What Motivates People?

Woman helping another woman work out

Why do some people achieve more than others? Is it because they are more talented? Or are they luckier? These are questions that many people ask. One of the factors that distinguish the achievers from everyone else is their motivation.

Motivation drives people. It keeps them persevering on jobs until they reach the level they want in the workplace or achieve success in whatever they do.

Intrinsic Motivation

Simply put, intrinsic motivation is the inner drive brought about by an internal reward. The will to persevere arises from within a person and not the external punishment or rewards. People experience this because they are enjoying their job or see it as a means to self-actualization. The satisfaction and happiness in doing something is the end itself.

People driven by intrinsic motivation have a sense of meaning in their jobs or activities, and they feel that they are part of something bigger than themselves. Companies that nurture their employees to determine their best selves have lower turnover rates and perform better. Proper coaching, training, recognizing good work and other similar approaches create an environment ideal (but still imperfect) for intrinsic motivation in the workplace.

Extrinsic Motivation

Other than intrinsic motivation, other people motivate themselves in external rewards such as bonuses, fame and fortune and other similar success signifiers. Many companies use this strategy to drive performance and achieve the results they want from their employees. This comes in the form of long vacations, higher salaries, career advancement and high positions within the organization.

Extrinsic rewards have benefits in certain cases, such as:

  1. Reinforcing a certain behavior that is beneficial to a group
  2. A means of getting feedback about a task and determining if a person meets certain standards of performance.
  3. Motivating people to learn particular information or skills that are advantageous to the business

Extrinsic motivation is not less than its intrinsic counterpart. It is possible to combine both to achieve a goal.

Combining Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation

Both types of motivation have benefits. A company can use both to their advantage to bring out the best in their employees. Companies can use external rewards initially. When employees determine that the skills and experience required for a position will help them reach self-actualization, they might then transition into intrinsic motivation.

Bringing Out the Best in People

A couple working out together

Companies can bring out the best in their employees and inspire them through motivational talks made by professional athletes, who can be sourced by a sports speaker booking agency. The stories about their humble beginnings, how they persevered and the amount of work they put in to reach their level of success may serve as an inspiration.

Hiring motivational speakers is one way to engage your employees and help them reach their potential. Motivation is important to the success of your team or company, as it improves performance, encourages people to go the extra mile, learn more about themselves, explore new skills and find their place within the organization. Finding ways to motivate people whether intrinsically or extrinsically is the key to success.