We need to change how we label and practice motivation. Re-aligning our frameworks of and behaviors for motivation will have a profound impact on business, education and society. Highly credible research and great story telling from leading thinkers like Dan Pink, confirms emotional commitment as the fuel behind healthy and robust business environments that produce transformational and game changing innovation. Nothing great can happen unless people are deeply committed to making something come to life as a product, service or in “seizing their whitespace”. A lot has been written to cajole us and motivate us under the old framework, motivation 2.0, for what seems like an eternity. All of our social systems and organized life is governed by rewards and punishments developed a long time ago, which like an old OS, runs poorly. This is why many companies are finding it difficult to unlock their latent value. For those who realize how valuable (even a small) group of deeply committed people are, in achieving hard to reach goals, know that the soft side, is not so soft after all. In fact, emotional commitment is what fuels big wins. Each win, each innovation require deep focus and passion for something better. What is the fuel?
A desire for … Autonomy, to be self directed, “get out of my way so I can create something”.
A desire for … Mastery, “the urge to be better at stuff”.
A desire for … Purpose = Challenge + Mastery + Making a Contribution.
It will be some time before most organizations discover how to do this well. In the meantime there are some (few) who do this very well. The faster you get how this works and bring it to your company, the sooner you will have a true 21st century competitive advantage.