Harvard Business Review's 'summer reading' (their big summer edition) has a big piece on motivation. Timely, as motivation can dip drastically in a downturn, with employees worried about their finances, their job and the future.
The piece draws on the trendy 'neuroscience of leadership' - using MRI scanners to see which areas of the brain light up to show activity and engagement - and says that there are four key drivers of motivation:
There was a survey of happiness at work. Orchestra members came second from the bottom, just above prison guards. Chamber musicians came top. What's the difference between chamber musicians and orchestra musicians?
Who has the football from the last pass Brett Farve threw in his NFL career? And a new Super Bowl ring?
It's the person credited with leading the Giants to the Super Bowl after a turn-around season.
And he never made a single play -- just a motivational speech.
In their book, Blue Ocean Strategy, W. Chan Kim and Renee Mauborgne talk about how to motivate the troops to execute a strategy. They discourage the traditional approach of creating grand strategic visions propagated by massive top-down mobilization initiatives that are very expensive and usually only inspire lip service.
Passion is usually a pretty desirable thing in employees and especially also in leaders (with the usual qualification of passion for the right thing).
I came across a neat paper recently from the Blanchard stable.
by Jim Taggart
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