The question also must be posed frequently because sources of energy are often at some level contradictory—this speaks to the Hard Irony inherent in the psyche of our clients (and our own psyche as professional coaches). We are motivated by many activities and find gratification in many different outcomes. While we might initially believe that our energy comes from a specific source or from several different sources that are closely aligned with one another, we often come to realize (especially as we grow older) that it is a much more complicated picture. We are excited when given the task of envisioning a new project, but also are pulled toward an existing project that we know will continue to be successful. We look forward to assuming responsibility for a task force in our organization—but know that we will miss the gratification that comes from being allowed to work alone on a project. We are delighted to know that we are going to be babysitting our grandchildren, but also long for the peace-and-quiet of a good book.
As organizational coaches, we can be of great benefit to our clients when we help them identify the various sources of energy in their organizational (and personal) life. Burn-out can often be avoided if a leader comes to recognize that they can shift to a different task or take on a different role when their current endeavors have ceased to be either motivating or gratifying. We know that this capacity to shift focus and activity is central to the capacity of many men and women to keep fully engaged in their work. While some leaders prefer more variety than do other leaders, it is appropriate to assume that there are multiple sources of energy that any leader can tap in order to stay “alive” in their organization and engage in a world of Irony.Download Article 1K Club