(Note) Patience & Gratitude #4 – Acquired Patience

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If a man is able by his nature to refrain from ill-conduct, he is by nature is called patient.

However, if one acquires patience from sufferings and personal training, he could be said to have been patient by acquisition.

Prophet Muhammad SAW said,

“Whoever trains himself to be patient, Allah will help him to be patient.”

Similarly, anyone can train himself (or trained by others) to acquire any other good characteristics like chastity, or good character. This means that whoever continues doing something habitually, these habits will lead him to incorporate this particular habits into his nature.

We are able to learn and acquire new traits. And the traits or characteristic that we acquires may be deep-rooted or superficial to our personality according to the extend of our acquisition. Regardless, this might lead to the term, fake it till we make it.

The stronger and longer we work on acquiring a trait, the more natural said trait will be to us. So, istiqamah , or constant striving is required.

Never give up, just do it, consistently.

And if you failed, and times you will, just try again. #nevergiveup


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(Communication) What Google Taught Me About Personal Communication?

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The lessons are in our effort to continually innovating with the use of media and reinforced a few important lessons for how to choose your medium intelligently:

1. Know how the people you’re trying to reach use various forms of media.

For example, if you kids use texting to converse, and if you want to enter the conversation, why on Earth would you bother using email?

Keep up to date.

2. Experiment with different media to see what works est.

Is face-to-face as necessary as you think it is?

Why not try reducing face time with some key people in your life (like your subordinate) and increase it with others who might need it more such as your family?

3. When you need to stand out.

In 2008 there’s something special about receiving a personal note or letter, one that displays the distinctive hand of the author (not Times New Roman 12 point font). When was the last time you wrote a personal letter?

What do you think?


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(Quote) You’re average of 5 person you associate the most

“Choose friends wisely. You’re the average of the 5 people you associate with most.”

Tim Ferriss

Tim is a New York Times best-selling author of three books, including the The 4-Hour Workweek. He’s also an investor, host of what’s usually the #1-ranked business podcast and an entrepreneur in his own rite. Today, he’s passing on the best business advice he’s received:

“The best advice I’ve ever received is that you’re the average of the 5 people you associate with most.”

“Choose friends wisely. You’re the average of the 5 people you associate with most.”

“I’ve actually heard this from more than one person, including bestselling authors, Drew Houston of Dropbox, and many others who are icons of Silicon Valley. It’s something I re-read every morning. It’s also said that ‘your network is your net worth.’ These two work well together.”


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The Motivation Spectrum

If people are already motivated, the question now is, how motivated are they? The answer lies in the 6 “motivational outlooks” on the spectrum of motivation.

These outlook do not form a continuum. At one moment, we might operate in one particular motivational outlook and later, we may operate with an entirely diferent one.

To illustrate how motivaional outlook work, consier them in light of a routine meeting where 6 different employees are each operating individually based on a different mode of motivation:

  1. Disinterest – This one hated the meeting and considered it as as waste of time.
  2. External – This one leverage the meeting to show off his power and status within the organization.
  3. Imposed – This one is forced by his or her superiors to attend the meeting. Their superiors might be angry if they missed the meeting.
  4. Aligned – This one loved attending meeting, and felt they might gain valueable knowledge from that meeting.
  5. Integrated – this one enjoyed the meeting because her life has a noble purpose, and the meeting focused on that purpose.
  6. Inherent – This one is gregarious, loves being around people and attends all meetings.

“Setting measurable goals and outcomes is important. Having a defined finish line in front of you can be positively compelling.”

The first 3 motivational outlook are in the suboptimal motivation category and they represent the low-quality motivation or motivational junk food.

People operating based on suboptimal motivational modes often say things like,

“I have to”

“I must”

“I should”

“I’m requied to”

“It’s necessary”

“Because it’s my duty.”

“Everyday, your employees’ appraisal of their workplace leaves them with or without a positive sense of well-being. Their well-being determines their intentions, and intentions are the greatest predictors of behavior.”

The remaining 3 motivational outlook are the optimal ones. They show the kind of motivation which we want, for ourselves, our employees and the people we care about.

They are motivational “health food”.

Outlook based on alignment, integration and inherent motivation generate high-quality energy, vitality and positive well-being which leads to a sustainable results. People with optimal motivation outlook often say,

“I get to”

“I have decided to”

“I am lucky to”

“I elect to”

“External Motivators”

Organization at times would turn to external motivators to influence their employees. These motivators include money, incentives or a bigger office or even bigger title which are tangable, or approval, status, shame or fear, which are intangible. These forces work directly against the important psychological requirements employees have for autonomy, relatedness and competence.

External motivators actually undermine motivation.

“The quality of our beliefs determines the quality of our leadership values. Our leadership values ultimately determine how we lead and the quality of the workplace we create.”

External motivators can take control over our employees, driving and compelling them to act in a certain way, thus robbing them of autonomy. And eventually, the employees will come to resent the loss of control.

A self-defeating inherent message accompanies any external motivator:

“If you do as I say, then you will be rewarded”

This ham-handed message can gain only temporary, “conditional support” from the employees.

“Not all beliefs are values, but all values are beliefs”

Optimal Motivation

For most organizations, motivation is what their employees can do for them. But this reverses crucial priorities.

