Motivation-we’ve all heard the pros and cons of the “carrot” and “stick” methods, but there may be more to the story than what we were taught to believe.
If you are an entrepreneur you most likely have some kind of a team, even if it is a virtual team. One of the key aspects of developing a strong team, and for yourself, is motivation.
I have known a number of photographers since high school, and something I observed in most of them over the years was the change that took place when they began to do their craft in exchange for money. Quite a few became wedding photographers which can be quite demanding, although it pays quite well. What I observed is most began to hate photography.
So what happened? They were doing what they loved, right? And they were getting rewarded for it, right?
Studies have shown the same type of reaction in children that were given rewards for doing something that they really loved to do, like coloring. What happened was as they were expected to perform and then rewarded with a toy or other desired object, they began to lose interest in what they had once enjoyed.
Their passion became a job!
What once thrilled them, became expected and demanding and the reward actually became a detriment towards motivation. It literally zapped all the joy out of their passion!
So what’s the answer?
From what I observed with my photographer friends and with my tech guys in my software business was once their financial needs were met, what really fueled them were things that fostered their independence and creativity. They needed to be free to let their creativity flow in their own way.
And yes, we’re talking about business so there are objectives and guidelines that have to be met and followed, but there are SO many ways that goals can be met. When I’ve afforded myself and others the freedom to produce the end result in our own way, I’ve been amazed at the outcome!
I think we really need to look at the difference between motivation and rewards and make sure that we are achieving our desired results. We may be doing just the opposite and crippling ourselves.
For more info on new ideas on motivation read: Daniel Pink’s, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us