Daniel Pink’s Latest Book on Motivation – ‘Drive’

Drive:  The SurDrive By Daniel Pinkprising Truth About What Motivates Us
By: Daniel H. Pink

Drive is Daniel Pink’s latest book about careers and management in the 21st century.  His other books include Free Agent Nation, A Whole New Mind, and The Adventures of Johnny Bunko.

The premise of Drive is that the dominate extrinsic reward management style of today’s businesses are based off a model that is far outdated for the 21st Century.  The book then goes onto describe in detail how a culmination of many years of research has shown that intrinsic rewards are just as important and often time more important than the extrinsic rewards that our current system relies so heavily on.

Why Carrots and Sticks Won’t Work in the 21st Century
In the first section of the book Pink provides a brief history of motivation theory using a computer’s operating system as an analogy. In the beginning, Motivation 1.0 provided us with the means for survival by providing us with instincts to obtain things like food and water.

As the human race progressed, Motivation 2.0 began to slowly take over.   Motivation 2.0 started to introduce new incentives and disincentives to allow management to control people’s motivation.  Things like higher pay and other material rewards -what Pink calls Carrots and Sticks – were utilized heavy to motivate us to perform.

Over time, Motivation 2.0 started to show its limitations as we have moved from a labor economy to a knowledge economy.

The book goes on to list the 7 deadly flaws of Motivation 2.0 which include the removal of instrinsic motivation, diminishing performance, crushed creativity and good behavior, encouragement of unethical behavior, and an increase in addiction and short-term thinking.

There is also a sub-chapter that is included that describes the narrow situation where Carrot and Sticks do still work – mainly in labor type jobs where a clear reason is given, an acknowledgment of the task’s tediousness is given, and  the management is focused on results and not processes.

He finishes the first section by developing new definitions for the Motivation 2.0 and 3.0 workers -Type X (Extrinsic) and Type I (Intrinsic).

A New Model: Motivation 3.0 Focuses on Intrinsic Rewards
After detailing the clear flaws and limitations of the Motivation 2.0 operating system, Pink introduces the new research behind what he dubs Motivation 3.0 – a newer and better model geared for today’s knowledge workers.

Motivation 3.0 says that once the external rewards (such as base pay) are provided equitably, a deeper and much stronger set of motivations drive workers.

The pillars of Motivation 3.0 include Autonomy – the ability to conduct work independently, Mastery – the ability to continually improve in our work and be engaged with it, and Purpose – the quest for a higher meaning.

Putting the Type I Mentality Into Practice
The book ends with a number of short chapters on how to implement Type I traits.   The ‘Type I Toolkit’ includes chapters on how to implement Type I behavior in a variety of settings including at home, within organizations and businesses, for personal exercise, and for parents and educators.

The book also provides a reading list for those interested in learning more about intrinsic motivation as well as a recap and a glossary of terms.

In Summary
I really have enjoyed all of Pink’s books.  This book is no exception.   It is a quick read and Pink does an excellent job presenting the background on the four decades of research the book is based off of and  couples it nicely with applications in today’s business world.  There is also some good, practical advice that is useful for anyone interested in implementing some of the ideas in the book into their own lives.

Other Links
Daniel Pink Blog
Animated ‘Drive’ Summary on YouTube
Free Agent Nation Review
Recently Read Career Books

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One Response to Daniel Pink’s Latest Book on Motivation – ‘Drive’

  1. Interesting. I’ll have to check it out – I can definitely see those changes happening.

    Another book on my ever-increasing reading list!

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