Challenging Behaviorist Dogma Myths About Money and Motivation The article I reviewed and will analyze is by Alfie Kohn. It is about how people are motivated in the workplace and what really makes people want to work harder for their employer. There are many misconceptions about this and the article covers each of them and the theorists behind the thoughts of what actually motivates people to work harder. The key issues in the article are; does money matter to most people, does it motivate, what the research says, and, what does it all mean? I will analyze each issue and respond accordingly. The first question posed in the article is whether or not money matters.
The idea that dangling money and other goodies in front of people will “motivate” them to work harder is the conventional wisdom in our society, and particularly among compensation specialists. In the workplace, numerous studies have shown that when people are asked what is most important to them about work, money ranks well behind such factors as interesting work or good people to work with. (Interestingly, when managers are asked what matters most to their employees, they tend to rank money at the top of the list-and then proceed to manage on the basis of that error. ) (Kohn) This does not mean that money does not matter to people, but rather, it is to offer an alternative to the declaration that most people are actually motivated by money to improve work ethics. This is one of the first assertions that supposedly justifies manipulating people with incentives. I agree with the author wholeheartedly on this subject because I know in the businesses I have been involved in financial incentives might produce more production, but the quality suffers and the workforce is not really any more satisfied.
Motivation in the Workforce Managing employees is cited as being the biggest problem to small business owners. This is because employers very often don't know how to handle employees. Effectively managing employees is a skill acquired through training and practice. Many books have been written on the subject, and courses are regularly offered through educational institutions. Motivation theories ...
The next question refers to whether money actually motivates employees to improve the work quantity and quality. The use of money for getting people to do something works well, but on the other hand, it does not make people “want” to do something. The author asserts that the seminars and articles regarding how to motivate employees, should be avoided because he feels that the prescriptions these exhort only attempt to control people and can actually make things worse in the long run. Mr. Kohn also touches on the difference between intrinsic motivation, that is where the task itself is appealing, and extrinsic motivation, or where the task is just a means to an end, a prerequisite for receiving a reward or avoiding a punishment. He says the question then becomes not “how motivated are the people at our organization “, but “how are people motivated?” The author believes that it is not the amount of motivation that matters, but what type.
Hence, someone could be motivated by money, however, this would probably create a major problem, a motivational orientation that isn’t associated with a high quality of work or quality of life. (Kohn) I agree with the author in the assertion that money may motivate someone to do something, but it will not make them enjoy what they are doing or improve their overall performance. There is some evidence that suggests that the more you use rewards to “motivate” people, the more they tend to lose interest in whatever they had to do to get the rewards. At least 70 studies have found that rewards tend to undermine interest in the task (or behavior) itself; this is one of the most thoroughly replicated findings in the field of social psychology Studies that have examined this question directly have repeatedly shown that the more salient or reinforcing the reward is, the more it erodes intrinsic interest.
... Reward Employees." What we want-more than anything else--is recognition. This contention has been proven in numerous studies. The best way to motivate people ... you will create confusion, not motivation. Nelson puts recognition rewards into three categories: 1) Informal rewards, including no-cost and low-cost ... all want and need? Well, yes, obviously.We all need money. And there is and always will be a ...
(Kohn) I have mixed feelings about his statement that seminars and articles on how to motivate should be avoided. I have attended motivational seminars and read articles on how to motivate employees. It is true that some use money as an incentive or other rewards, but many do teach that motivation comes from making people feel as though they have a stake in whatever they are doing, thus, it is more meaningful to them to do a good job. Finally the last question posed is “What does it all mean?” The author suggests that to motivate by making an employee feel like they belong and to create a workplace that is collaborative and feels like a community is about “working with.” The rewards and punishment is seen as “doing to”, and they are basically “control through seduction.” I agree with this argument because I also believe if a workplace is enjoyable and everyone feels like they are apart of the organization and not just manipulated they produce better, long-lasting results. As a final thought Mr.
Kohn says “the problem isn’t with the dollars themselves, but with using dollars to get people to jump through hoops. He closes by saying he practices and is very familiar with three basic beliefs. They are; Pay people well, pay people fairly, and do everything possible to take money off peoples minds. He then uses an excellent analogy and example of a company that practices that philosophy and is extremely successful. I agree with the authors overall philosophy and that compensation must be fair and if you treat people fairly and justly, most of the time, they will give you their best. In my experience, there have been many times when managers and business owners tried to use money to provide incentives for their employees only to be sorely disappointed.
I have also seen people use, and have used myself other types of incentives, such as praise and seemingly small insignificant things to motivate a workforce with great results. I believe that these concepts can work in any organization if given the chance. References: Kohn, A. (1998), Compensation and benefits review, March/April 1998, Challenging Behaviorist Dogma: Myths About Money and Motivation, retrieved June 21, 2003, from the World Wide Web: web.
Privacy Rights The privacy of the individual is the most important right. Without privacy, the democratic system that we know would not exist. Privacy is one of the fundamental values on which our country was founded. There are exceptions to privacy rights that are created by the need for defense and security. When our country was founded, privacy was not an issue. The villages then were small and ...