Transformers – more than meets the eye? What’s your motivation?

Posted on 9 Mar ’15

Finding motivation can be a constant struggle when it comes to work, but it can be a little easier when you find your motivators.

A motivator is something that keeps you charging full steam ahead at your job when there’s work to be done. Motivators can depend on the person, and can be anything from a good challenge, to recognition, or even the obvious, like money. They keep us moving along day in and day out. If you know what your motivators are, then you are leagues ahead of everyone else, if you can take advantage of them.

A motivator is something you look forward to doing, supercharges your energy levels when doing it, and you can only glow when you talk about it.

So what is your motivator?

Motivation and being interested in what you are doing is a fascinating topic, and as an engineer, I find myself asking that question now and then, especially in a largely management consulting role. Obviously, the answer in my case was I found a role that motivates me, in the same way I was motivated to become an engineer.

It’s an interesting question, and I often find that a lot of my inspiration and motivation can be found or explained in niknaks I keep on my desk.

Sounds strange right, but let me explain.

Transformers – more than meets the eye?

I am the proud owner of Starscream, the winged Transformer (although a baddie in the animations). Here he is sitting on my desk by my office window at home.


I was gifted Starscream as a birthday present back in 1993/1994 – I was still in primary school trying to figure out the world.

It’s funny to think that I’ve kept Starscream on my desk for more than 21 years now.

The reason why Starscream is still sitting on my desk is because it is one of my motivators. It is a part of my life that fundamentally changed the way I saw the world more than 21 years ago and still had a profound effect on me every time I pick it up.

Starscream to me is more than just a toy, it was more than just a transformer, it was a complex, it was amazing, it was genius tech, and I had this overwhelming urge to understand how it worked, and how it was put together. I needed to know how these few pieces of plastic, can go from a standing character to a supersonic jet with only a few screws and joints.

To this day, I have taken Starscream apart and put him back together again hundreds of times. You can tell exactly where my aptitude for engineering came from, and my never-ending curiosity to learn about things, take them apart, and re-build them. How the sum of all these parts opened up an entire universe of possibility.

It is for this exact reason I keep Starscream in front of me.

So whenever I lack motivation, and need some inspiration, I pick up Starscream. Every time I handle him, transform him to a jet plane and back again, I get inspired. Everytime I take him apart I feel challenged and motivated. Everytime I put him back together, I can see endless possibilities.

So what is your motivator?

What motivates you? Do you have your own “Starscream”?


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