Newsletter by Barbara Mintzer

Barbara Mintzer's Newsletter
The Power of a Vision... a Leader's Journey

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June / July 2007
When the Motivation for Work Changes

"One of the important transitions that is likely to take place
in a person's work-life is the transition from being motivated
by the chance to demonstrate competence to being motivated
by the chance to find meaning. It is the shift from the question
of HOW to the question of WHY."
                                                 William Bridges
                       "Transitions: Making Sense of Life's Changes"

I have always loved the above quote from William Bridges' masterpiece of a book on dealing with life's changes. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is moving from being motivated by the HOW in their work to the WHY. I am at that place now as I write this Newsletter. This Newsletter is my 50th one, and last month started my fifth year of writing it. When I first started I was motivated by the chance to produce a Newsletter each month that would be of value to you. I believe I have accomplished that.

However, after 50 Newsletters, it is becoming harder to find material that would answer the WHY of doing it every month. Since I only want to spend my time and yours on information that will be of interest and value, each Newsletter from now on will cover two months. This will give me more time to research information that I believe will help you in your personal/professional life. If there is a topic or issue that you would like me to write on, please let me know. The best examples and information I receive are from you, my readers. You are in the "trenches" doing the day-to-day work. Anything you wish to share with me will be of help to all my readers.

If you are at that point in your work-life where you have demonstrated to yourself that you CAN do the job you set out to do, you have been doing it for some time, and now you are wondering "is that all there is?" it would be the perfect time to ask yourself the following two questions:

1.    Why am I still doing this?
2.    Why does it matter?

The first question is so important because it speaks to the issue of purpose. Once we have achieved a goal and have demonstrated to ourselves that we could accomplish it, how long do we stay put in our achievement? It seems we just about accomplish what we set out to do, and that nagging voice inside asks "now what?" We want to turn that voice off, and relax awhile, however, that nagging voice is the voice of purpose egging us on once more to become passionate about another goal to achieve. It is our inside "coach" that urges us to the next level. This is how we continually fulfill the human need for purpose. If you are asking yourself "why am I still doing this?" and you cannot find an answer that feels right to you, this may be the time to move on.

The second question directly addresses your core needs from the work you do. What do you want to experience from the work you do? You want a sense of accomplishment; you want to feel needed; you want to feel respected and appreciated; you want to feel that your work has a direct impact on the bottom line; and when you get up in the morning you want to feel that you are contributing to the well being of people in this world. That's why it matters very much if you are not feeling any of these feelings. There are many considerations involved in making decisions, however, through the years I have learned to give the feelings in my heart and in my gut the respect they deserve. When what you are doing now has lost its meaning and purpose, go inside for some of the answers and the direction you need.

"If your success is not on your own terms,
if it looks good to the world but does not feel
good in your heart, it is not success at all."

                                              Anna Quindlen

As people we change. What was satisfying and meaningful at one time, may no longer feel the same to us now. When we are able to take some quiet time and ask ourselves purposeful and focused questions, we begin to chart a path for the next step in our lives. I urge you to make time to start feeling comfortable with silence. It is in the silence that our best ideas and our heartfelt feelings come to the surface to be examined.

If you can find a quiet place to sit uninterrupted for ten minutes, you are on your way to harnessing the power of silence. Take a few deep breaths and relax. When you feel comfortable ask yourself one of the above two questions, and see what answers come to mind. Whatever comes to mind is okay...there is no judging or critiquing involved here. After you have done this for awhile, the answers you get to your question will be much more targeted and focused on your situation. It takes patience and persistence to determine the next chapter in our lives, but it is well worth the time and effort.

We have had a lot to think about in this Newsletter. If you would like to share your insights with me, I would love to hear from you. I am now working in-house with companies and hospitals to help employees deal with organizational changes. In addition to my workshops and seminars, I am facilitating panel discussions and round tables. I would LOVE to offer this to your organization. The results are powerful.

About the Author

Barbara Mintzer is a nationally recognized speaker and consultant with over 30 years in business and healthcare. She speaks from experience! Her how-to programs provide participants with immediately applicable skills and strategies for getting buy-in and commitment from staff and staying on top of their professions in today's competitive and constantly changing workplace. Barbara presents keynote talks and breakout sessions for international, national, regional and state Conferences. She also conducts management retreats and in-house seminars. She facilitates panel discussions and roundtables and can be a master of ceremonies for your event...a good investment for your meeting budget. To explore the possibility of having Barbara speak at your next event, or work with your staff/leadership team, please contact her office.

Phone: (805) 964-7546
FAX: (805) 964-9636

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