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The GREAT Model

What you will get: The GREAT model of Motivation.


What if everything you thought you knew about motivation was wrong?


You see…


There is a clear difference between what most organisations do to try and motivate their staff and what psychology shows us actually motivates people!


The classic approach has always been stick and carrot!


So you motivate the donkey by either beating it with a stick to work harder. Or you try to bribe it to work harder by giving it carrots (or large, costly pay rises!)


Problem is…


People are not donkeys!


So the carrot and stick approach does not work.


Well actually, that’s not entirely true.


So for simple tasks that require no thought, autonomy or creativity, this approach does work.


So let’s say…


I am the manager of a building site. And I want a pile of rubbish cleared. If I offer my worker €50 if he clears it in 2 hours and €100 if he clears it in 90 minutes, this will motivate the worker to work harder and faster.


So what about the kind of task that requires problem solving, creative thought and some kind of understanding?


Well here’s the surprising news. Many psychological studies show that…


Offering more money reduces performance levels!


That’s right!


So the more carrots you offer, the worse the motivation levels!


Now, isn’t that interesting!


Think of the €Millions that companies invest in bonus schemes each year in an attempt to keep staff motivated.


And what’s even worse…


Once you start a bonus scheme mentality, people soon come to expect it. So they get disappointed when you offer them more money each year if it is not what they have grown to expect.


So now to the million dollar question…


How can you motivate people without using the carrot and stick approach?


For the answer, we need to forget about donkeys and talk about elephants. You see, the elephant (the subconscious or limbic brain) inside everyone’s head needs to be fed 5 key ingredients to feel motivated.


And to make these 5 key ingredients easy to remember, I have put them into a simple model that I call the GREAT Model.


So the following 5 steps, taken from my Limbic Performance System Professional Development Programme, clarify how to make motivation GREAT.


  • Step 1: Growth
  • Elephants like growth. So make sure you give people opportunities to grow and learn.


  • Step 2: Responsibility
  • There is nothing more demotivating than being told what to do and how to do it all the time. One of the top 5 motivators for humans is to have a sense of responsibility and the freedom to make choices.


  • Step 3: Excellence
  • We humans are motivated by the opportunity to become Masters of things. If doesn’t matter whether it’s an expert tennis player, an exceptional manager or a fabulous cook. Mastery motivates!


  • Step 4: Achievement
  • Linked to step 3, humans like to achieve. This doesn’t mean everyone needs to achieve big things – but the chance to achieve at any level is fundamental food for our elephants.


  • Step 5: Thanks
  • We all need recognition. Recognition for what we have done. And even more importantly, recognition for who we are. (“You are a caring mother,” for example). So make sure you take time to thank people.


Simple, clear food for the elephant!


And what’s more…


It’s absolutely free!


None of the GREAT steps cost a Cent!


So is it time to say goodbye to the carrot and stick?


And open your arms to something GREAT.


I’m off to give some elephants what they really want.


How about you?


To your success







Steve Neale
“Europe’s Leading Expert on Personal and Professional Growth”


Psychologist, Executive Coach, EI Practitioner, Award Winning Trainer, International Author, Psychodynamic Therapist, Hypnotherapist, Mindfulness Instructor, International Speaker, Creator of the LPS, Creator of the Accredited Masters in High-Performance Leadership

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