The Science of Motivation

Here's an excellent speech made by Dan Pink in TED regarding motivation. Motivation is a key aspect of our lives that keeps us going and egging us on to achieve greater heights. Dan talks about the shift that's happening in the motivation approach in corporate world from the carrot and stick approach of the industrial age to intrinsic motivation of the knowledge age. Intrinsic motivation taps on our inner desire to do things because - they matter to us, we like it, they are interesting and its part of something more important. The key building blocks of intrinsic motivation are:

Autonomy - Urge to direct our own lives
Mastery - The desire to get better and better at something that matters
Purpose - The yearning to do what we do in the service of something larger than ourselves

I tend to fully agree with him based on my experience. While compensation is an important part and an employee needs to be adequately compensated to retain him, intrinsic motivation is a key aspect to keep them motivated and to enable them to perform effectively. In the corporate world this is achieved by setting clear goals, empowering and enabling individuals to perform at their best.

Pace of Life!!

I came across this excellent article in WSJ - Not so fast regarding the pace of life. This article is bang on target and really got me thinking. So here I am with this blog to air my views!

Technology has made phenomenal strides in the last century with the advent of phones, television, computers and finally the internet. These inventions have been very beneficial in connecting us, bringing us closer by shrinking distances & breaking down geographical barriers. Never in the human history have we been more connected, updated on global events and in touch amongst ourselves than in the last few decades. However one of the key unintended consequence of these inventions is, they have been shrinking time and increasing the pace of our lives. I am sure most of us would be feeling this in our day to day life. Each passing day and each new technology/gadget competes for a slice of our time. It invariably eats into our personal time earmarked for us, our family and friends.

One of the key shifts that occurred along the way is that the definition of Speed has changed from sense of urgency to efficiency/speed of doing things. This puts a lot of stress on individuals. We are constantly racing the clock with too many things to be completed (both personal and official) in too short a time. Add in the peer pressure, competition and distractions it takes stress to stratospheric levels and we are always out of time. We hardly get time to take a breather, relax and enjoy the simple things in life. By the time we look back and realize this, our life would have passed by on the fast track and you end up wondering what you did with your life. Infact the last decade of my life seems to have vanished before I knew!!

Most of the technologies today are very addictive. We cannot imagine a life without our cell phones, TV's and computers/internet. The addiction has reached levels where you become nervous/restless when you don't have these gadgets around. We are unsure of what to do or how to pass time. If you look back in the not too distant past(10-15yrs) most of us didn't have phones, computers, internet etc. We had a much more balanced and happier life, spending time with our family and friends and doing things that mattered most to us. While tech allows us to be more connected we seem to be losing the personal touch.

One of the biggest things that worries me is that our pace of life is increasing each day/year. Continuous improvement seems to be the order of the day - We are constantly required to do things faster, in lesser time, more efficiently. We seem to be caught in this vicious cycle and are constantly pressed for time and stressed out. Is this pace of life sustainable? Is it possible to stall or reduce the pace of life? What can we do to claim our life back and slow down the pace? Will it ever be possible to be fully cut off from this reality - No Phones, TV, Internet, newspapers etc and not having to worry about doing this or that on-time(Not retirement ofcourse!)?

I seem to have more questions than answers. I would like to hear your thoughts/experience and any answers you might have for some of the questions I have raised above. Thank you for taking time to read thru this and look forward to your comments.

Gartner Hype Cycle 2009

Analyst Firm Gartner has released its latest Hype cycle (2009) detailing out some of the latest technology trends for 2009 and beyond. Pls check out the same.

Source of the above images: Gartner, RWW

You could click on the images to get a better resolution version. When i upload these images it gets a little blurry in blogger.

For more details pls refer the following links:

Gartner Hype Cycle 2009: Web 2.0 Trending Up, Twitter Down

Gartner's 2009 Hype Cycle Special Report Evaluates Maturity of 1,650 Technologies

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