motivation


“Why We Work”

I just finished reading a book entitled, “Why We Work” by Barry Schwartz. The book has three core messages that really resonated with me: – The evidence that purpose is the primary motivator of behaviors is overwhelming – The conventional wisdoms that formal, particularly financial incentives are the primary motivator of behavior is wrong and […]


How to motivate your employees

We write a lot about the importance of motivation and why it’s imperative that leaders know how to motivate their staff members. This article on LinkedIn by Richard Jongsma offers some helpful reminders on how to effectively motivate people. We can all use some reminders from time to time, right? Here are a few of […]


The not-so-secret secret of extraordinary motivation

I saw an interesting article in The New York Times called “The Secret of Effective Motivation” that presents research comparing the impact of “internal” vs. “instrumental” motivation. Internal motivation is a lot like having a purpose to achieve something of greater social good. Instrumental translates into being driven by external rewards. According to the authors […]


A look at motivation in language acquisition 1

An article in the Guardian posed the question: What motivates us to learn language? I was curious to see if the same motivators that exist in the workplace are present in language acquisition. John Schumann, a professor at UCLA, specializes in how people learn languages and the associated neurobiology. “Integrative motivation is the motivation to […]


The real cause of employee turnover 2

Why do employees leave? Most companies don’t want to face the answer, so they don’t collect data from outgoing employees beyond the usual exit interview. I can tell you from our experience working with companies that the primary cause for employee turnover is bad management. In the article “8 Questions You Need to Ask to […]


Find your greatness: Join me in Lake Oswego, Oregon

On Tuesday, January 28 at 7 p.m., I’ll present “Finding Your Greatness: What Research on Top Performers in Organizations Tells Us About Personal Success” at the Lake Oswego (Oregon) Public Library. People who have a compelling purpose that’s focused on creating social good are consistently more effective and content than others. In my presentation, I’ll […]


More on “give and take” by Adam Grant

By William Seidman I’m still thinking about this interesting book. It’s deservedly gotten a lot of press and is in the top ten on bestseller lists for business books. “Give and Take” by Adam Grant  is about “reciprocity styles.” Basically, this refers to how people interact with others. The central model is that there are […]