March 08, 2010

What motivates you (besides sandwiches)?

A few weeks ago I visited the nearby Googleplex to hear a talk from Daniel Pink, author of Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us. His talk is well worth a listen, maybe as background during lunch:

Oddly enough, I make a cameo around the 2:30 mark. I was already a touch nervous about whether it was entirely legit for me to attend, despite being invited by friend & Google employee Marc Pawliger. I’d also heard Daniel on NPR talking about experiments in which subjects had to solve problems on the fly (e.g. how do you stick a box of candles to the wall?)–and of course Google is known for testing people.
Getting immediately called before the audience, therefore, was nerve wracking: Oh my God, these people are going to figure out I’m an impostor, I’m going to eat it on some stupid puzzle, and I’m going to make Adobe look bad by extension. Fortunately, however, the worst that awaited me was some Cheetos (at the expense of a free meal in the vaunted Google cafeteria).
As I say, the talk is worthwhile, and I’ll comment more soon on Autonomy, Mastery, and Progress, especially as I’ve faced my own struggles recently. [Thanks to Marc for hosting me, Google for posting the video, and of course Daniel for the sandwich.]

Posted by John Nack at 10:42 AM on March 08, 2010


  • Ken — 8:22 AM on March 08, 2010

    I sit here in my dinning room and watched the whole 51 minutes of D Pink. WOW, really nice of you to post this video.
    At my age of 63, it is like fresh water from a dirty well. I am inspired,yes some sadness. The culture I was raised was only carrot and stick….
    Thanks John,
    Ken in KY

  • Nick Hampson — 10:28 AM on March 08, 2010

    Nice stuff, can we make the term ‘John (Nack) Drive’ famous now? :-)

  • Bob Pinardi — 6:29 PM on March 16, 2010

    “Human beings respond to rewards in their enviroment.”
    “Money is a powerful Motivator, Carrots on a stick are a powerful motivator. Human beings respond to rewards an punishments in their environment.” You can tell this guy worked for the democrats and helped to write the tax codes that are use to control us all. Buy a house.. get the tax write off, Smoke, Drink YOU ARE must be punished with high taxes on those things. Have kids.. a tax write off, Carrot and the Stick. We need a flat tax.

  • M Pawliger — 8:46 AM on July 01, 2010

    New link for the talk:

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