Posts Tagged With: excitement

Doggie School Bus

Categories: kirk weisler, coffee sugar, exercise 3, yoga class, and walking in the garden. | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Back to School – Playing to Win (post by Kirk Weisler)

Today I want to talk about excitement…and why it often fades away…if we’re not careful in culture and in our leading.

1st day of school for the kids this morning.  Last night was filled with the discussions of teachers, schedules and friends.  There was some nervous excitement… but mostly just excitement.  New first day of school outfits were laid out carefully along with backpacks loaded with the essentials (and lots of other stuff).  The kids spoke of their desire to put their best foot forward… and some parental reminders of what that “best foot” might look like, sound like along with a few role plays for good measure were offered.

Rebecca woke up extra early to prepare the “Breakfast of Champions” for our young all-stars.  The girls woke up this morning were dressed in minutes and wore their new back packs almost from the moment they woke up.  The boys were no different… Josh excited for middle school and Jake for his high school and college classes. Their excitement was contagious… so much so that last night after everyone was finally asleep…I found myself wanting to go back to college myself. (I haven’t signed up yet…but I’m still thinking about it)

The problem is the excitement they have now will almost certainly diminish over time.  We all know this… because we’ve seen it happen time and time again. It has happened to others….and it has happened to us.

Why am I talking about excitement ? …  I have a favorite article published by the (Harvard Management Update) entitled “Why Your Employees Are Losing Motivation“.  Here is a small piece of the introduction.

The great majority of employees are quite enthusiastic when they start a new job. But in about 85 percent of companies, our research finds, employees’ morale sharply declines after their first six months-and continues to deteriorate for years afterward. That finding is based on surveys of about 1.2 million employees at 52 primarily Fortune 1000 companies from 2001 through 2004, conducted by Sirota Survey Intelligence (Purchase, New York).

Honestly… are you as excited on your job now as you were when you first started it?  If the answer is yes… WOW, great for you!  You are an exception to the vast majority of the workforce…and the world.  Outside of yourself…what about your team?  Are any of them (or all of them) in the 85% that the survey identifies as having lost it?

The most important questions might be…

”How can I/we create a culture that helps us to avoid losing motivation in the first place?”

“What can I/we do to get back that sense of excitement and enthusiasm we had when we first started the job?”

The article offers… some tremendous insights for leaders… I have linked to it here before ..but here it is again.

Besides all that the article has to offer… I would simply add this..   One of most significant and insidious joy suckers and morale killers is the cynical, sarcastic and altogether negative voice of the dis-engaged members of the workforce.  Their negativity can set up a cultural tone that quickly becomes an established excitement neutralizing norm…that sends a very loud message to new arrivals that “enthusiasm is not” what we show or do around here.

I know my kids will come home in a few months talking about what’s not right in their school…and some of it may be legitimate…but the majority of will simply be a parroted echo of what they hear in the hallways, from burned out teachers,  and what they pick up on the playground.   When I do….(actually before I do) You can bet we’ll be talking about our strategy to not allow our excitement and love for learning and life to be dimmed or diminished by such talk.  Instead we will talk about a different kind of peer pressure…  one where the positive possibilities and unlimited potential can grow.  A playground where people are excited to play…and playing to win!

The perfect time to talk to your team members about their level of motivation is now.  Is it where it used to be?  Is it where they would like it to be?  If not.. knowing it won’t get back to where it was without some change, without a plan, or without some help…. then what is the change that is needed, what is your plan to make that change happen, and how can I, your leader, help?   Because… I want you, and we need you to be excited.  Because I want to win… and I want you to win… I want us to win together and to be excited about the journey.

Kirk Out

Categories: kirk weisler, coffee sugar, exercise 3, yoga class, and walking in the garden. | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

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