Motivation can not be taught, it can only be inspired. For this reason, I would rather have one individual that is internally motivated with little experience over ten professionals that lack drive. The world in which we live is filled with people that promise 10 step plans to motivate those who refuse to be motivated. Additionally, companies spend large percentages of profit for the sole purpose of keeping a sales force motivated, and on and on the cycle goes.
I am convinced the problem is not a lack of motivation, but a lack of inspiring work. People desire to be game changers. They desire their life as well as their work to matter…. to somehow make a difference. The desire to matter does not come from some external ideology or corporate tag line, but rather it is born in each of us from the day we take our first breath until the moment we take our last. It is something internal, not external. Motivation is temporary, Inspiration is eternal.
Many leaders have bought into the idea that you can somehow motivate inspiration! They do this by rallying the troops and pushing people to limits far beyond any healthy boundaries all for the sake of desiring something inspiring to happen. This has created a culture of hype, with little substance or meaning. The product of trying to motivate inspiration is do more, be more, try harder. This leaves people feeling inadequate and under an elusive goal that always seems to never be achievable.
A much better way to approach people is not by pushing or even pulling them, but rather by inspiring them to something greater. Nothing pulls people out of mediocrity quicker than the inspiration found through the recognition of our meaningfulness in the grand scheme of the greater story! Possibly a better approach to loyalty and motivation would be to inspire people rather than demand from them. In what ways have you communicated their significance in the story of life change? The world doesn’t need another manager trying to motivate. The world needs a leader willing to take a risk and live life on an adventure that could possibly change the world forever! When a leader does this, they will not have to demand allegiance or motivation, they will have to turn people away from desiring to be a part of the meaningful story that is being written.