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During the holiday season, we reflect on the year that has passed and make grand plans for the coming year.

In my position, I’m blessed to be part of the growth of many companies, teams and agents as they put their plans into action. I’ve found that the very reason people succeed is because they have a core motivating value, or a “why”—that underlying thing that drives them, that gets them to do the difficult things and allows them to find solutions to tough problems. At a recent mastermind of elite agents, I was asked a very interesting question: “When do you know you have enough money?”

As we see agents grow from making $100,000 to over seven figures, their lives are changed—and so are all of the families they serve in this great industry. But when posed with the question about knowing when you have enough money, I asked the leaders in the room to share with me why they work. Why do they leave their families and go to the office every day? Why do they work weekends and evenings, skip vacations and push themselves so much? The answers were interesting, as well as humbling.

At first, we received what I like to call the standard answers, because that’s what they thought I wanted to hear. These answers focused on the fact that they really love people, that they love helping homeowners find their next house, that they need money to pay the bills.

As I dug deeper, the answers became more real, more authentic. One agent said she works because she wants to be in a position to mentor other women who don’t believe they have value or opportunities to make something of their lives because they’ve been verbally or physically abused. Another said that he works so that he can go to third-world countries every year with his family and help bring water to villages and make a real impact by bringing them something we all take for granted. One grandmother said she works because it keeps her young, and she wants to have money to spoil her grandkids.

While the answers varied from person to person, the thing these leaders have in common is that they work because they want to make a difference in other people’s lives. We’re in the greatest industry in the world, where our hard work is traded for opportunities to make money, and if you do the business right, a lot of money. But that’s not why we do it. It’s not the money itself, but rather, what having money has the potential to do in our lives—and the lives of people we care about.

When we take the time to identify our “why” and go deeper to determine if it’s real, it creates a new resolve, as well as a clarity of focus. It also provides your coach the ability to remind you of why you do the hard things.

If you don’t have a “why,” or you’re struggling to find one, put some time aside to volunteer with an organization that’s focused on making a difference in your community. They need leaders like you more than the money you would donate, so give them your most valuable asset. Give them your time. As you volunteer and give, you’ll find the joy that comes from making a difference, and, in the process, develop a “why” that’ll serve your hunger for success.

Verl Workman is the founder and CEO of Workman Success Systems (385-282-7112), an international speaking, consulting and coaching company that specializes in performance coaching and building successful power agents and teams. Contact him at For more information, please visit