Motivation is more than a pep talk.

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Have you ever held a pep talk for your employees only to discover a short boost in morale and effort? Why can’t they just produce in the pace you know they can perform at? Well it’s more to it.

I like to define motivation as an engine.

First of all, let me illustrate where I want to go:

ptm = Pep talk moment.

The motivation engine. (Mogine?)

Ignition.
The ignition is basically the pep talk, this is what you use to start the engine. The better pep talk, the better chance of starting the engine. If you’re the one holding a pep talk use visuals: Today I threw a basketball at a co-workers forehead, proving my point; I want people who can catch the ball. Today the ball was a symbol of a challenge. Believing he would actually catch the ball was a mistake. I did apologize.

Fuel.
I believe strongly that we all need to add knowledge, abilities and values to ourselves to stay motivated. The learning human is deeply anchored in my theories about management. If you can keep adding new skills, not necessary job related, you will find it easier to keep motivation up.

Throttle.
The pedal to the metal. By having the abilities to set goals and designing your own roadmap, it is much easier to have a certain pace. You must feel that you are moving forward to keep motivation high. Read this post from the blog; Slow Leadership, about The Dangers of Setting Yourself Goals. As with driving a car in real life, high speed might kill you.

Breaks.
This is what slows many people down. What will my friends think? What will my family think of this and that? Obstacles caused by fear. I cannot do this, my mom don’t want me to. I might get hurt. My friend thinks poems are stupid. If you want to keep your motivation high you must overcome your fears. At my job, everybody is allowed to be the best if they want to.

Oil
All engines need oil. So do the motivational engine. The oil is reflection, the ability to take a step back and look at where you’re at. How do you feel? Need a walk in the park? What will make you happy right now? What have you done lately that you are proud of?

The emergency number to some garage on a sticker in the front shield.
This is the phone number to you coach, or to your boss or maybe to your best friend or other people you find inspiring. This person should know about your efforts and be positive about them. Do not spill your problems upon someone that is negative, they will make sure that your right, it is not going well right now.

The turbo injection intercooler
Ok, I will not pull the engine theme to far… But would love to hear about more motivational engine parts. Please do leave some in the comments if you got some, maybe I will be able to create some kind of “mogine” illustration.

A last word from the mechanic
I absolutely think it is more to motivation than just a pep talk. If you are the one to motivate others, plan what you want to achieve, share your skills and listen to find out what fuel you should recommend. Our team is drilled on “catching the basketball” and whenever challenges rise to the surface they jump right on it. Our team is a customer care support center in the Telecom business. But if the board decides to sell cement I bet that our team would say; “Great! Bring it on; we are going to be the best cement sellers ever!

If you on the other hand are looking for motivation, try to learn something new, find a hobby or achieve a new skill at work. As soon as you succeed with it, share your knowledge, then you will feel the joy of motivating others by adding fuel to their mogine, and you have advanced to the next level.

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