Learn the key ideas of the book by Daniel H. Pink


How to activate people’s motivation

Humans are born active and curious, in other words: ready for a challenge. Managers need to bear this in mind to help their employees, and themselves, do their very best. Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us aims to teach us the cornerstones of motivation 3.0, which guides us as we discover the most effective triggers we can use to motivate people whilst still keeping an eye on the company’s profit.

Read in 11 min.
Listen in 14 min.

Many useful tips to:

  • Learn what buttons to press to motivate people.
  • Help distinguish between internal and external motivation.
  • Discover the techniques used to create engagement and mastery.

The author of the book:

Daniel H. Pink is an American author who has written six books on the world of business and psychology, which have been translated into 39 languages and sold over three million copies. He often appears on the radio and television and he was a host and co-executive producer of a television series for National Geographic Channel. Pink has worked in journalism both as a columnist and as an editor, as well as working in politics. In 2019, Thinkers 50 nominated him the sixth most influential thinker in the world on the science of motivation.


Motivation changes according to changes in human need

The main objective of the very first human beings was to survive, or rather to ensure the survival of the species. They were driven by their animal instincts: to eat, to sleep, and to procreate at all costs. When our ancestors began to gather in tribes, then in villages, this aggressive, individualistic way of living no longer worked. You don’t steal food or women from your friends.

So that the community could develop, each individual had to play their part: their new incentives became obtaining rewards and avoiding punishment, according to a model that is known today as “the carrot-and-stick”.

As man evolved, so did the factors that motivated him, sometimes to an almost imperceptible degree. Since the last century, the complication of our financial structure has brought with it the demand for services that are increasingly difficult to perform, and, consequently, the factors that motivate people have changed dramatically. Professors and researchers such as Abraham Maslow, Douglas McGregor and Frederick Herzberg, all tried to guess the most effective way to encourage new generations to improve. Companies followed their studies and began to apply them to working practices: more recognition, increased autonomy and opportunities for growth became the new criteria for the management of human resources in a business. This is what we might call a 2.1 motivational model.

However, every paradigm has an expiration date and the time has come to renew our much loved 2.1.


The key ideas of "Drive"

Motivation changes according to changes in human need
The inner stimulus has changed: people no longer work simply on a basis of costs and benefits
Rewards help, but they can also harm, because of the “hidden cost”
There are two types of personalities, and they each respond to different types of encouragement
Engagement, flow and mastery: experiences that guarantee us quality of life
Motivating ourselves: there are exercises that can put us on the right path
Take-home message

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