Ever wondered why you are not quite hitting the mark in some key area of your business or life? You have laid out the perfect plan. You have the right team in place. The resources you need to execute are available, and all should be moving forward. However, the breakthroughs are not happening, or the big opportunity is evading you. I too, have wondered like this before. The reasons could vary, depending on the situation.
A few times in my life, when I have wondered, I discovered that motivation was the common denominator. I am a highly motivated leader, and I attract motivated people to my teams. However, collectively, we can at times be misaligned in our motivations.
Recently, I led a workshop for approximately 100 leaders at a conference focused on influential leadership. My session addressed leading from any level of an organization. During my preparation, it struck me that we often have different motivations based on our levels in organizations, the scope of our involvement and a host of other potential factors.
For example, the CEO may be motivated by the net profit yielding from the organization’s product or service offering(s). At the same time, the middle manager may be motivated by getting the exposure needed from a particular product launch to propel him or her to a senior management position. While the individual contributor working on the marketing of the same launch may be motivated by winning the local marketing association award he or she may be qualified to win for leading a successful campaign.
Although these are examples, the point is that we sometimes must look at our true motivations for what we are doing. If those motivations are not in alignment with an overall mission or purpose, we can miss the mark and fall short of our goals. Also, as ethical leaders, we have the responsibility of learning the motivations of the people we lead. When we know their motivations, we can manage the alignment of individual motivators with the overall team’s goals and objectives.
If you ever wonder, look at your motivations and the motivations of the people around you.
-Alfonzo D. Alexander, Chief Ethics and Diversity Officer, NASBA Center for the Public Trust, President