Every company is constantly seeking to encourage their employees to want to come to work and do their very best. This stems from the ability to give employees a sense of purpose and help them understand how their work contributes to the bigger picture of life. However, this point of view has not always been so widely believed. A shift has been made from the older habits of how to drive motivation, such as the carrot and stick method, to this new deeper purpose that many are searching for. Daniel Pink’s book, Drive: The Surprising Truth Behind What Motivates Us, is all about bridging the gap between this shift in motivation. Our Director of Learning and Development, Derek Shebby, recommends this book as the change your company needs in order to align behind a unified purpose.

The Book

In “Drive”, Pink explains that the commonly used “stick and carrot” motivation tactic is out of date. He dubs this style as Motivation 2.0 and states it will no longer produce the results that most companies are looking for. Companies are seeking ways to create long term sustainable motivation from their people. Pink says we can only do this by awakening intrinsic motivation within people, both at work and in a personal setting, which can be difficult. Pink discusses the three motivators that leaders must use to bring about Motivation 3.0 in people. Motivation 3.0 is made up of three virtues:

  • Autonomy
  • Mastery
  • Purpose

People need freedom within their job to make decisions. We must train our people to understand they have the authority to make judgment calls based on their knowledge because we believe in them. A great way to think about this is letting employees do their job to the best of their ability without micromanaging them. The purpose behind using autonomy is that when we trust our employees we also empower them.


Organizations must give their people the tools they need to be able to improve at their work. When we provide training, peer-reviews, book recommendations, and more, we are providing our people with opportunities to expand and develop their skillset. By doing this we are aiding them towards becoming a “master at their craft”, as Pink says. We are also showing them their worth to us. When companies put in the effort to help their people it shows the employees that the company sees them as worthy of resources.


This third virtue can be the hardest to convey, but also the most important. Your organization must share with employees how their specific tasks and job matter not only to the whole company but to the world. A great way to accomplish this is through community outreach. Employees should know that doing their job to the best of their ability helps the company give back to the community. This contribution will allow deeper ties to their work.

For more information about Pink’s book, please click on the link RSA Animate Video

The Results

By placing focus on the three virtues discussed above, your company culture will take on a whole new meaning. When you ask employees about the company they work for, do they describe it as “they” or as “we”? Implementing these virtues into your companies’ culture will help your employees develop a “we” mentality and help your company to continue moving forward.