The Unlimited Potential of Motivation
Decades, centuries, limitless efforts, substantial education, and billions of dollars have all coalesced and endured to attempt to explain the core of motivation. The concepts of motivation are still not completely understood because the important and necessary resources and energies are focused on the wrong solution.
Employee motivation is the difference between organizational success such as becoming part of the Fortune 500 or completely failing to end up obsolete. People are the life blood of organizations and success is determined on getting the optimal performance from your organizational workforce.
The quest for the source of motivation has been similar to the search for the fountain of youth. People have invested their whole life’s efforts in an attempt to uncover this hidden treasure and have failed to reach the final mile. Programs and systems have been created since the beginning of industrialization which have been focused on acquiring the maximum efforts of their workforce. These programs have squeezed the juice of work performance from their workers, but have thematically dragged the horse to water. Dragging does not guarantee that the horse will drink the water and in order for the horse to drink the water, the horse has to want to do it.
People are similar in this regard because no one likes to be forced to do something. The person might enact the demanded response to temporarily satisfy the external pressure, but the performance will be subpar at best, and the employee will be focusing their motivation on finding another job rather than improving their work performance for their company.
Motivation is the internal drive to do something. External forces will engender an action response, but this response will not become automatic and repetitive. The action response will always have to be mitigated by an external force, and without the external force, the action response will cease to occur. This equates to a zero value and nothing will have been gained from the process except smoke and mirrors.
This has been the outcome concerning organizational processes regarding worker motivation. Internal motivation has not been geared towards obtaining more success for the organization, but rather on obtaining the external reward that is offered for their action response. There is no drive to complete the task for the sake of completing the task. The drive or action response is to achieve the external reward and there is no action response without the external reward. When the external reward becomes common, then a greater reward is needed to create the action response. This means that the cost of motivation will consistently increase with time onto infinity.
The internal synergy has never been harnessed appropriately to garner incredible organizational growth, and companies who have touched the surface of this unlimited resource have quickly relinquished their gains because they have failed to understand the source of their achievements.
Motivation is internal and external stimuli are opposites, a simple dichotomy. An opposite is an opposing force that ends the engagement in an equal sum. To boost motivation – an internal force – one needs to leverage another internal force to mediate the motivational process. There is one focus that goes unidentified in most organizations and this unlimited resource is rarely utilized.
The most powerful force for motivation is our inner-self, our psychology, our inner voice, our social identity, and this combined force seeks one thing more than anything else and that is psychological growth.
Psychological growth for employees is the fuel that drives and sustains organizational growth. Draining the fuel of psychological growth shuts off the engine of organizational growth which sends the organization into a tailspin of failure.
All life yearns to evolve, and after basic needs have been met, people seek out psychological growth through achievement and personal/professional development. Employees want their work to be meaningful, they want their status to be respected, and they want increases in responsibility in order to feel the associated achievement. They want to be included in the social group and they want their peers to think highly of them. This internal drive is the core of motivation and job enrichment is directed at unleashing these internal factors in order to drive synergistic work performance. In order for organizations to realize a synergistic leap of success they need to maximize their employee’s motivation which is driven by the need for psychological growth. The job has to provide enrichment for the soul and increase the employee’s inner wealth. A psychologically wealthy employee is a productive employee because psychological growth is contagious and addictive. It takes a great amount of energy to develop and start the fire, but only a steady amount of fuel needs to be added in order to keep the fire roaring. The fire of motivation provides substantial benefits and returns on investment which explains why centuries, limitless efforts, substantial education, and billions of dollars have been spent attempting to uncover this hidden force of unlimited potential.
Every choice has a cost – don’t let your choice cost more than you can afford.
Keith Lawrence Miller, M.A., PCC, BCC, CPRW
Elite Pro Coach | Ivy League Resumes
ICF Certified & Credentialed Coach (PCC) | Board Certified Coach (BCC)
M.A. Columbia University | Organizational Psychologist
(855) My-Pro-Coach | Skype (718) 717-2820
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