An individual who cannot create the momentum to realise his dreams will not move forward or progress in his career.

Picture this, a state of the art racing car capable of running at dizzying speed and the power to burn the tracks will not move an inch unless a driver is behind the wheel to provide it the momentum it deserves. This is precisely the state of an organisation or an individual if they lack the momentum that will help them reach their full potential.

An individual who cannot create the momentum to realise his dreams will not move forward or progress in his career. He may have all the skills, talents and the ability to succeed yet the impetus to move ahead may be lacking. Opportunities and ideas will lack significance if one does not have the will to make the best use of them. Similarly an organisation with the best employees, products and goals will not reach the top unless its leaders provide that vital momentum that is required to reach there.

One of the prime momentum breakers is the past, though the past provides some lessons for the future, dwelling on past mistakes or what went wrong can prevent one from moving forward. On the contrary envisioning a bright future and having an optimistic attitude can create momentum.

Momentum also requires the right mental attitude to succeed. New, innovative ideas can create the right impetus. Passion and courage is required to convince others to believe in ones’ ideas and goals.

As an individual if you feel that your career is not moving in the right direction because it lacks momentum, then find the cause for it. This may be due to your procrastinating attitude, complacency or lack of will. Once you recognise them, make efforts to get over them.

To create the momentum, remind yourself of what you can achieve five years from now and what you can do to achieve them. Also imagine yourself not doing those things and the consequent regret that you will experience. This can be motivation enough to make a change.

It is important to know what you want from life so that you can create the initiative to take the next step. If you do not have a clear idea, take some time out to think and you may get that clarity you seek.

Once you know what your goals, see if you are excited about them. Excitement provides the impetus to take chances, explore your potential and outdo limitations. Then set deadlines, this helps to keep up the pressure and provides self-motivation to move ahead. With success your confidence increases and you are ready to move on to the next goal and consequently increase your momentum.

In an organisation the primary responsibility of building momentum in an organisation lies with the leader. The first step towards this is to create a clear vision statement. The goals may evoke some resistance from the team, this should not be treated as limitations and the leader should always set higher targets. This will inspire others. The vision statement should also include the promise for a brighter future; this will encourage employees to look ahead and avoid fixation with the past.

Creating momentum requires the leader to involve everyone in the team rather than work in isolation. This also means celebrating victories together and giving credit where it is due. A leader who inspires trust finds it easier to generate momentum in his team. The leader has to defeat the temptation to stick to the status quo and to play it safe.

In a downturn like the present, employees are panicky, worried and stressed out. In such a situation, the leader has to be cheerful, lift the spirits and hold out hope. Celebrating even small victories and injecting humour into everyday situations will help. The leader has to quell the defeatist attitude and pessimism in his team. His response to adversity determines the team’s attitude.

Conflicts in the team should be carefully handled and resolved amicably. All this is required to sustain the momentum.

Momentum is essential to move forward as an individual or as leader. So imagine yourself behind the wheel of that racing car and you are on an exciting ride with full control!

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