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Saturday, November 6, 2010

Influencer: Post #4

Structural (systemic) Motivation and Ability

a. Structural Motivation: Let personal motivators and social reinforcement be the basis for organizational rewards. Make sure rewards are directly and immediately linked to behaviors. Rewards should be small and heartfelt, or they will backfire. In the case of rewards, “less is more.” What about when things go bad? If you have to come down on people, first give them a warning. Then do what must be done (punish them) to show that you won’t tolerate misbehavior.

b. Structural Ability: Change the environment. If you want people to collaborate and reinforce each other, then give them a place to gather and physically locate them close to each other. The concept of “propinquity” (proximity) is fascinating and discussed at length in the book. Psychologist Leon Festinger discovered a simple truth: “…the frequency and quality of human interaction is largely a function of physical distance.” Give people a gathering place and watch them interact, ask questions, and influence each other in ways you would never imagine.

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