The Surprising Science of Motivation

Brilliant TED talk with Dan Pink discussing the disconnect between what we know about the science of motivation, and what business actually apply.

The talk argues that  the traditional “carrot and stick” model of rewards and penalties work fine where tasks are simple and well defined, but are crippling to creativity and innovation. Dan proposes a new model based around the desire to do things “because they matter, because we like it, because they’re interesting, because they are part of something important” – pretty cool stuff.  As case studies, he highlights Atlassian’s FedEx Days (and recent adoption of Google style 2o Percent Time) and my personal idea of  utopia: the Results Only Work Environment (ROWE).

It is also worth noting that all of the best TED talks are available via RSS feed and are well worth the bandwidth to podcast.

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