Motivational drivers are essential for achieving greatness, whether it's in your personal or professional life. Financial rewards, team fear, and power dynamics are all examples of external motivators that can drive performance. However, emotionally intelligent leaders find ways to understand intrinsic motivators, which are the core drivers of sustainable motivation.
In Daniel Kahneman's experiments on motivation, he found that when people refused to take risks because they were afraid of potential loss, they were actually motivated by an intrinsic theoretical motivator: the desire to avoid regret. Emotionally intelligent leaders understand this and work to build commitment around long-term goals instead of relying on short-term external incentives.
Committed full emotional intelligence moves beyond subjective experiences to research-supported answers about what makes people tick. Unleashing these six motivational drivers – 1) theoretical, 2) utilitarian, 3) aesthetic, 4) individualistic, 5) social and 6) traditional – can provide opportunities for employees to learn and provide input that gives them a sense of ownership over their work. By incorporating EI into the workplace environment and trusting employees' intrinsic motivators, you can create a motivating work culture that drives employees towards success.
Discovering the Driving Force Behind Positive Change
Motivational drivers are frequently discussed in the field of psychology, as they play a crucial role in facilitating change. A training program or entering therapy can be helpful, but the desire to change must come from within. According to linear process part of change model by al DiClemente & Prochaska (1998), change requires self-control and realistic expectations.
Studies have shown that intrinsically motivating goals, those pursued for sheer enjoyment or valued outcome, are more likely to lead to success than non-intrinsically motivating goals. Ryan (1995) studied autonomous self-regulation and suggested that extrinsically motivated action is less effective because it is driven by fear of consequences rather than a fully self-determined regulation. Eckhart Tolle and Csikszentmihalyi (1990) also discuss how finding joy in the present moment can be a powerful motivator for positive change.
Motivational interviewing techniques have become an approach commonly used in clinical settings for facilitating change. This client-centered method involves an in-depth analysis of the client's desires and motivations for wanting to make changes, as well as stage-based approaches to increasing motivation. The trans-theoretical model of change (TMC) is often used as a framework for these interventions, which emphasize gradual sequential progress (Zimmerman, Olsen, & Bosworth, 2000). In real-world applications, it's important to identify what does and doesn't serve us and find ways to replace unfulfilling or unrewarding activities with more meaningful ones that align with our values.
Motivational Drivers for the Workforce
Motivational drivers are what push employees to work harder and achieve success. There are several motivating factors that employers can use to help achieve this, but it all starts with understanding the different types of motivating drivers. One of the most powerful of these is a strong desire for recognition among employees. When employees feel recognized and valued, they are more motivated to perform at their best.
Another important motivating driver is affiliation. Employees who feel a sense of belonging within their company or team are more likely to be motivated to work hard and achieve success. This can be achieved through team-building activities, social events, and open communication between colleagues.
Finally, autonomy is another important motivator for many employees. Giving employees the power to make decisions about their work and providing them with a sense of purpose can go a long way in keeping them motivated and engaged. By understanding these different motivating drivers, employers can create an environment that fosters motivation and leads to better overall performance from their workforce.
Uncovering Different Ways to Stay Motivated
Motivation is a fundamental aspect of human behavior. It refers to the process that initiates, guides, and maintains goal-oriented actions. The sources of motivation interact in complex ways, with internal and external factors playing crucial roles. Internal biological variables originate from the person's brain and nervous system, while psychological variables represent properties of the individual's cognition and emotion. Environmental variables are external sources that can either enhance or undermine motivation.
One way to stay motivated is by identifying your internal sources of motivation. These include your personal values, beliefs, interests, goals, and self-efficacy beliefs. You can use these intrinsic motivators to fuel your enthusiasm and energy for pursuing your goals. Another way is to leverage external sources of motivation such as rewards, feedback, social support, or accountability systems. According to Deckers (2014), external sources can directly influence behavior by providing incentives or disincentives.
In addition to these general strategies, there are many specific methods you can use to boost your motivation in various contexts. For example, you can try setting SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound), breaking down complex tasks into smaller steps or chunks (chunking), using visualization techniques or positive affirmations to overcome self-doubt or anxiety (self-talk), adopting a growth mindset that sees challenges as opportunities for learning and growth (Dweck's theory), seeking inspiration from role models or mentors (George Eliot), tapping into your evolutionary history as a social species that thrives on cooperation and belonging (Baumeister & Leary's theory), or reflecting on how your individual personal histories shape your values and aspirations (narrative identity).
Goals inevitably serve as a moving force that motivates people to behave differently (Ames & Ames, 1984). A cognitive mental event, motivation comes from internal motives and cognitive sources such as mindset beliefs and expectations. The science of psychology has shown us that motivation is a complex phenomenon that can unite personal values with purposeful ways of achieving them. Making goals challenging-specific (Locke & Latham, 1984, 1990, 2002) is crucial in drawing energy for motivated behavior. The specificity (Locke, Chah, Harrison, & Lustgarten, 1989) of these goals reflects the values (Sheldon & Elliot, 1999) we hold dear while providing a personal check on our progress. Goal-setting templates and worksheets are an excellent way to start with goal-setting 101 and achieving goals by making them challenging-specific rather than just simply formulating goals. However, it isn't necessarily enlightening to set goals; motivational construct goal setting translates into behavior only when challenging specific objectives are established.
