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September 20, 2004



Sorry Curt, I normally enjoy and agree with most of your blogs, but what in the world is wrong with money being the #1 motivator of why we work?

Maybe people not being motivated by money is why most employees live from paycheck to paycheck and a large percentage of owners live the way the want...

How noble it is to say we aen't motivated by money, and then tell our children we can't take them to Disney world because we can't afford it.

Curt Rosengren

Interesting reaction Tim. A couple thoughts in response:

1) Being motivated by money isn't inherently wrong. In a world where we need it, it's foolish to try to say it isn't part of the picture. Can it be a part of the equation? Of course! Should it be the primary focus? No.

I have known far too many people who have had money as their primary motivation (and who have made money hand over fist) who have been completely miserable because of their focus on money led them down paths that were out of alignment with who they really are.

Money as your prime focus is a slippery slope.

2) It sounds like you're a business person. With that in mind, look at it as a simple question of, "What is the most effective long-term motivational tool I have available to me?" I will always bet on people who want to do something because they're on fire about it over people who are acting in pursuit of an external reward.

3) Intrinsic motivation by its very definition feeds itself. Extrinsic motivation has to be continually stoked. Once that bonus is awarded, there has to be something else to take its place, or the motivation source is gone.

4) Re, "I can't take you to Disney world." It's not a black and white "either I'm motivated primarily by money or I work in a job where I can scarcely make ends meet."

5) Continuing with the Disney world example, the gift to a child of having parents who are on fire about life is exponentially more valuable than being able to take them to Disney world.

I'm not saying that making lots of money and being on fire about what you do are mutually exclusive. I've known plenty of people who make lots of money and positively vibrate with excitement about what they do. But in cases like those, it's not the money that lights them up. It's something else about what they do - the game of making that money, for example.

Thanks for the thought provoking comment Tim!

Romel Pacson

Hi guys

Many thanks for the blog and comment from Tim. This is useful for my Service Management exam tomorrow.

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