My son-in-law, Mason, has been working hard over the past seven months to get a promotion and raise.
His boss, Jim, has been encouraging him to do so.
In particular, Jim's been telling Mason about a new position that he thought Mason would be a great fit for - a Team Lead role.
Rocky Mountain High Mason's motivation, enthusiasm, and job-satisfaction have been at an all-time high.
He's been covering for others on vacation, putting in extra time on the weekend, and picking-up department initiatives that stalled before he joined the company, etc.
He's also told me things like: "I've finally found a company I'm excited to stay at for a long time." "It's so nice to be appreciated." "I feel like I've got a real career ahead of me."
He's been anxiously awaiting his annual evaluation, excited for his next step.
Low Rider His evaluation finally happened, having been rescheduled and postponed three times.
Mason was disappointed to hear that his raise was a lot less than he'd hoped.
Worse, with regard to the promotion his boss told him, "You're not quite there yet."
His boss then told him three things he needed to improve before to get the promotion.
Three things he'd never heard about before.
From Bad To Worse When Mason tried to negotiate for a better raise, regardless of the promotion, he was told: "Mason, there are people who've been longer than you that don't make that much. That wouldn't be fair to them."
Later, Mason told me, "He treated me like I was greedy, or trying to screw my co-workers. How am I suppose to know what they make, and why should it matter to me?"
It's not surprising that the day after the review, Mason's motivation had dropped from a 10 to a 1.
That since then, he's been surfing job boards.
Doing only what's in his job description.
Developed a 9-to-5, punch-the-clock mindset.
What's next for him? I'm not sure.
Part of me hopes he'll risk trusting his boss and company again, and put his whole heart into his job.
Part of me hopes he'll find a better place to work.
All of me is saddened that he went through this experience, and fearful that he'll not trust future bosses because of this.
The lesson It's easy to imagine that your demotivated people with "punch-the-clock that's not my job attitudes" are born that way.
They're not born - they are made.
They are made when bosses, companies, and environments demotivate them.
It also happens faster than you think. In this case, it took less than 30 minutes from motivation to go from 10 to 1.
What do you think? If you were Mason's boss, and you read this, what would you do?
Write me back, Marcus