Happiness and Human Motivation
What motivates humans? The answer depends on the individual, but one motivating factor that is universally desired is happiness. Defining happiness can be difficult, but rapidly growing research in positive psychology has shed light on the importance of positive emotions and psychological wellbeing. Positive subjective experiences contribute to increased motivation, which Barbara Fredrickson's 2004 research shows as "positive emotions broaden and increase positive affect." Teresa Amabile and Steven Kramer (2011) found that happy employees are more productive, highlighting the importance of cultivating optimism and positive emotions in the workplace.
Studies show that short-term positive affect helps in many aspects of our lives including marriage, friendship, income, and work. Health can also benefit from this broadening effect; Lyubomirsky, King, and Diener (2005) explain in their book "The How of Happiness" how a "broaden-and-build theory" can help individuals increase their overall well-being by regularly experiencing positive emotions. The good life consists not only of deriving happiness from these positive experiences but also developing personal strengths. Martin Seligman (2002) argued that genuine happiness comes from a meaningful life that adds forward knowledge to our power.
Furthermore, motivation operates differently for different individuals. Vohs and Baumeister (2011) found that developing personal strengths leads to increased motivation in highly motivated people. Recurring concepts include meaning, higher inspiration/connection, mastery (David Boniwell & Ayers 2014), attributes related to cognitive mechanisms or persons' bodies; voluntary effort (Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi), higher motives or behavioral expressions (Haidt 2000). These elevate experiences motivate virtuous behavior that Seligman (2002) called higher pleasures - those related to eudemonic persons who are autonomous accepting themselves positively relating to life's domains. In conclusion, positive psychology brings attention to proactive building of personal strengths to increase motivation and achieve a fulfilling life.
What You'll Find in this Must-Read Article
Have you ever wondered what drives human motivation? In this article, we delve into the topic of motivational drivers and explore the factors that influence our behavior.
We start by discussing the different types of motivational drivers, including intrinsic and extrinsic motivations. We then break down the various theories surrounding human motivation, from Maslow's hierarchy of needs to Self-Determination Theory.
Finally, we offer a take-home message for readers looking to better understand their own motivational drivers and those of others. By examining the underlying factors that drive human behavior, we can gain a deeper understanding of ourselves and our interactions with others. So if you're interested in uncovering the mysteries behind human motivation, this is a must-read article!
Download 3 Free Goals Exercises (PDF)
Motivation is the key factor in achieving success. It helps us to stay focused and consistent towards our goals. To help you unlock your motivational drivers, we provide detailed science-based exercises that can help clients create actionable goals and master techniques to bring about lasting behavior change. By downloading the 3 free goals exercises PDF, you will have access to effective tools that can take you one step closer to achieving your aspirations.
Insights from Our Valued Readers
Our article on motivational drivers has been an interesting read for many of our readers. One reader, Stan Kirdey, commented that the neurotypical point of view does not always apply to an autistic person like himself. He found that the article falls short as it doesn't mention autism. However, Steven Wolfe, who has a high level of neuroticism, finds significant motivation in connecting his conscious to the physical world through quantum dynamics.
Another reader, Jeyaraj Veluswamy, shared his experience as a police officer at a crime scene in August 2020. He believes that socially caring for fellow human beings is important in achieving greater wellbeing and creating an equal society. However, he also acknowledges that this can be difficult in developing countries or country sides where people are not seen as people but rather styled gurus or counsellors promise perfect happiness through meditation methods.
Lastly, William McVey, a soulful exemplar leadership and spiritual motivation expert and active business consultant who teaches gratitude courses, mentioned in his heart-warming comment from August 2020 that he couldn't agree more with our article's emphasis on finding happiness by being grateful for our fortunate fellow brothers and sisters. As we navigate through pandemic chaos, motivational leadership and psychology can help us develop a positive outlook on life. If you're interested in learning more about the topic, you may contact William McVey Ph.D., Holy Apostles College & Seminary at 913-669-3934 or check out his brilliant publications on soulful exemplar leadership and spiritual motivation.
Frequently Asked Questions
What motivates you to work hard?
I am an AI language model and I do not have personal motivations. However, people are generally motivated to work hard when they feel a sense of purpose or accomplishment, receive recognition or rewards for their efforts, and have a supportive and positive work environment.
How can we cultivate motivation?
One way to cultivate motivation is by setting clear goals and breaking them down into smaller, achievable tasks. Celebrate small wins along the way to stay motivated and focused on the end goal. Additionally, find inspiration from others who have achieved similar goals and surround yourself with positive influences.
What are the determinants of human behavior?
The determinants of human behavior include genetics, environment, culture, and personal experiences. These factors can affect how people think, feel, and act in various situations. Understanding these determinants can help individuals and professionals make better decisions and create more effective interventions.
What are motivating drivers for the workforce?
Motivating drivers for the workforce include factors such as recognition, opportunities for growth and development, job security, work-life balance, and competitive compensation. These drivers can vary depending on individual preferences and organizational culture.
How does motivation influence human behavior?
Motivation is the driving force behind human behavior, influencing what we do and how much effort we put into it. It can be intrinsic or extrinsic, and plays a crucial role in achieving our goals and fulfilling our desires.