The Strategist

Secrets of Motivation

12/11/2015 - 14:38

Ichac Adizes is one of the consummate business consultants of the world, a brilliant expert in effective business processes management. Here are some interesting statements from his books "Insights on policy" and "Insights on management."

notevenathing via flickr
notevenathing via flickr
Caring about the heart

We teach our future business leaders how to do numbers, concepts and theories. We fill their heads, but their hearts are empty. Management schools preparing future influential leaders educate their students’ heads, but hearts are neglected. Yes, someday these people donate "shoes and jewelry", that they had been gathering whole life, for charity. But, doesn’t it look like a kind of payment for a life lived in vain? I have a suggestion that we do not admit people to business schools and do not certify them as professionals unless they prove they can take care of other people besides their own persons.

For example, an applicant would have to prove that the he has worked as a volunteer or served in the Peace Corps. Or he is going to spend his summer holidays helping needy people: working in poor neighborhoods, collecting funds for health centers, which provide free help to those who do not have health insurance, and so on. Without the spiritual sense, life is empty. Regardless of the benefits available to us, we still will not feel filled.

Never assume

Always start from scratch and with a clear head when solving problems. Do not assume. Let the task itself speaks to you. Allow yourself to act blindly, as I did when I flipped a jigsaw puzzle vertical, trying to assemble it. A decision treated with an open mind will open to you itself. Just open it. If a couple has marital problems, the children should be asked what is happening. Surprisingly, their answer will get straight to the point.

A three-day weekend

A very bold proposal - to introduce mandatory three-day weekend. One day, for example, Sunday, is "Sabbat". On that day, all shops are closed by law. No shopping. Then families will have time to get together, take a walk with neighbors. Look at Israel during the Yom Kippur to imagine what it looks like. You will understand how important is it for the soul, and that this should be done more often than once a year.

Some would say that my proposal could lead to slower economic growth. That’s it! We need not only to change the task, but also to revise criteria for measuring our success. It's time to connect it with social indicators such as reduction of crime statistics of teenage pregnancies, percentage of high school graduates, literacy rate, divorce rate and other indicators of life quality, in contrast to the living standards.

Taking responsibility

November 9, 2008, while in Berlin on consulting projects, I noticed a building with an inscription in Hebrew, with flowers lying against the wall.

- What's happening? - I asked a police officer who was on duty at the gate. – Tomorrow is Kristallnacht - he replied - and this building belongs to the Jewish cultural center.

Crystal Night (Kristallnacht), also known as the "Night of Broken Glass" – is the night of pogroms against Jews coordinated by the authorities throughout Nazi Germany on November 9, 1938. It entailed destruction of thousands of Jewish shops, buildings and synagogues. The pogromists smashed windows of shops owned by Jewish families and threatened passers-by, who wanted to make purchases at these stores. That night is remembered as the beginning of the mass persecution of Jews in Nazi Germany. Every year on the eve of this night, different German organizations lay wreaths to the building of the Jewish cultural center.

In this sense, the Germans set an example throughout the world. I would like to propose that one day of the year was dedicated not only the memory of the Holocaust, and a general pardon for every country to ask for forgiveness from everyone who has been hurt. On this day, Turks can organize a march in memory of the persecution of the Armenians, and Armenians - in memory of the persecution of the Turks. Japan apologizes for crimes against Chinese, and Americans - against the Indians.

People all over the world: women, men, young and old, like the Germans, would take part in a rally under slogan "It will never happen again." It is important to avoid accusations against other nations. Do not look for the guilty. We must admit the pain we inflicted in others. That's all it takes - just a day a year. And the rest of the time can be devoted to search for guilty.


It is not enough that you just pay for the job. Hey, wake up! If you only pay in money and benefits, which means you pay in a "currency of the Stone Age". Eventually, your employees will feel left out in the cold. No wonder they do not seek to cooperate with you. Their deepest needs - that have been developing and taking root for thousands of years - are not satisfied. Sometimes, it echoes in our companies, resulting in bad performance and low morale. Mother teach us to always say thank you. And they are right.

Based on "Insights on policy" and "Insights on management" by Ichac Adizes


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