The magic of motivation kick into overdrive when managers address what the can do for their employees.

Answering that question fulfills one o the basic rules of motivation:

“When we focus on what we want for people, we are more likely to get the results we want from people.”

So, instead of trying to drive or control employees with carrots and sticks, or pigeon pellets, help promote thriving employees by meeting their crucial autonomy, relatedness an competence psychological needs, which are their “basic desire to thrive.”

Organizations need to move beyond a strict focus on corporate priorities which usually centered around “results, performance and productivity.”

“Great leadership takes great practice. When it comes to motivation, leadership practice includes being a role model.”

And when companies focuses on autonomy, relatedness and competence, they and their people will stand to benefit. Organizations that focus on ARC develop sel-governing workforce who believe in accountability. Such companies promote strong personal relationships, which motivate examplary “citizenship behaviors” among employees. This emphasis on competence and professional development helps create and sustain learning organizations.

Therefore, organization should help their employees to understand why they are motivated. Adopting a motivational strateg based on ARC values which ensures that our employees have an optimal motivational outlook. And when leaders model this attitude, it can become a defining characteristic of our organization, a win-win-win for employees, manager and the company.

And hence, a much holistic working culture.

The ‘Motivation Dilemma”

Managers face a motivation dilemma. Their organizations insiste that they to motivate their subordinate to work hard to meet the corporate goals. Unfortunately, since no one can motivate another person which is an impossible task to do.

That’s the dilemma.

Executives and managers who want to understand motivation should and must understand the “appraisal process”.

Employees appraise things according to what important to them and their priorities might differ from that of their managers and corporate leaders.

So, the factors which motivate employees may not align with what we want them to be motivated toward accomplishing. The goals that drive their motivation may not be akin to the objectives which we want to encourage.

“It is a mistake to think that people are not motivated. They are simply longing for the needs they cannot name.”

For example,

In 2002, the Boston Red Sox wanted to lure Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane to come work for them. And they offered him then what would have been the largest GM salary in baseball. They were shocked when he turned it down. But Beane appraised the offer against what mattered to him – “his family and the love of baseball.”

“The real story of motivating is that people are learners who long to grow, enjoy their work, be productive, make positive contributions and build lasting relationships.”

And in case of Beane, he never cared about money, so the Red Sox’s huge salary offer meant little to him. They couldn’t motivate him because he was already motivated, but in different way than the Red Sox wanted.

This is always the proble when we try to motivate people. They already are motivated but sometimes in ways we may not like.

However, we want our employees’ individual motivations to align with our organization’s goal. But now we understand that trying to leverage “motivational forces” to compel people to do as we want won’t work.

So, how can we align their goals and the company’s goals?

“It is time to stop beating our people with carrots-and-sticks and embrace different, more effective leadership strategies.”

First, understand that our employees are learners, they want to do well, they want to make solid contributions and they want their organization’s executives to think well of them. They also want to have “autonomy, relatedness and competence ” or ARC, which is the essential psychological needs.

“Rewards may help people initiate new and healthy behaviors, but they fail miserably in helping people maintain their progress or sustain results.”

Instead of offering contests or prizes, encourage your employees by enabling them to gain autonomy. That’s the secret to motivation.

Offer independence and relate to them as human beings. Help them to grow professionally and personally. Don’t worry about what they can do for you, but rather worry about what you can do for them.

In that environment, your employees will become more motivated to perform better.

When you offer autonomy, related to them and encourage their competence, and they will respond.

That’s simple human nature.

The carrot-and-stick motivation approach

“When we activate optimal motivation for ourselves, we provide more than a role model – we create a ripple effect that encourages our people’s optimal motivation.”

The carrot-and-stick approach to motivation might work in the short term, but most likely going to makes things worse over time.

It works like the “pecking pigeon paradigm.” B,F. Skinner, a Harvard psychology professor and behaviorist, used elaborate experiments with pigeons to investigate motivation. By rewarding pigeons with food pellets, Skinner was able to get the birds to do just about anything he wanted. His techniques still influence how companies try to motivate people.

But, peoples are not pigeons. Motivation is not “something you do to people”. It’s simple can’t be done. And as Jim Rohn said, there’s only one type of motivation, and that is “self-motivation”, meaning, people must motivate themselves.

Researchers such as Drs. Richard Ryan and Edward Deci have done eye-opening work to figure out on how to drive motivation in people. Their studies and other research in the field show that effective motivations has nothing to do with carrots or sticks, but it has everything to do with “hope and promise” which are the real drivers of motivation.

“Misunderstanding what motivation means leads to a misapplication of techniques to make it happen.”

The traditional belief that motivating employees is a fundamental managerial tasks which stems from confusion and mistaken ideas. Clinging to that contention lets executive hold managers responsible for motivating people.

But aligning employee motivation with the corporate motivation might require a significant change in corporate culture and in executive and managerial awareness.

#bookreview #motivation #leadership

Jika hati sakit

Berkata Malik bin Dinar,

“Sesungguhnya jika badan sakit, maka makan, minum, tidur dan rehat tidak akan selesa baginya.

Begitu juga dengan HATI. Apabila ia cenderung kepada DUNIA (sakit cinta dunia), maka nasihat-nasihat tidak lagi berguna baginya.”

(Kitab Shifatush Shafwah)