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Motivation Science

How Does Your Company Discuss Failure?

[New post: "How Does Your Company Discuss Failure?"  from Paul Hebert - Vice President Solution Design. You can read more about him and where he'll be this year on our Leadership page.] A twitter exchange the other day with @IncBlot (Dr. Daniel Crosby) had me clicking some links on different psychological terms and I landed […]

Money Quotes: “How Will You Measure Your Life?”

[New post from Paul Hebert - Vice President Solution Design. You can read more about him and where he'll be this year on our Leadership page.] This book is an extension of  a commencement speech that Clayton Christensen gave to the Harvard Business School 2010 spring graduating class. The result  is either a self-help book […]

Giving Begats Getting – Influence Techniques in Reward Programs

Over 6 years ago, when I started my consulting company (I2I) and before I was adopted by the great people here at Symbolist I made the conscious decision to focus on how to influence behavior.  I’d spent 100+ years in the incentive industry (or so it felt) where we had beaten the “do x get […]

Motivation & Recognition Silver Bullets Don’t Exist

We all do it. We read the latest research on what motivates people.  We pour over the latest case study on intrinsic versus extrinsic rewards.  We agonize over whether we should include a cash incentive or if we should only use praise as a reward. We are all looking for that 100% guaranteed solution that […]

Do Monetary Rewards Create Psychopaths?

One of the clues that someone is a psychopath is that they lack empathy for others.  Psychopathy in an individual can present itself as a callousness and lack of remorse and guilt.  In other words psychopaths really don’t give a rip about you.  And for being successful in business today that may not be a […]

Time to Embrace “Little Data”

Big Data. Wish I had a nickel for each time I’ve heard that phrase lately.  I’d have a bunch of nickels. For those of you in Rio Linda – from Wikipedia, big data is: … a collection of data sets so large and complex that it becomes difficult to process using on-hand database management tools or traditional […]

Increase Health Care Screening Participation AND Decrease Incentive Costs

Wellness is a big issue in today’s workforce.  Companies can save a lot of money by managing their risks associated with health insurance.  We’ve seen the posts on wellness incentives and the return they provide– a dollar spent on wellness = $3 in savings. Properly designed incentives CAN impact your insurance costs.  And because of these […]

The Old – Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Motivation Argument AGAIN!

It never fails. If you talk about incentives you’re sure to get a few (a lot lately) of people who have read a book or saw a study that says extrinsic motivation sucks and the only way to really motivate someone is with “intrinsic motivation” (always said with a lyric quality as if spoken by […]

Tale of Two Posts – Cash as a Motivator?

Dueling posts on the interwebs today – one from always engaging The Cynical Girl @lruettimann and the other on TNLT from @derekirvine. Only one really hits the nail on the head. First – to recap Derek’s post: Cash is a poor motivator because it looks like coercion and reduces an employee’s “intrinsic” motivation, it becomes […]

Influencing Behaviors WITHOUT Rewards

While the title of this blog was (and still is…) Incentive Intelligence – one of our core tenants is to look at all the ways we can ethically influence behaviors outside simple incentives.  We’re not here to just sell an incentive and reward program.  Don’t get me wrong.  There are a ton of places and […]