The Art of Motivation


Why do people do the things they do? It is because their behavior is being influenced by a variety of factors that motivate them! For instance, hunger motivates a person to search for food.


The incentive must have a perceived value. When the individual is willing to expend effort to obtain the incentive, everyone wins.

Incentive Motivation

The concept of incentive motivation recognizes that the characteristics of the goals we work to obtain, influence our behavior.

Goals and engagement direct our behavior. After all, one of the most fundamental equations in all psychology is: Ability x Motivation = Performance

Cash vs Merchandise

Just give me the money... that's what I want.

The Beatles sang about our passion for cash decades ago. And in many ways, things haven't changed. Ask people what type of reward they want, and they'll say "cash."

But that's not the question, the question is "What gets the most engagement and performance?".

Research has demonstrated repeatedly, cash rewards don't emotionally engage and motivate extra effort.

Goodyear Study Results

Tangible Rewards Create Superior Results Over Cash

Tangible Rewards

Focuses performance - participants select the reward they want, and then focus on desired behavior to achieve.

Distinct from compensation - perceived as an "extra" and guilt free.

High trophy value - participants display and talk about the rewards they have earned.

Flexible - reward levels can be raised, lowered or terminated as business environment or needs change.

Highly promotable - visible symbols make it easy to capture and maintain participant engagement.


Focuses performance initially - participants can stall when they reach their lifestyle comfort level.

Easily confused with compensation - can be viewed as an entitlement.

No bragging rights - our culture discourages talking about income or net worth.

Lowered earning levels perceived as a change to standard of living - difficult to terminate.

Harder to promote - cash has different meanings to everyone and does not engage emotionally.

Further your Knowledge


    Coming Soon!

  • Non-Cash Rewards Vs. Cash Rewards
  • Are Incentives Programs Really Necessary?

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