What motivates you more – A passionate, clear, inspiring vision? Or satisfying a more mundane need?
All of us would like to think it's a passionate vision. Especially if we can see tangible, specific rewards.
But is that reality? What truly motivates people – I mean, really. That's the debate going on over at I2I Incentive Intelligence. Here's a recent post – Why Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose Isn't Enough. Author Paul Hebert has this to say:
There is a lot of discussion lately about the “new” paradigm of motivation for our employees. The discussion, driven by books such as "Drive" by Dan Pink and others before him, focus on the need to tap into a more noble vein and eliminate the plebian tools we used in the past, the awards and the incentives, and in their stead provide vision and direction but allow the individual to work autonomously, learn and grow and be part of a larger effort.
I get that and I agree with it. At a basic level this is good stuff. But in a day-to-day business world it may not be effective.
Strategic vision is important. Getting people aligned is important. But without incentives to really break behavioral inertial we’re doomed.
Hebert goes on to share this video from The Daily Show that goes directly to his point.
|The Daily Show With Jon Stewart||Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c|
|An Energy-Independent Future|
You just have to love Jon Stewart.
This is something to watch out for, especially if you're doing focus groups or other customer research. What people say motivates them, is not always what will get them to actually take action. What people say they will do is not always what they will actually do.
If you're interested in what motivates people, check out the Incentive Intelligence blog. They've got some of the best insight I've seen into what motivates employees and people in general.