Zig Ziglar’s reputation as an inspiring speaker, successful business professional and super nice guy was everything I sought to obtain in life. A mutual acquaintance introduced me to Mr. Ziglar by saying, “Zig, Will Harris holds you in highest regard. His life goal was to meet you.”
Mr. Ziglar smiled and said, “Well, Will, we just need to work on raising your goals.”
Looking back, the moment solidified for me the power of combining motivation with education.
As a young professional, I struggled with my career path. I considered being either a motivational speaker or a corporate trainer. Motivational speakers inspired change, yet offered few specific techniques for improvement. Corporate trainers provided lots of knowledge as long as you could stay wake to listen.
New to the business world, I felt torn between being too fun or too boring. I believed synthesizing inspiration, the “rah-rah,” with technical training would create long-term improvement. To me “rah-rah” were big ideas or principles and training delivered techniques for implementation. Both were needed to help employees succeed.
To develop effective motivation I identified the primary stimuli that propel people to action: Power (control), Social (friendships), Survival (back against the wall), Success (potential benefits), and Self Worth (strong self-image). My ability to motivate colleagues and employees increased as I incorporated strategies targeting each stimulus.
Corporate training’s primary goal is to teach techniques on how to do better. There are three primary ways in which adults learn: auditory (hearing/saying), visual (seeing/observing), and kinesthetic (doing/involvement). People retained more information as I paired my teaching styles to their learning style. I started to include aspects from all three styles within my training. Once my superiors noticed improved knowledge with sustainable results among staff, they promoted my training to others.
Whether you are the boss or work for one, your ability to motivate and educate others is a cornerstone of your career success. Raising your goals to have interactions at work that are both educational and motivational creates special moments throughout your career.
About the Author
Will Harris is an author, speaker and lifestyle coach who conducts training seminars in the United States and around the world. Will and his wife, Lori, are raising their son in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., where he’s also a mentor at the USA Job Corps. Will’s website is WillPowerNOW.com and his bestselling book “WillPower NOW” is sold at Amazon.com