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Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns Critical Essay

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Updated: Jul 8th, 2019

Introduction: The Many Faces of Motivation

The issue of workforce motivation has never been easy; despite the fact that a company might offer its staff an otherwise perfect working environment, the absence of any kind of motivation is most likely to lead to drastic effects.

Over centuries, the concept of motivation has been changing, with new theories emerging on a regular basis. In his book, Pink consolidates the efforts of his predecessors and introduces his interpretation of what the mechanisms of motivation are, therefore, creating premises for a reinvention of the modern business world as people know it.

Theories of Motivation as Pink Sees Them

It is quite remarkable that the entire third chapter of Pink’s book is devoted to the issue of motivation as it was interpreted by various researchers. Pink offers a very unique observation of the existing motivational theories. It is interesting that he does not go over an entire list, nor does he choose the most conventional ones.

Instead, Pink offers the readers an opportunity to follow his train of thoughts and come to the realization of the Type I and Type X theory as the only possible option. Therefore, the author provides a unique choice of motivational theories overview, mixing them with his own idea of motivation in the workplace.

Self-determination theory

It is peculiar that the self-determination theory has so much in common with Pink’s own theory. Once pink introduces its main concepts, the reader is able to see that the self-determination theory is going to become one of the pillars that Pink’s Type X and Type I theory is going to be based on.

Beginning “with a notion of universal human needs” (Pink 70), the given theory appeals to people’s need for personal growth and the recognition of their work. Thus, it can be assumed that the Motivation 2.0 theory was partially spawned by the concept of self determination suggested by Deci and Ryan.

Theory X: McGregor

Another step in understanding the way in which the Motivation 2.0 theory was developed, the concept suggested by McGregor allows to take a closer look at the specifics of human mind. Stressing the fact that two basic people’s needs are their recognition as individuals and the necessity to blend in with the crowd, McGregor suggested a Theory X, which considers the need to integrate into society as the basis for workplace motivation.

Theory Y: McGregor

Another element of McGregor’s concept of motivation, the Theory Y allows to consider the phenomenon in question from a perspective of individual needs. As Pink explains, the trail of thoughts starting at Theory X and continuing with Theory Y leads to the Motivation 2.0.

Friedman’s theory

A researcher whom, paradoxically enough, hardly anyone has ever heard of, as Pink explains (Pink 72), Friedman suggested another brilliant interpretation of where employees’ motivation comes from and what it is supported by.

Contrary to the theory of self-determination, the given theory presupposes that people are mostly predisposed to behave in a particular way; in other words, people are born either as Type A, i.e., active and enthusiastic, or as a Type B, non-resourceful and procrastinating. However, Pink notes that Friedman offers a ray of hope by claiming that Type B can be converted into Type A, and vice versa.

Type I and type X: Pink’s concept

Pink’s brainchild, the given theory can be viewed as a combination of the concepts of motivation listed above, with an addition of such an important variable as stability into the structure of a perfect motivational strategy.

In Pink’s own words, the very essence of the theory of Type I and Type X can be put in the following way: “If you offer people steadily employment and carefully calibrated rewards, they’ll do what executives and shareholders want, and everyone will prosper” (Pink 67).

To be more exact, Pink makes it clear that the impeccable method of motivation lies between the Type X, or external, motivational factors, and Type I, or intrinsic, ones. By balancing between the two and offering the employees both financial and moral rewards, managers will most likely benefit.

In fact, Pink points out that his Motivation 2.0 theory, as he also calls it, has much in common with the self-determination theory in that it allows for improving the employees’ performance through their realization of self.

Book Summary and Analysis

As it has been stressed above, Pink provides a detailed overview of the most efficient and impressive motivation theories that have been suggested so far, giving credit to where it belongs and mentioning the motivation theories that, quite honestly, should be more popular in the present-day business world. However, apart from an overview of motivational theories, Pink also offers his own theory of Type I and Type X.

In addition, the book touches upon the autonomy based behavior and, stressing its significance, suggests the methods to encourage the given behavioral pattern in people. Finally, Pink comments on the necessity to introduce autonomy to employees and outlines the key features of an employee who is guided by the principles of an autonomic behavior.

A Job in Community Service and Motivation Issues

Although food industry is not traditionally associated with career development, my experience of a Head Hostess has shown me that motivational factors may vary to certain degree. To be more exact, I must admit that in my job, I used to be motivated by the appraisal of the managers and the recognition of my efforts with the financial issues for the first time.

The given phenomenon can be explained by the fact that I was assigned a number of responsibilities that demanded constant communication with clients and employees; as a result, I was very dependent on the way in which people perceive me and my attempts to provide a high-quality professional performance.

Therefore, at first, I was clearly guided by the principles of a self-determination theory. However, as time passed, the need to be recognized as a hard-working employee took a back seat, while obtaining a financial reward became the top priority.

Finally, as I set my priorities straight and started dealing with organizational issues, I resorted to using the Motivation 2.0 theory thus, combining the ideas of financial reward and job satisfaction as the key components of my motivation.

It is quite peculiar that, in my experience, when only starting building a career, one is most likely to be motivated primarily by the financial rewards and concerned with the need to fulfill one’s duties as fast and efficiently as possible. However, as soon as one starts feeling more comfortable with the job, the

Conclusion: There Is Yet Much to Explore

Even though Pink clearly makes an impressive effort by incorporating the information and ideas concerning motivation that have been discovered previously and distills his own nonetheless impressive idea of how employees are motivated in the business world, it is obvious that Pink’s theory needs further improvement.

Works Cited

Pink, Daniel P. Drive: The Surprising Truth about What Motivates Us. New York, NY: Penguin Group US. 2012. Print.

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IvyPanda. (2019, July 8). Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-in-the-xxi-century-new-solutions-to-the-old-concerns/

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"Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns." IvyPanda, 8 July 2019, ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-in-the-xxi-century-new-solutions-to-the-old-concerns/.

1. IvyPanda. "Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns." July 8, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-in-the-xxi-century-new-solutions-to-the-old-concerns/.


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IvyPanda. "Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns." July 8, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-in-the-xxi-century-new-solutions-to-the-old-concerns/.

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IvyPanda. 2019. "Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns." July 8, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/motivation-in-the-xxi-century-new-solutions-to-the-old-concerns/.

References

IvyPanda. (2019) 'Motivation in the XXI Century: New Solutions to the Old Concerns'. 8 July.

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