Monday, February 15, 2010


I listened to the audio version of Dan Pink's new book "Drive - The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us." that currently has 4.5 stars from 54 Amazon reviewers. The author includes a couple videos on his web site about the book.

I was mildly bored by it, mostly because I'm already aware of the message. I've been reading for years about the very same academic research that he describes. So for me, Pink's "truth" is not "surprising."

Here are some of the points.

Carrots and sticks are outdated management tools and often actually reduce productivity and quality.

Intrinsic motivators are often more powerful than extrensic ones.

People naturally desire three things in their work:
Autonomy: People want to have control over their work.
Mastery: People want to get better at what they do.
Purpose: People want to be part of something that is bigger than they are.

The best way to motivate people engaged in creative tasks is to give them autonomy in "the 4 Ts": Task (what they do), Time (when they do it), Technique (how they do it), and Team (who they do it with).

I enjoyed Pink's earlier book "The Adventures of Johnny Bunko - The Last Career Guide You'll Ever Need" and this new one didn't match my expectations. I'll probably give away my audiobook.

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