It has been said there are no undisciplined people, only unmotivated people or those who have not tapped into their purpose.

As a young leader, I spent a fair amount of time trying to motivate the unmotivated, trying to get people to do what they didn’t want to do. I call it “pushing on a string.” Futile! I’ve pretty much stopped trying it. People can change, but they’ve got to WANT to change and that comes from within, not from without.

As a leader, I can be a role model. I can shine the light on the path but I can’t (and won’t) walk the path for them.

These days I focus on finding good people and then sharing the vision with them, letting them catch the fever. Most do, some don’t. Most of those who don’t leave.

“Sharing the vision.” “Telling the dream.” Be it “putting smiles on customers’ faces,” creating a “learning organization,” or “achieving excellence.” Whatever it is, it can be as much fun and as exciting as putting points on the scoreboard in any pro game ever played. If you catch the vision, if you dream the dream.

My job is to make the vision REAL to every Team Member. I’ve got a way to go, but I’m enjoying the process. This quote from Antoine de Saint-Exupery says it best, really focuses my energy on my task as a leader:

“If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea.”

Antoine de Saint-Exupery (1900–1944) was a French writer and aviator whose most famous work was ”The Little Prince.” He disappeared while flying a mission during World War II.