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I Only Notice When it Hurts, Motivating people without Fear

Posted by Jody Urquhart on Thu, Dec 02, 2010 @ 12:03 PM

motivate peopleWhy is it we only notice things when they go wrong? Why is it so hard to notice the positive and good things people do?

I only notice my health when I feel pain. I notice my son most when he is crying and screaming. I notice my fiance when he leaves his clothes lying on the floor.

Several years back, I checked into the Emergency Ward at the Richmond Hospital with my boyfriend (at the time) with an ankle the size of a baseball. I twisted it hiking. The lady at the counter said, "fill out this form and have a seat over there, your wait time is 2 to 3 hours" I shouted, "What? 2 to 3 hours? I can't wait that long, my ankle is throbbing, this is an emergency!" She suggested the only way I can get to the top of the list is if I am bleeding.

I could see my than boyfriend eyeing me, i know what he was thinking, If only i could cut you.

The only way you get immediate attention in this hospital is if you show up with a bullet in your chest or are the victim of a knife rage. Interesting and kind of backwards. This immediacy theory holds true in hospitals, organizations, the stock market, my family kitchen. We pay attention to whoever or whatever needs it the most at the time. Immediacy takes priority.

In reality the people who take care of their health should get priority, ( ok after the guy who is about to drop dead from blood loss). The people who do a good job consistently at work should get the most attention. When my son is good, this is when i should take notice.

I have studied this alot. The keynote speaker at a conference in ohio recently shared a story about how his son committed suicide because he didn't pay enough attention to him. Sad, because now that opportunity is lost forever.

Leaders could motivate company employees by recognizing their efforts along the way, instead of only noticing when they quit.

Leadership and diversity experts agree that fear is a primary motivator in life, even more so than love, gratitude, or respect.

Motivating people begins with recognizing thier uniqueness and contribution on a regular basis. It's about paying attention to what people do right even when everything is going wrong.



Tags: motivate company, the keynote speaker, leadership and Diversity Expert, Motivating People

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