Being a business psychologist workplace motivation has intrigued me for over two decades. What we think logically should be a source of motivation isn’t always the case. Career analyst Dan Pink has examined the puzzle of workplace motivation in his book Drive. Dan reveals a fact that many social scientists know but most managers don’t: that the traditional carrot and stick approach to workplace motivation using rewards and incentives to incourage a specific performance aren’t always as effective as we think. Listen for some very intriging research and findings presented by Dan in the video below and maybe find way forward for you and your business:
TEDTalks are an excellent series of videos and video podcast of the best talks and performances from the TED Conferences. TED conferences showcase the world’s leading thinkers. TED stands for Technology, Entertainment, Design, and TEDTalks cover these topics as well as science, business, development and the arts. You can catch more TED videos at http://www.ted.com/
Whilst I was researching workplace motivation I came across a video produce by PBSNews – What drives motivation in the modern workplace? – that illustrates further some of Dan Pink’s points. The most interesting for me is that the higher the incentives and rewards the longer the solution takes which has a potential impact for businesses who only offer financial incentives. The video below shows how creative thinking can be best motivated by more human motivation as money tends to narow vision rather than expand a persons thinking and performance. The PBSNews story shows how some industries (e.g. System Sources) have found that sales can increase where traditional motivation is removed (e.g. incentives and bonuses). Barry Schwart, psychologist, states in the video below that money can disconnect a workforce from their activity. This is believed to be at the heart of the recent economic downturn as bounses fostered a climate of short termism – where traders were only interested in looking good for the next quarter and not necessarily considering the consequences further on down the road.
Consider the recent successes of Firefox and Wikipedia (open source projects) where individuals have chosen to work for free. In this context people have worked to receive global acknowledgement, praise and a sense of purpose. They have worked with people that they like and share a common goal with. This is not to say that money is not important – it is. However, money in and of itself does not necessarily motivate people in the way that traditionally it was thought to. Few artists become artists because that want to make money they become artists because they love what they do. Most of the people who contribute to open source projects like Firefox and Wikipedia have day jobs, but they turn to other outlets for a sense of automony, to have an opportunity to do interesting work, to get better at the work and to contribute to the world.
I wanted to write this post to share the findings of Dan Pink and many psychologists to incourage you to run your business inline with what the science says about workplace motivation. Remember that in puzzle where money was a motivator it took people 11 minutes to solve the puzzel and when no money was used to incentive people the solution was discovered solution faster in 7.5 minutes. So to succeed in todays economy we might find out what lights our fire within.
I help my clients to succeed by using a number of effective techniques to connect them with their desires and help them to attain their goals faster than if they worked on them on their own. If you would like me to help you attain your goals then contact me today for free consultation.
I hope that you got value from this post.