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Mr. Clayton Christensen, a renowned author in the field of management, wrote an article entitled “INCENTIVES ARE NOT THE SAME AS MOTIVATORS”. He enlightens his readers on the difference between incentives and motivators. He was born on April 16, 1952 at Salt Lake City, Utah (USA). Besides being a teacher and a consultant, he is also famous in writing articles about innovator’s dilemma. This article was published by Carmen Nobel last June 4, 2012.

Some people may say that “incentives” and “motivators” are synonymous to each other, but they are different in a major way. Incentives are somewhat like “prizes” set for the persons who did something beneficial. Meaning, people will do their best to get the prize. Whereas for motivators, it is somewhat like “encouragements” to persuade people to do their best to enhance their own skills. It is more lasting and holistic. “Do this and you’ll get that,” These are the words that we always hear from our parents.

This is also a very common and popular phrase in companies. Some corporations rely on some sort of incentive programs, wherein there will always be “fabulous prizes” if the company’s productivity improves. Henry L. Gantt, contributor to Scientific Management, had designed a program wherein every worker who finished a day’s assigned work load would win a 50? bonus for that day. Because of this, of course, we can conclude that all workers labored to win the prize.

But behind all these incentives, do all workers really have passion for their work? In my personal experience, when I was young, I also did the household chores because of incentives – washing dishes for new toys, clothes, and other things; cleaning the house for cell phone load; and many more. But after some time, I realized that without any incentives, I am not motivated to perform those tasks. Motivations came when I realized that upon completion of the assigned tasks, I can enjoy and benefit from it.

I can feel and enjoy the fruits of my labor. In conclusion, I agree with the author that motivations are better than incentives. If you would look at it carefully, if the incentive program will to be used, people will only do their job because of that “something” that will be given afterwards. However, if the motivation program will to be introduced instead, it would inspire people to do their best at all times, in order for them to be proud, and contented with what they have done, and with what they have achieved.



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