January 12. 2011 | Kristen Soles
What motivates you at work?
Probably a lot of different things. But often there is that one thing that motivates you from your core - that keeps you moving forward when life gets a little crazy.
What motivates me stems from my childhood. I grew up in a military family and was your typical “Air Force brat.” When I was learning to drive, my father left for a year to serve in Desert Storm. (In retrospect, I wonder which one of my parents truly deserved the hazard pay for the deployment.) In addition to my father, both grandfathers and a cousin were in the armed forces. Sadly, my cousin recently lost his life fighting in our current war.
I myself am a CPA in our firm’s government contracting group. I like to think my latent motives for working with the Federal Government are due to growing up the way I did. In my profession, I am frequently called upon by my government contractors for advice on matters essential to doing business with the Federal Government. In and around the offices in which I do business, I am consistently reminded of the pride we have for those who served by the sheer number of American flags displayed. I also often see crests from various armed forces branches, pictures of the Pentagon, Navy ships, planes, or other contraptions that my clients have helped build or improve (many of which I’ll admit I don’t fully understand). Some of the owners of the companies I service are actually former military themselves. It is a fortunate thing I grew up knowing military personnel time (subtract 12 and you’re golden); if not, I’d be late for quite a few meetings. I also frequent government contracting events and award ceremonies, all of which begin with the national anthem and the presentation of colors. (Nine hundred people in a room and you can hear a pin drop between the cadences being called.)
I tend to miss these sorts of touches in civilian life and am grateful that I have clients who bring that feeling back; they remind me of where I came from. It’s comforting to have a continual reminder of what we stand for and how hard we’ve fought to get here. Those are the times when I am most aware of my strongest motivation. My clients are patriots, many of them continuing to serve our country in a contracting capacity. So pride is my motivator - not only the pride I feel for the work that my clients do and have done to keep my family safe, but also the pride in the quality of work and service our firm provides in support of their efforts. It’s worthwhile to reflect on your motivators. Doing so keeps you focused, and giving it a name makes it easier to pull out when you need it. What motivates you at work?
Comments (2) »