Memories Can Motivate

It is often said: “forget the past and focus upon the future!” In the practical world though, does this proverb really hold completely true? Well! It is my strong conviction
24 Dec 2016 11:00
Memories Can Motivate

It is often said: “forget the past and focus upon the future!” In the practical world though, does this proverb really hold completely true?

Well! It is my strong conviction fact that looking back at the past sensibly and smartly can motivate as well as empower us with strength and positive attitude to deal with the future challenges.

I believe that if we are able to awaken the Positive aspects of our Past then these memories themselves can act as motivators for our future!

Such memories especially have a special power; the power to Influence and Inspire the mind of the ‘Present’ to help it deal with the ‘future’. I wish to explain this with a real life example.


An example

The boardroom was full to capacity with all the senior management employees and along with them was the Head of Sales along with his team of Sales executives.

The atmosphere seemed a bit gloomy, not because of the rainy weather outside but more so because of the atmosphere of depression and disappointment.

This was due to an extremely poor performance by the sales team, which is why they were asked to be present in that room.

The team was aware of what was expected… a barrage of aggressive and acerbic comments, scoldings and extremely critical observations regarding their poor performance!

The CEO and the Chairman were yet to arrive for the meeting and everyone in the room was predictably nervous to say the least.

“It is inevitable! Today is going to be a day where I probably will be either asked to leave this organisation or firmly requested to tender my resignation,” the Head of Sales was seen whispering to one of his junior colleagues.

“This organisation has never seen this kind of sales decline ever and it has happened now under my leadership. I just hope that the humiliation gets over soon.”

The door of the boardroom opened and one of the people from the Human Resources department walked in with an LCD Projector and after placing it upon the table he connected it to his laptop.

He then went ahead and opened up the ‘Viewing screen’. Most of the people there were watching this with a bit of surprise.

“Is this going to be some audio visual presentation or more appropriately a dressing down of the sales team?”asked one of the senior managers from the Production team who was also present there.

At that moment the door of the Boardroom again opened and entered the chairman, Harman Patel and following him was the chief executive Vakoo.

“Good morning everyone! How are you all?” Mr Patel exclaimed energetically to all the people present there!!!

Most of them were a bit taken by the manner in which he greeted them as they were expecting a more somber and almost a depressed expression rather than an enthusiastic one!

Both of them seated themselves and the CEO, Mr Vakoo then politely instructed the Mr Nair, the person from the Human resource department to begin.

“Begin what” that was the mental expression in the minds of most of the people in that room.

Mr Nair nodded in the affirmative and proceeded forward to turn on the laptop and the LCD.


The concise video

Just before the pictures began to get displayed the chairman, Mr Patel requested to speak a few words and then addressed the people who were seated in the room.

“I know dear colleagues with what expectation all of you have come to this meeting, especially the people from the sales team!” he said.

“I know you may have already predicted certain things from us after the highly disappointing results.

“Having said this I want to show you something through a concise ‘video’!”

Saying this he looked towards Mr Nair and indicated to him to start the video.

The lights in the room were dimmed and the play button was pushed and the video started to play.

In that ten-minute video, the major achievements achieved by the Sales team from the previous six months were displayed in great detail.

After the completion of the video a series of pictures were also shown of the numerous celebrations when the same sales team had ‘Over-achieved’ their expected targets.

And finally another small video clip was shown to the entire audience about the time when the same sales team was adjudged and selected as the best team from across all the sales teams from various organisations through the entire region of Fiji!


The bosses take the stage

The entire video ended and as the lights brightened up, the Chairman and the CEO got up from their chairs and the Chairman began addressing specifically the Sales team.


Some of the members of the Sales team including the Head of Sales were literally moved to tears!

They were not able to control their emotions and it was understandable as they probably never expected what they saw in that video.

And then the final words from the Chairman himself where he expressed his belief in them despite the present failure!

Rather than getting reprimanded and humiliated by the senior management something totally different had happened.

They were rather reminded, through photographs and video clips, of what they had accomplished in the recent past.

In a way they were also reminded of their amazing potential and positive abilities!

Spontaneously everyone stood up and gave the sales team a rousing applause. When the vibrations of their passionate claps had pleasantly faded down the Chairman continued to address everyone.

“Dear colleagues of mine, I have always believed that our sales team is a special one and they have proved that they all are amazing in their attitude toward achieving their targets passionately,” he said.

“I know that this particular sales result was extremely poor and much below the expectations.

“I got to understand from the other colleagues of mine that the entire team of Sales is completely demoralised and stressed by their performance or rather the lack of it.

“Even the other departments and functions in the organisation seemed to have become disappointed with the Sales Team.

“Having said this I believed in them and I still believe in them because I have seen their intensity and inspiration with which they have worked successfully in the past.

“Hence, rather than giving them a scolding and harsh words, I though it better not just to give some kind of a motivational talk but to go step further and show them what they have achieved and can accomplish in the future.

“I wanted to in a way, “ACTIVATE THEIR MEMORIES’ about their capabilities and competencies with which they can focus positively upon the future targets!

“It could have been very easy for me to criticize the Sales team and humiliate them about dismal failure but then that would have been completely detrimental and negative to the growth and the future of the organisation.

“Scolding them was never the answer to their failure. What I believe in is that Positive Memories can act as extremely Practical Motivators for future performance.

“I wanted to remind them and hence this particular set of video clips and pictures were shown to them as well as to all of you seated in this room so that you too would respect them for their overall performance and not just the present failure.

“After this meeting I will be sitting and interacting with each one of the sales people and together we will work out a powerful and proactive sales strategy for the future.

“As I conclude I want you all to remember something important. Crying over spilled milk is probably easy and justifiable.

“But wiping the floor quickly and then finding ways for the milk not to be spilled again in the future is much more important”.


The lesson learnt

Saying this he along with the Mr Vakoo left the room and as they left all the other seniors people in the room had learnt something new and positive.

They had learnt that ‘MEMORIES CAN MOTIVATE!

Mayur Kalbag is a Leadership Coach, Corporate Trainer & Author. He can be contacted via email:


Fiji Sun Instagram
Fiji Plus