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This New Year Re-Evaluate Your Focus as a Leader

By Ana María Dávila from the city of Buenos Aires, Argentina

Translated by Dolores R. Guiñazú, LiftValue Translations & Consulting from Buenos Aires, Argentina

According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, the word “motivation” is defined as “a reason or cause, a group of internal or external factors that somehow determine a person’s actions”. For example, “wanting to escape can be a strong motivation for travel”. A second meaning is the “desire or willingness to do something or enthusiasm”, as when you say, “keep staff updated and maintain interest and motivation”.

What does this mean for the leaders within a corporation, whether it is large, medium or small? Does employee motivation fulfill a leading role in corporate strategies presented? Try to imagine the following scenario right now: from the doorman you greet when you arrive to work to your closest co-worker and your “right-hand man”, the essential person for you to keep the operation going. Everyone, regardless of rank, asking themselves the following questions:

Do I know what is expected from me at work?

Is either my supervisor or someone else at work concerned about me as a person?

Does my company’s mission make me feel that my job is important?

Do my opinions count at work?

Have I had the opportunities to learn and grow in my job during the past year?

 

Alarmingly, recent surveys confirmed what the professionals in the human talent field and even the leaders of big organizations suspected, that is, understanding why, if we are so focused on producing, our own people have not yet defined us as the best in the field. And it is that in the Latin American ranking, these simple questions show that less than 15% of the work force today is truly committed to their job.

 

Although a person takes the aspects of work conditions and benefits into great consideration when choosing their next professional level, it is also our duty not to allow him or her to lose interest later due to lack of work motivation. Remember that this is closely associated to commitment, which we spoke about before.

 

I am sure that you’ve already heard this motivational speech before, especially in those well-intentioned team building exercises and other workshops and dynamics that come from Human Resources that most probably never translate into clear goals or actions later reflected upon by  employees but as simple days where “everyone has a good time” and nothing else.

 

We are still at the start of a new year full of personal resolutions (I am going on a diet, I’m taking up a hobby, etc.). I propose that amongst your professional resolutions, you read the title of this article again.

 

Do you dare be a leader, more than a boss? Do you dare set the bar, regardless of the industry you are in, proving that when you focus on your people, all the production indicators and numbers that were previously stagnant or just above average have now improved exponentially?

 

I’d like to conclude with a fact from the Corporate Culture and Achievement Book from Harvard University’s School of Business. Through an in-depth and extensive study, it was determined that those companies that focused on empowering and motivating the internal culture of their employees grew six times faster, increasing the market value ten times faster with a 750% growth in earnings.

 

There is a lot more research to do regarding this thing called motivation. We are heading towards an era in which experts are focused on production, while leaders will be voted and chosen according to their experience, skills, empathy, and resonance, while acknowledging themselves as the voice of others instead of a large production line.

 

It’s worth thinking about investing in our people. It is more than a philosophy.

 

Translator´s Profile:

Dolores R. Guiñazú is a Certified Sworn (Court-Approved) English to Spanish Translator. She began her career as an in-house translator for multinational corporations in Argentina. For the last seventeen years she has been a fully devoted Freelance Translator, working in teams and with colleagues for Global Agencies and direct clients. Dolores holds an MBA in Marketing from USAL & Albany University in New York. She is also a Spanish Copy Editor and Proofreader certified by Fundación Litterae and Fundación del Español Urgente (Fundéu). Her main areas of specialization are health care, marketing, legal & corporate communications.

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