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Motivation, Often Talked About, Little Understood!

Motivation Defined

"The emotional forces, wants, needs, urges or drive within us that influence our behaviour" or a"willingness to exert high levels of effort conditioned by that efforts ability to satisfy some individual craving"

Needs, Wants, Urges Defined (how it all works)

Needs, wants, urges ( lets call them 'cravings'), are internal states that make certain outcomes appear attractive. When a craving is not satisfied tension is created within, which in turn stimulates an urge or drive causing us to seek a solution to satisfy the craving and thus reduce our tension. This is similar to the craving a smoker experiences, particularly when trying to quit. Have you ever been enticed by the aroma of a chicken roasting, or meat sizzling on a BBQ, only to have your spouse say something like, "lets eat fish fingers and salad for dinner"? You might yield to the request however your tension level will have increased due to the unsatisfied craving for the chicken or BBQ'd meat.

What this means for Leaders

Successful leaders understand that their followers are also influenced by various states of tension and they are able to utilise the fact that when this tension is increased the followers will exert higher levels of effort as they attempt to reduce their tension levels. Obviously in a work situation managers (as leaders) ideally need to ensure that the individuals' cravings (needs & wants) and efforts, are in harmony with organisational goals.

Motivation Principles

* All human motivation is basically selfish, i.e. people do things for their reasons not ours.

* All people are motivated and they will continually move either towards or away from all propositions.

* You cannot motivate other people because all motivation comes from within.

* People's motivation is constantly changing in response to their ever-changing personal priorities.

* To utilize others motivation, find out what they want and why they want it and then convince them that you (and the actions or attitudes you are proposing) are their best chance of getting it.


Copyright Orglearn - Richard Townsend 2008-2014