Personal Satisfaction The Best Motivator

What motivates a person to do a good job? Or to go the extra mile for no extra pay? John Katzenbach author of Why Pride Matters More Than Money, takes a look at what does and does not motivate employees. He combines 40 years of experience with hundreds of interviews to develop his views on successful motivation.

Team-building junkets don’t work, nor do positive-attitude lapel buttons. People do value the chance to earn a good living, but Katzenbach says they thrive when they find personal satisfaction in their work. In other words, the best motivator is pride, not pay. Successful motivation requires careful thinking about how to encourage people to accomplish things that make a difference, and how to tailor incentives to individuals.

The motivational culture must begin with the frontline worker. A recent study done for a professional services firm asked employees to rate the importance of various factors to their job satisfaction. Then they asked managers to predict employee responses. These bosses greatly underestimated the effect of a lack of challenging work and recognition.

Take these examples under consideration when taking steps to improve motivation in your own department. If you haven’t been recognizing people and promoting their pride in work, it’s not too late to change. Think about it now.

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