“You don’t have to do anything but die.”
This rather blunt, but deceptively motivational statement was a frequent response from my high school coach whenever we felt too apathetic towards some practice drills or other. Do we we have to do sprints in the rain? Do we have to come in on Saturday? Do we have to… etc, etc. It was an effective motivator because the underlying message touched a competitive nerve: No, you don’t have to do anything, as long as you’re okay with failing miserably in front of a crowd of friends, parents, spectators and the opposing team. As a change management strategy, it turned a bunch of talented-but-unmotivated athletes into a winning team. Clever man, our coach.