Lost your Mojo? Used informally in business Mojo means ‘influence, especially magical power’ [https://www.vocabulary.com/dictionary/mojo]. Regaining your Mojo means regaining your confidence, energy, enthusiasm, with a consequent increase in influence. [For a definition of influence see https://snelgrove.co.nz/why-is-being-influential-important/ ]
A powerful way to regain our Mojo is by reflecting upon what energises us and with some creativity, figuring out how we are able to do more of that in our role. This can be through fine-tuning ‘the how and the who’ of our role activities to be more in keeping with our talents, joys and values. Clients usually report they get a sustained energy boost along with a concerted momentum to act.
Why focus on our Mojo?
- I believe that Mojo is the ‘Strive’ part of Engagement as defined by Aon Hewitt, because it is the fuel for good energy and drive. Aon Hewitt’s reputable model of Engagement defines three elements: ’Say, Stay and Strive’ https://www.aonhewitt.co.nz/getattachment/77046028-9992-4d77-868a-32fbf622fec6/file.aspx]. The evidence around Engagement’s link to performance and company results is also well founded [https://www.business2community.com/human-resources/employee-engagement-important-insights-gallup-research-01197482]. Intuitively it makes sense that if we as leaders are engaged, then our staff will be too. We are typically engaged when we feel we are adding value to the organisation. It’s also likely that our role and its activities are playing to our strengths.
- In January, many Executives are so busy setting and / or reviewing business goals, we forget about fuelling ourselves to be at the top of our game and our performance. Being at the top of our game means we need to feed our own Mojo machine.
- February is a good time of the year to review our Mojo, because we’ve been back from our holiday for a couple of two weeks, which is long enough to become reacquainted with how strong (or not) our Mojo is.
- The other reasons to look at our Mojo at least yearly are:
- The context within which we operate changes
- Roles do morph
- We change as a result of experience in the role
- So it’s healthy to review our Mojo at least once a year and it has big benefits all round.
The Mojo Review
The Mojo Review is part of a suite of Career Effectiveness tools I have developed [https://snelgrove.co.nz/coaching-packages/]. It can be applied it to a wide range of roles, from Chief Executives to Team Leaders
In just 30 – 45 minutes we can find out whether we’re playing to our strengths, and what we need to do to build our Mojo.
Questions focus around what gives us energy as well as how we can fine-tune our role activities to be more in keeping with our talents, joys and values. The Mojo review is NOT a cherry-picking exercise, but an engagement review focussing on what we are striving to do in our role. It is also a way to gauge whether our role helps or hinders us from being at our best at work.
Here are the key questions we look at in our coaching conversation-with-legs:
Thinking of the activities in my role:
- Why does my role exist? (Typically it’s not what’s in our job description)
- How much time am I spending in the most critical activities of my role?
- What activities give me energy? What activities take energy away from me?
- What things come very easily to me and what do I enjoy doing? And the opposite?
- How much of my time am I actually spending on the things that I am talented at AND that give me energy?
- So, what is the degree of match between the role as I am doing it now and my strengths?
- What changes do I need to make to my role (‘fine-tune’) so I can do more of what I love?
- What activities can I empower others with?
When I ask Executives ‘how much Mojo do you have in your role and what can you do to play more to your strengths?’, they largely have not thought about it.
Then sometimes they answer, ‘I don’t have a choice, it’s my role’. Still others reply ‘I should be happy, I am successful. But I am not that happy’. When you delve a little deeper this is because the role and / or its activities are not inherently satisfying.
Of the many situations, I describe below Peter [pseudonym] a Senior Executive, with whom I have been privileged to work. Peter’s sponsor was very willing to pay for the coaching since they and Peter knew it would positively impact on his performance.
Peter was a Senior Category Manager of a considerably large food wholesaler and distributor.
The Mojo Review was the first time that he had ever put himself first and thought about what HE needed from a job without fearing what would happen to him and family if he left. As result of the Review, he retained a selection of the client visits as part of his schedule whilst growing his staff with the balance of client visits. In addition the process showed that to build his motivation and calm he needed to limit the amount of actual sales processing and analyses he directly did. This allowed staff to grow in their abilities with some mentoring from Peter.
He commented: ‘my destiny is what I needed to control! I’m now not too concerned with everything that is going on as there is only some stuff I have control over. I believe I can now stay upbeat no matter what structural changes may be in the future. I ensure the amount of work and home time is split fairly and this helps ensure I don’t revert back to “taking home a grumpy day” with me’.
For Peter, the process was a positive ‘life changer’. His productivity also noticeably improved and he was subsequently retained with the company as a result of the restructure.
By focussing on those key Mojo questions with an experienced coach, Executives feel a renewed sense of empowerment. In my experience, usually there are several changes in activities that can be put into action which are of mutual benefit to both the Executive and organisation. It’s about spending quality time on the topic with a ‘what is possible and co-creative’ attitude. And yes, the organisation does pay for it, not the Executive. This is because the employer knows they as well as the Executive will tangibly both win.
So spending a bit of quality time at least once a year on our Mojo is sure to pay off, both directly and indirectly. Our family will thank us for it too!