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  • Posted by: Koen Pouw

Me!! I’m announcing myself to be employee of the month! Why? Not because I am craving for a prize or reward. No, because I did a good job in my first month as independent business owner, and I deserve a little bit of recognition from myself.

I had one main worry on my mind when starting my own business. What is going to drive me to get to work everyday. I’m not starting with an assignment or any obligations. Sure, I wanted to get my first job, but I’m not in a rush, there is no burning platform. I gave myself the gift of time to do it right, and at the same time I gave myself the curse of no pressure. My main drivers to finish my work have often been external; deadlines, people saying can’t do something, winning, getting a certificate, etc.

To my surprise I have not experienced a day this month that I was not motivated to turn on my laptop, do research, network or meet with potential customers. At the end of the month I looked back and tried to figure out what changed and trying to find out where this feeling came from.

It reminded me of the blog that my brother wrote some time ago, how he found the inner motivation and drive to do better and improve and ran a marathon sub 3 hours! I figured out that just like him, I had a goal I wanted to accomplish, a goal that was completely mine and I 100% believe in. I want to help people and organizations grow professionally and personally. That believe also is pushing me to grow, doing things I never did before, and develop myself without external motivations.

I am sure the first reaction of a lot of people would be; “Yeah, that’s all great, but naming yourself employee of the month, isn’t it a little arrogant” or “Which metrics did you move to justify this recognition”?

These are very valid questions, and I looked at a set of indicators that would demonstrate my personal and professional growth.

Business Indicators:

–          I have setup a new company

–          I have signed my first customer

–          I have built a website, LinkedIN page and wrote blogs, that have been seen by >8000 people.

Maybe not impressive numbers for another company, but huge achievements for myself. I’m sure the personal indicators measured by my family (How often is dad home when we come out of school, the amount of times I’m cooking dinner now) are also seeing peaks in performance.

I believe the essence of the story is that we all need a bigger goal in our jobs. Something to motivate us, but driven by imminent deadlines. It’s driven by a sense of purpose, a personal identification. We should have our own measurements to see how we do. For me it’s some business indicators and personal goals. For my brother it was beating himself and run that marathon sub 3 hours.

And let’s be honest, if we meet our goals and achieve growth, a small gesture of recognition goes a long way to boost the energy of your employees to continue their great work!

Author: Koen Pouw

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