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New Book Argues That Freedom Makes Workers More Productive

I'm Asking: How Are You Rewarded at Work?

We’re all motivated by different factors when it comes to our jobs — gunning for a promotion, achieving a "personal best," or contributing to a team. But, according to one author’s research, one thing that doesn’t effectively motivate us is the traditional carrot-and-stick model.

In his new book Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, author Daniel Pink claims that the more freedom employees have, the happier, more creative, and more productive they’ll be. People respond best to feedback, he says, not to financial rewards and punishments — so if we’re told we’ve done something well, we’re motivated to keep doing it, and do it better.

I agree with Pink’s approach — for me, bonuses couldn’t make up for being stifled and micromanaged. Having the freedom to do a job the way I want to do it, and hearing from my boss that she appreciates my work, is more valuable to me than monetary rewards.

What motivates you to do your best work, and how does your current job reward you?

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sweetpeabrina sweetpeabrina 6 years
I'm a teacher and at my school, the administration gives a lot of verbal praise for a job well done. The PTA hosts about 4 luncheons per year of excellent food. There's also a Sunshine Committee that will give small gifts and notify the faculty of any exciting news (engagements, births, graduations, etc)
a1stbornunicorn a1stbornunicorn 6 years
I work at a Chick-fil-a in Lubbock, TX which is the #1 store in the nation right now in sales (no joke). We are also the only store to ever earn $6 million dollars in one year. Let me tell you, it was ROUGH. Nearly every crew member was pulling doubles and we were giving away tons of free food in the end to make our goal. Our owner kept us motivated by offering vacation hours when we beat records, even to part-time employees. He's also taking all of us out for a steak dinner party for our hard work.
bluebellknoll bluebellknoll 6 years
Money used to be a big motivator for me but now I focus on doing the best job I can. I figure that it keeps me ahead of the game. However, if I wasn't getting paid a decent would definitely be a motivator.
heatherhas heatherhas 6 years
The problem is that I am really not rewarded at all. And other than a pat on the back, I do not have the freedom to reward our employees.
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