How to drive yourself and others forward? Many organizations have accepted what Daniel Pink calls “motivation 2.0” which according to Pink has run its course and it’s time to move on to motivation 3.0. The difference? In motivation 2.0 the organization tries to find motivation from the outside with pay raises, rewards, punishments etc. where as in motivation 3.0 the organization harnesses the intrinsic motivation that is already within their employees.
Motivation 2.0 is a system that runs of sticks and carrots. It expects employees to be inherently unmotivated lazy slobs that need to be pushed towards either by greed or fear. It doesn’t however really sit well with nonroutine, creative work that is largely dependant on the employees talent, creativity and well, motivation. “If you need me to motivate you, I probably don’t want to hire you.” (Daniel H. Pink, 30) Most people don’t even want to be “motivated” and constantly directed from the outside, in fact the studies have shown that only about 20 % of people do.
That is not to say that extrinsic rewards or punishments don’t work at all. They do. The effects just are very short lived. They wear off and they quickly become a standard which people expect for their efforts and eventually you need more rewards to even maintain the current level of commitment. The other downside is that some performance related rewards cause people to steer away from the big picture and merely focus on filling their quota. For example: executives gaming quarterly earnings so they can get a performance bonus.
Downsides are many including diminishing performance and creativity and encouraging short-term thinking.
The correct way of using extrinsic rewards, according to Pink, would be to reward the effort rather than just the result. They should be unexpected and not the type of “if-then” which quickly becomes a standard, an expectation. The rewards don’t have to be money either. Often simple praise given in private works better than hard cash.
Motivation 3.0 is a system that encourages people’s desire to make decisions for themselves and for the good of the organization. It believes in the intrinsic motivation of the employee to be the best possible employee, not because they want to be rewarded or fear being punished, but because the job in itself is rewarding. For this to work the baseline has to be set high enough to satisfy the requirement for intrinsic motivation to exist in the first place. This means competent salary, management, workplace etc. but after all of these are taken care of, the manager should be able to trust the employee to do their best without bringing the whip to work.
Motivation 3.0 works especially well in nonroutine, creative work that can’t be done “by the book”. However, routines and uncreative tasks are often part of even the most fun jobs and sometimes these do require a bit of management. Thankfully Pink introduces a couple of ways to hang on to the employee’s intrinsic motivation even in the routine work.
- A mundane task can be made more interesting by giving a good rational reason for why it must be done. In fact, the mundane tasks could be absolutely crucial in the big picture – but people need to realize that.
- Offer some sympathy and possibly a “if-then” reward for performing it. Boring tasks are boring and it doesn’t hurt to acknowledge it.
- Give the employee as much leash as you can afford. Don’t control things you don’t need to control, it’ll make your work as a manager easier and it’ll help the employee to respect their work that much more. Allow people to complete the task in their own way.
- Involve people. Your employees have opinions as well and in most cases they already know how to improve their work performance – why not ask them. It’s much easier to get people committed to a goal they feel like they’ve set themselves.
- Don’t be bossy. Words carry a lot of weight, in the good and bad.
How to get the most out of a team? Begin with a diverse team and make the group a no competition zone. According to Pink pitting team members against each other in hopes of higher performance almost never works and almost always undermines intrinsic motivation. “If you’re going to use a c-word, go with “collaboration” or “cooperation.”
Shift tasks. It’s common in team work that some people get stuck with routine work because it’s just what they’ve always done. Let them taste the flow for a change as well.
And most importantly, motivate your team with purpose not rewards. “Nothing bonds a team like a shared mission” (Pink, 174)
I concur. Motivation 3.0 sounds like a much better system for a person like myself. The best way to kill my intrinsic motivation is to set a premise where I feel like my goals come from the outside and the autonomy has been minimized. And according to Pink 80 % of people feel the same way.
Lähteet: Pink, Daniel H. (2009): Drive