Contributed by: Matthew E. Chope, CFP®
What motivates you? You might get out of bed in the morning and go to work because you want shelter, nutrition and safety. You might do it because you love your job and can’t wait to get to the office. Understanding what incentivizes you can help you accomplish what is most important and help you prioritize to do the hardest things first. These are important – yet sometimes overlooked – lessons to share with your children, whether they are tackling tough assignments in school or facing obstacles at the beginning of their career.
Rewards = Results
Try figuring out how to motivate yourself to get results suggests Charlie Munger, Vice Chairman of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Corporation. He calls it the “reward and punishment super response tendency” in his book On Success. Great employers have managed this for their key employees; but you can do this for yourself. When you achieve the results you want, reward yourself.
Early in my career, at age 25 I needed to make calls to people I did not know and ask them to considering doing financial planning with me. This was a difficult task, but I knew it was necessary to build a business. At the time I enjoyed coffee so it became my reward. If I made my calls each day and achieved the results I needed to succeed, the next morning I treated myself to a coffee. At the end of the week, if I meet my weekly goal, I bought myself a Twix candy bar to enjoy. Your personal rewards may be different, but they should be motivating. And expect them to evolve over time. Maybe that Twix becomes a vacation if you reach your quarterly goal or new car if you meet your annual goal.
Setting Your Priorities
If you have 5 projects or jobs and one is going to be the most difficult (but also the most important), where do you begin? I suggest if you are having a difficult time in a certain aspect of your business, begin by tackling a portion of the problem first. Then go to something that’s easier and come back to the subject that is troubling before ending your day. Back to me at age 25, I didn’t like making calls to people I didn’t know but needed to make 20 a day. I found if I started by doing the difficult part – I wasn’t looking at that list all day.
If you can determine what motivates you to accomplish your daily tasks, you can reach your work goals. As a bonus, linking incentives to challenging tasks and prioritizing your time can also lead to personal growth and accomplishment.
Matthew E. Chope, CFP ® is a Partner and Financial Planner at Center for Financial Planning, Inc. Matt has been quoted in various investment professional newspapers and magazines. He is active in the community and his profession and helps local corporations and nonprofits in the areas of strategic planning and money and business management decisions. In 2012 and 2013, Matt was named to the Five Star Wealth Managers list in Detroit Hour magazine.
Five Star Award is based on advisor being credentialed as an investment advisory representative (IAR), a FINRA registered representative, a CPA or a licensed attorney, including education and professional designations, actively employed in the industry for five years, favorable regulatory and complaint history review, fulfillment of firm review based on internal firm standards, accepting new clients, one- and five-year client retention rates, non-institutional discretionary and/or non-discretionary client assets administered, number of client households served.
The information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete. Any opinions are those of Matthew Chope, CFP® and not necessarily those of Raymond James.