Increasing motivation in the board room and the classroom

By William Seidman We talk a lot about the importance of teaching people to be active, self-directed learners in order to become great leaders. To be truly effective, leadership development programs have to be realistic and applicable for each person and situation. The best way to create an applicable and useful leadership development program is to engage the potential leader in the creation of the program. When potential leaders develop their own learning programs, the programs fit their unique needs. As a result, learners are more motivated and the programs are more effective. Not surprisingly, researchers on student motivation in the classroom have drawn the same conclusions. In “Student Motivations and Attitudes: The Role of the Affective Domain in Geoscience Learning,” the author distills recent research on motivation and learning in the educational setting. Time and again, the same recurring themes on student motivation arise. Teachers can motivate their students to learn by: • Helping students identify with role models—either peer models or others outside the classroom • Helping students find personal meaning and value in the material • Creating learning activities that are relevant to students’ lives • Creating an atmosphere that is open and supportive, and allows for student autonomy • Helping students feel a sense of belonging in the learning community Sound familiar? Motivation and learning go hand in hand. The Affirmative Leadership methodology, when carried out in an atmosphere that is open and supportive, with potential leaders creating and guiding their own learning process, inspires a sense of belonging and “buy-in.” This system builds a culture of greatness that emanates throughout an organization.  ]]>

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