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Thank you for inspiring me to document musings and learnings from the field of leadership, team performance and conscious change. I trust you'll find the exercises, resources and insights useful whether you are a leader, team player, coach/consultant or change agent.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Carrots, Sticks and Peas


A recent Harvard Business Review article illuminated three ways to motivate change. http://blogs.hbr.org/bregman/2009/06/the-best-way-to-change-a-corpo.html 

The experiment was to get kids to eat peas. They tried reward (if you eat your peas you can have ice cream). They tried punishment (if you don’t eat your peas you can’t use your iPad). What worked best was vision, community and camaraderie (all the kids are eating peas, join the fun!)

The carrot and stick approach (while still popular) may work temporarily but it depends on fear, control, force, guilt, lack and an external authority to work. It ultimately thwarts optimal performance and isn't sustainable!

Inspiring change and igniting human potential is more like an invitation than a command. It is about enabling conscious choice and bringing out the best in each other. Vision motivates. Accountability empowers. Camaraderie laughs. Alignment calms. Purpose energizes. Trust cultivates. Conflict illuminates.

What carrots or sticks are no longer working on your team? Where can you apply the peas solution? 

Thanks Lyndee for the resource!