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The Power of Commitment in your Professional and Personal Lives

Commitment.

To commit.

To do what you said you were going to do despite what you may think or feel.

To put your best into something irregardless of whether you like it or not. Why? .. because you said you would.

Commitment is a powerful part of any successful motivate team. It is also a powerful part of any personal development journey.

To be able to commit you absolutely need two things:

  1. A Goal
  2. A Plan

If you are a leader/manager or supervisor in your company don’t make this common mistake:

Assume that commitment to the task at hand and the team is “their” responsibility alone.

I have been guilty of measuring someone’s motivation and drivenness by the commitment they showed to the team. I have also guilty of “writing off” people who didn’t show the commitment I was looking for.

If you can relate to that, you’ll agree that commitment is a choice that each employee needs to make. No one else can choose to commit unless they do. It is absolutely true that “they” have a large responsibility in the area of demonstrating commitment. I’m not questioning that, but I want to use this blog to remind us of the role WE play as leaders to empower our people to be able to commit.

Here are some reflective questions:

What if a lack of commitment was due to not knowing exactly what they are supposed to commit to? What if the absence of commitment was due to not knowing how to get there? What if the lack of commitment was due to a lack of tools to execute the plan? What if a resistance to commit stemmed from a goal that had no relevance to the personal goals of an employee?

What if. What if. What if. I hope you’ll agree that there are many scenarios when a lack of commitment from an individual is actually a problem WE own as leaders/managers or supervisors.

So what should leaders do?

You likely heard the following phrase: People are the product of their environment.

My father, born in 1924 worked for a single steel company for 33 years. 3 sick days in 33 years. If you were sick, you took an aspirin and went to work. He was hard working! Was he born better? No. When you grow up in the great depression if you don’t work hard you don’t eat as a family. His environment engrained the importance of hard work in him and he kept that for all of his life.

Here are two musts to up the level of commitment on your team:

  1. Create an environment that empowers it and makes it important. This means that your focus as a leader is the clear communication of goals and making sure they have the tools to do the job. It also means you spend some time helping employees understand how what they are doing has purpose even to their personal journey (i.e. Whats in it for them!) Once you’ve done that there should be consequences for their choices (reward for good, discipline for bad). If an environment allows non commitment employees will use that small window to escape doing things they fear doing etc.
  2. ASK them to personally commit when handing out responsibilities. Don’t just end off a communication session with “Any questions?”. The answer will likely be “no boss” whether they had them or not. End of communication sessions with “What can you commit to over the next month?” There is a big difference between a boss who says: I need you to do THESE THINGS and a leader who says “I need to be able to count on YOU to get these things done.”

I’ve learned to never assume that a lack of commitment is due to the lack of a personal motivation. Create an environment that empowers commitment and offers each team member a clear choice and you’ll love the results.

Commitment isn’t just powerful in our professional lives. Some of you owe it to yourself to renew a commitment to something in your personal life. There may be something you feel you are missing and the only reason you haven’t achieved it yet is a commitment to get there. If that is you in any way, continue to read below and watch my video blog: “The Power of Commitment: 72 Red Roses and 1 White One:

As I write this blog, I am looking at the dozen roses my wife Donna got for Mother’s day from our two daughters. They reminded me of a personal story around the power of commitment I thought I’d share. Its a 10 minute video clip you can watch below:

So what do you commit to?

Have a great week!

David

David Benjatschek is a sought after leadership, communication and personal development author & speaker based out of Calgary Alberta. He speaks throughout North America empowering audiences with a passionate, genuine style. Authorenticity workshops strip away the emotional complexity of managing people down to a few straight forward choices every leader can make to build teams the work hard, play hard and win. www.authorenticity.com

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