I've been following the incentives thread for a bit now. I once ran
across an interesting article on motivation that I've not yet seen
One more time: How do you motivate employees?
F. Herzberg, Harvard Business Review, Sept-Oct 1987
The notion from the article relevant to the current discussion was:
"...the factors involved in producing job satisfaction (and motivation)
are separate and distinct from the factors that lead to job
dissatisfaction. Since separate factors need to be considered, depending
on whether job satisfaction or job dissatisfaction is being examined, it
follows that these two feelings are not opposite of each other. The
opposite of job satisfaction is not job dissatisfaction but, rather, _no_
job satisfaction; and similarly, the opposite of job dissatisfaction is
not job satisfaction, but _no_ job dissatisfaction."
Herzberg called the two sets of factors _motivators_ and _hygiene_.
Motivators included: achievement, recognition for achievement, the work
itself, responsibility, and growth or advancement. Hygiene factors
included: company policy and administration, supervision, interpersonal
relationships, working conditions, salary, status, and security.
I find the construct pretty intuitive. It also has some interesting
implications. For example, it makes it easy to understand how one could
simultaneously have a high level of job satisfaction and dissatisfaction
(you love the work but hate the supervision or salary or whatever.)
For what it's worth.
-- Chad Johnston, Vector Research, Inc. (313) 973-9210 / firstname.lastname@example.org