Streamline - Fall 2014 - (Page 30)
BY MICHAEL JOHNSON
Can You Motivate Others?
I heAr IT so often: "You can't motivate someone else," people say. "You can't open up someone's mind
and pour in desire. A person has to want to." So many people believe that statement to be true. Is it?
have to work
hard at their
us to listen to
That belief system - that we can't motivate
others - is a seductive way to think. After all,
we constantly hear complaints from managers
in industry that "workers don't care anymore."
We hear teachers say, "Students are not like we
were." And we hear a line from so many coaches,
"I don't know what's the matter with young people these days. They're just not motivated."
So if so many share that belief, it must be true
... right? Problem is, I'm puzzled about that. I'm
really confused. Here's why:
If we can't motivate people, how and why
does any team involved in some sort of competition ever win? If you can't motivate people, why
doesn't everyone come in last?
Why is the word "upset" in the English language? (If you can't "motivate" people, the favorite should always win.) Why does one coach have
a 70/30 lifetime winning percentage and another
coach only a 20/80 lifetime record? Did the first
coach get "lucky" for his or her entire career,
somehow always mysteriously blessed with kids
who "wanted to"?
Somehow I doubt "luck" is the answer. So
what is? Why do some managers, teachers and
coaches have more success than others?
Maybe the answer has something to do with
leadership? Most of us tend to believe high performance stems from the student. Of course that's
true. But maybe high performance also comes
out more because of who our boss is and how he
or she acts, or because of our teacher and how he
or she treats us, or from our coach and how we
are coached and taught by that person.
Great and gifted teachers are rare (not just
classroom, but "teacher" meaning anyone who
has a positive impact on your life). True teachers
30 S T R E A M L I N E * F a l l 2 0 1 4
have to work hard at their craft. True teachers
get us to listen to them. How on earth do you do
that - get someone to listen?
When I returned to the world of roping at 45,
the first few people I asked for help focused on
my age. "Well, it's been a long time," they would
say. "At your age, I wouldn't expect too much."
They focused on my limitations. Some years
later, I was blessed to find Kenneth Colson and
Bronc Fanning - both great ropers and, more
importantly, true teachers. Rather than talking
about what I couldn't do, they said, "Let's get to
work." Neither ever promised me something I
couldn't do. They simply began telling me how to
improve. It became obvious to me they believed
I could. Which do you think I listened to more?
Those who thought I was too old or too lacking
in ability? Or those who thought I could?
And about that belief that you can't motivate someone else - that we have to want to?
When someone says that, I always think of Lee
Graves and Jessie. Lee Graves, steer wrestler
from Canada, wanted to buy Jessie. Several of
his friends counseled against such a move, saying
the horse just "didn't have it." But Lee believed in
Jessie and bought him anyway. "I knew that horse
just needed to have his confidence built," he
would later say - when Jessie was named "Steer
Wrestling Horse of the Year" in the PRCA.
So if "we have to want to," as most people
seem to believe, then surely Jessie must have
been standing out in the pasture one day - and
decided all on his own - to become one of the
greatest bull-dogging horses the world has
Can you motivate others?
Sure you can. It's been done to me.
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Streamline - Fall 2014
From the President: Conversations
From the Executive Director: Changes and Updates
The Importance of Continuing Professional Education
Small Town Mayor, Big Time Dedication
Benefits of Water Reclamation and Reuse
USDA Rural Development
2014 EXPO Highlights
Throwing My Loop: Can You Motivate Others?
eLearning Benefits 35 Membership Application
Do You Know What Your VRWA Benefits Are?
Welcome New Members
VRWA Training Calendar
Board of Directors
Index to Advertisers/Ad.com
Streamline - Fall 2014