What motivates you?

LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. -- Motivation doesn't always come easy. You see it from time to time, you expect it from others and sometimes you look deep within yourself to find it. For me, it manifests itself within my children, when I put on the uniform or when I witness a selfless act. 

It's been said that if you want to make things happen the ability to motivate yourself and others is a crucial skill. At work, home and everywhere in between, people use motivation to get results. It requires a delicate balance of communication, structure and incentives. 

Leaders motivate using several different techniques and tools. Some use performance recognition, kindness, deadlines, short and long term goals, constructive criticism and some, as a last resort, use consequences. There really is no limit to what motivates someone to perform. 

As supervisors and leaders, it's our responsibility to identify both strengths and weaknesses; not only within ourselves, but in those we wish to lead. This isn't a simple task and it requires a great deal of communication, commitment and honest feedback on the part of the leader and those they serve. 

We owe it to each and every Airman to create an environment that is challenging, rewarding and fulfilling. Seek out feedback and get excited about what you do for our Air Force. Find out what motivates you and look for ways to exploit that response daily. You will be surprised at how contagious motivation and enthusiasm can be when others see you at your best.