Motives that Motivate

Motives that Motivate

Recently, we have been working to fulfill a number of intentions focused on engaging, recognizing, and developing employees. The sr4 team has considered how to effectively communicate the purpose of these programs within an organization. Opportunities for recognition, engagement and development have the potential to drive employee motivation and enable an organization to direct the efforts of employees towards the organization’s strategy, mission and vision.

So, what motivates? How can you recognize, engage and develop your team?

Part of developing an understanding of what motivates employees is appreciating that different things motivate different people. As simple as that sounds, motivation arises in different forms that directly affect engagement and, in turn, the overall success of the organization. Some people are motivated to work due to their own personal enjoyment of what they do - intrinsic motivation. While others thrive in environments that utilize rewards to encourage hard work- extrinsic motivation. Our research tells us that if an activity is incentivized through extrinsic reward, intrinsic motivation suffers.

Traditional extrinsic motivators like cash and travel perks, have shown to be successful to start. But what happens when an employee continually seeks this form of motivation? Relying only on extrinsic motivators sets an organization on an unsustainable path of future expenses and diminishing returns. Possibly more important, it devalues an appreciation for the process of everyday work. Placing value on an employee’s work and behavior develops sustained motivation within an organization.

We believe that intrinsic motivation and incentives are more relevant than ever to today’s workforce. Intrinsic motivation is the positive chargeone feels when fulfilling a purpose through self-management. Employees who engage in intrinsic motivation recognize the value they are contributing to their organization.  These individuals act autonomously, take ownership of their work and focus on accomplishing something towards the goals and strategy of their organization. Employees who are intrinsically motivated recognize their competency and progress, fostering a positive intra-personal experience. This phenomenon creates a cycle of personal fulfillment, increased engagement, and productivity. So, what motivates your team?