The Self-Motivation Facet in Leadership and Education

The Self-Motivation Facet in Leadership and Education

Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 15
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-8327-3.ch004

Abstract

This chapter depicts how leaders promote the self-motivation facet in their leadership by leading with courage, practicing continuous improvement, dedication, and hard work, and by being resilient. In addition, this chapter also discusses how educators promote the self-motivation facet in their classrooms by continuous improvement, dedication, hard work, and resiliency, and how they can embrace their roles as leaders in the classroom. Finally, this chapter also presents positions of those who oppose the promotion of the self-motivation facet by leaders and educators.
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Introduction

Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens. -J. R. R. Tolkien

Each of us has had times in our lives, when we want to give up, because our goal is difficult to achieve, because we do not want to do something any longer, or because we are afraid that we may fail. However, like the train in the infamous children’s novel The Little Engine that Could®, we keep telling ourselves to persevere when things get rough and to overcome obstacles set in our path so that we can achieve our goals. We do this through the facet known as self-motivation, which is extremely important for leaders and educators alike, because leaders and educators must persevere so that their students and followers can also persevere, since the emotions of the leader or educator affect his or her followers and students respectfully (George, 2000).

Petrides (2009a) defines the self-motivation facet as the ability of an individual to be “driven and unlikely to give up in the face of adversity” (p. 14). Petrides (2009a) argues that those with high scores on the self-motivation facet are “driven by a need to produce high quality work. They tend to be determined and persevering” (Petrides, 2009a, p. 60), and “they do not need to be externally rewarded for their efforts because they have a strong sense of achievement and are motivated from within” (Petrides, 2009a, p. 60). Self-motivated individuals have an internal locus of control, feel as if they are in charge of their own lives (Lamberton & Minor, 2010), they also enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done (Bass & Bass, 2008), they strive for continuous improvement, and are generally unhappy with the status quo (Bass & Bass, 2008).

Consequently, this chapter will meet the following objectives:

  • Determine how leaders promote the self-motivation facet in their leadership by investigating courage, continuous improvement, dedication and hard work, and resiliency.

  • Discover how educators promote the self-motivation facet in their classrooms by utilizing continuous improvement, dedication, hard work, resiliency, and how they can embrace their roles as leaders in the classroom.

  • Give credence to the positions of those who disagree that leaders and educators should promote the self-motivation facet.

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Self-Motivation In Leadership

Leadership is hard, there is no doubt about that, but one of the unique challenges leaders face is being able to not only motivate others, but also to motivate themselves, for if a leader is apathetic, their followers will become apathetic as well (George, 2000). Consequently, self-motivation is crucial for leadership, since a common adage suggests that one must lead oneself first before leading others. In the subsequent sections, the author discusses the ways that leaders practice the self-motivation facet, which include (1) courage, (2) continuous improvement, dedication and hard work, and (3) resiliency, with support from the scholarly literature.

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