3 Forces of Intrinsic Motivation
What motives you?
Daniel Pink’s work on motivation is likely the most well known, the most quoted, and the most discussed in management circles. We tend to think that we are either motivated by a fear of punishment or the excitement of a reward; the positive and the negative, the carrot and the stick. All of these forms are extrinsic, and they work only in certain situations. In fact, rewards can backfire in certain situations.
Instead, Pink concludes that we are more motivated by intrinsic motivation, the desire to do things because they matter. This completely upends the traditional thinking about motivating behavior. We have a desire to be part of something important, something larger.
Pink argues that we are motivated by other forces: autonomy, mastery, and purpose.
Autonomy. This is the need to self-direct.
Mastery. This is the intrinsic motivation to get better, to master a skill.
Purpose. This is the ability to connect to a larger cause. And, according to Pink, it’s the highest form of motivation.
These 3 forces are especially powerful in motivating the knowledge workers and the creatives.
How are you using the shifting nature of work and the research on intrinsic motivation in your organization? Are you changing the way you incentivize employees?
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