. Some personality types need more "stroking" than others.

Sometimes instead of working with his idea, we'd have a heart to heart about his position, what he liked and disliked about it. In those cases, sometimes it turned out that the motivation was being killed by a problem that although major to the employee, was to me a minor issue to correct.

But you have the gist of it, one way or another, the underlying problem must be determined and addressed. The employer and employee both owe it to each other.

Elsewhere Mark:


And finally, scroll down to page 149 here:,M1