John F. Kennedy knew that being President of the United States was a big job, and he also believed that he could do it. When Kennedy sometimes said, “The pay is good, and I can walk to work,” was probably more humor and partial truth. I doubt good pay was what he had in mind when considering the highest office in the nation or was he?
There is much respect that comes with being president and many opportunities after that. Walking to work was just rolling out of bed and down the stairs from the executive suite to the lower level of the White House. No president has to walk far, but it is probably harder taking those steps every day.
Rewards Are More Than Good Pay
I think within this humor there is a real idea. If the pay is good what are you willing to do? I want you to go beyond the money and look at the other rewards. Look inside yourself. You will find purpose and value from the work you do. People who are internally motivated will find satisfaction in fulfilling the needs of other people, organizations, a nation or the world.
Construct An Environment That Is Rewarding
JFK was motivated by more than just the pay. He was driven by a bigger picture. A job that was bigger than one man or woman. It was not about him it was about an idea. Those ideas allowed him to connect with people. He created a positive environment where people could collaborate and make them feel like they were serving a bigger cause.
When you are trying to find motivation, attempt to look at WHY you do things not for who or what. What is the problem you want to solve? You can find the WHY in a vision or mission statement. When motivating people during coaching, we try to tap into the WHY.
Understanding and Communicating Purpose
You cannot empower people, but you can create a climate where people can find that purpose and that helps them find the power they possess. JFK created momentum by establishing a compelling, detailed view of a future he saw – his life purpose – his why. When the pay (internal rewards) is good, you live in a deep place. Meaning comes from experience which results in purposeful life work creating a deep desire for change.