Video – The Three Factors That Motivate People

23 July 2010 Categories: Effectiveness

The video below is a nice animation of a lecture by Dan Pink. It talks about the things that motivate people, and especially knowledge workers (my wording). The interesting thing it reveals is that in activities that are highly cognitive (versus mechanical), it is not money that motivates us, but the following three factors:

  • Autonomy – the ability to be self directed, that is, control our activities rather than being managed.
  • Mastery – the urge to be better at stuff we do. The example given in the video is of people who play instruments just for fun, and not for money.
  • Purpose – making a contribution to something transcendent.

I think that the most interesting practical suggestion in the video is this:

Pay people enough so that monIey is not a consideration anymore, and then making sure the three motivation factors are satisfied.