Using the iWAM and Coaching to Change One Man's Career

We all know that change is the only thing that's constant. And change can happen very quickly - even when it comes to your career outlook. One of our partners, John Lane-Smith, found this to be the case with a senior assistant project manager at one Australian company. We will call him Tom. Tom had once been a productive, motivated part of a team that had the accolade of achieving the best partnership ever with Roads and Traffic Authority. But in three years, he had become completely demotivated, and was looking to leave the company. His project manager (we'll call him Jerry) later told our partner that he was just about to do an appraisal on his assistant that would identify Tom as unenthusiastic, having low morale, pessimistic and unable to be coached to high productivity. In Jerry's view, Tom was not capable of holding the position of "project manager."

Tom's goal was simply to like the job again, and he achieved it. Using the iWAM to profile the assistant and the manager revealed the problem: they were motivated by completely different factors. For example, Jerry scored 10% for the "Focus on the Past" pattern and 150% for the "Focus on the Future" pattern. These scores mean that the manager is extremely motivated by thoughts of the future. He is a strategic thinker, his focus is on the long-term implications, and he wants to make decisions that will really help the company five years from now. Tom, on the other hand, scored 145% on "Focus on the Past" and -10% on "Focus on the Future." These scores are complete opposites, and Tom is highly motivated by past events. He always thinks back to what he has learned from his past mistakes and successes, and he makes decisions based on what his experience has taught him.

So what is the outcome when co-workers have completely different motivations? Disaster. This is where the co-workers in our case find themselves. But there is a way to avoid this disaster, and even to resolve it: By understanding their differences and adjusting the way they communicate, people can greatly improve their relationships, and find it much easier to talk to and motivate others.

John Lane-Smith knew this of course, and he had a one-hour consultation with Jerry explaining how he could motivate his assistant. John conveyed that none of the metaprogram patterns are bad. We just have to be aware of them and how to use them. No one should be ashamed of a focus on the past or the future. For some jobs, certain metaprograms may be highly advantageous. The most successful auditors, for example, are often motivated by the past. They examine an organization's records, and may give advice based on past experience. A focus on the future, however, is helpful in positions where prediction and future planning is important, such as stock brokers, meteorologists, and even many upper-level managers. John explained these ideas and used the iWAM Management Report to show exactly what words and methods could be used to motivate Tom.

Two days after the consultation, Tom called John asking what he had done to his project manager, and saying that his life had turned around. Things had changed again. This time Tom was back to his enthusiastic, productive, capable self!

If you're tired of playing cat and mouse, find a solution that will change it all - find a reliable solution from jobEQ.

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last modified: 2006/Aug/07 15:57 UTC