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I-motivate, U-motivate

They say we are all motivated for different reasons. Motivation is attached to our behaviour and goals. Motivation for a sportsperson is about winning, for a salesperson is about money or for a journalist is about winning a Wakeley. Of course that’s why they chose these professions.

Motivation is about achieving and being self-gratified and being acknowledged by our peers. Or is that not the reason?

A friend of mine, Janine Buesnel put motivation in this little antidote worth sharing. “Ivan! Our salespeople like ice-cream, but they don’t all like the one flavour and some will want frozen yoghurt”.

With this in mind I was working with a food retailer Markt and suggested to Maureen the owner that she move Steve from the grill to the register as he had the right qualities to sell. He was friendly, polite, he wanted to please the customers, he was an order taker. I said to Maureen lets set him a challenge, select an item that you want to move faster, it was Nutella donuts! We moved Steve from the grill and said to Steve, you are going to learn to be on the front counter and we will teach you how to interact with the customers so that you can upsell. We gave the basic training in customer service, sales and communication. I asked if he was ready, he was.

We set a challenge that he would focus on selling donuts, I had in my mind a number and asked him what he thought he could achieve, his answer was five over lunch. He achieved 10 in that period.

The reward I offered to my amazement was declined as he was on a health kick. I asked how do you want to celebrate? His reply was “nothing, I am so stoked at what I achieved and that I made a difference”. My mistake was I didn’t know what he was motivated by and never asked.

So both Steve and I learnt things about motivation. I learnt to find out what motivates an individual and to find out what reward will help that person achieve the goal. Steve is now confident on the till being a food salesperson and is flourishing as he continues to learn more about himself.

The takeaway advice is don’t assume what motivates someone due to their profession. Rather find out what motivates the individual and reward accordingly with something that will entice them to achieve success. Reward is important and you need to celebrate the success.

My goal is to make a difference to those whom I come into contact with to give all a better outcome.

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