The (Third) Drive

drive

Even though the complexity of things people do at work has greatly increased over the past few decades, the management of people is still pretty much stuck in the industrial age and keeps relying exclusively on rewards and punishments to achieve its objectives. While carrots and sticks might have been effective when humans performed routine tasks in the assembly line, the external motivators fail miserably when job descriptions become vague and results of people's work hard to predict. In his book Drive, Daniel H. Pink has collected a solid body of evidence that management in the 21st century should be primarily based on intrinsic motivation of people and not on outdated approached pioneered by F.W. Taylor and other management "gurus" born in the 19th century. According to Pink the essential ingredients of intrinsic motivation in people are autonomy, mastery, and purpose. While the desire of people to direct their own lives, the urge to make progress and get better at something that matters, and the yearning to do what we do in the service of something larger than ourselves are all noble objectives they require fundamentally different organizations than the ones we know today. The companies such as GitHub, Valve, and Netflix are the early examples of companies applying the new approach. Unfortunately, the amount of change required to organize around intrinsic motivation of people, assures that other companies will follow their suit only slowly. But the ones they do will have tremendous advantage in attracting top talent, especially among Millenials.

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