The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

I recently came across this very interesting video about research into motivation particularly related to the workplace, which concludes that money is not the main motivator for good performance.

Now I know that many of you will say that you knew that already. But money is still often used as the main motivator to get people to perform better.

In fact, it was foundĀ  that when tasks required cognitive skills, a larger reward led to poorer performance.

Apparently, the best use of money as a motivator is to pay people enough to take the issue of money off the table.

Once that’s taken care of, there are 3 main factors which lead to better performance and personal satisfaction:

Autonomy – the desire to be self-directed

Mastery – the urge to get better at stuff

Purpose – doing something that that makes you feel you’re helping someone, making a contribution or giving back to the community or the world.

In the current economic climate, there are many people who have been made redundant and/or can’t get jobs so they are turning to self-employment/starting their own business as a means of creating an income.what motivates

So whilst money might be originally what motivates people to ‘go it alone’, I feel that the 3 factors listed above soon become much more important.

If you are just starting out on your journey in your own business, you will need:

Coaching and mentoring to ensure your autonomy is heading in the right direction

Training to help you quickly master the new skills you may need

Passion for what you are doing. All businesses help others in some way, but if you are passionate about what you do, you will find this so much easier.

So back to my original question.

What motivates you?

Is it the above or do you find other factors motivate you?

Please do share in the comments below.

To your success

what motivates




Be Sociable, Share!


  • Hi Valerie,

    What motivates me is a combination of things – A better quality of life for my family – spouse despises his job, so a desire to replace his income, so we can work together at home. Creating my own future – although I’m a stay at home mom, I still want fulfillment and challenge, I still enjoy working, so I want to work on something that will reward me many times over.

    I guess it does boil down to money, but as you said, it’s also so much more than than.

    Christine Brady recently posted..9 Things You Need to Learn to Grow Your Online Business NowMy Profile

    • valerie says:

      Hi Christine

      It’s definitely more than money!

      What motivates me most is doing something I enjoy, learning new things, meeting great people and being able to help people with their problems.

      Thanks for visiting :)

  • farouk

    great insights
    i was just collecting information about motivation and luckily i cam across your post
    very well organized thoughts ,thank you

  • farouk says:

    great insights
    i was just collecting information about motivation and luckily i cam across your post
    very well organized thoughts ,thank you :)

Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge

Wordpress SEO Plugin by SEOPressor