The Knowledge Hub
Understanding Extrinsic Motivation: How External Factors Drive Our Actions
What is Extrinsic Motivation?
Key Extrinsic Motivators:
Rewards and Punishments
Rewards (like bonuses or awards) and punishments (such as disciplinary actions or fines) in a workplace or educational setting are classic extrinsic motivators.
Praise from others, social acknowledgment, or fame can also serve as powerful extrinsic motivators. An athlete competing for a medal or a student striving for top grades to gain recognition from peers and teachers are examples.
Sometimes, the expectations or demands of others, such as parents or supervisors, can motivate individuals to engage in certain behaviors.
The Impact of Extrinsic Motivation:
Connection to your Basic Human Needs:
Self-Determination Theory, developed by Prof. Deci and Prof. Ryan, helps us unravel this puzzle! It posits that humans have innate psychological needs for autonomy, competence, and relatedness. When these needs are satisfied, we are more likely to experience intrinsic motivation, a powerful force driving us to engage in activities because we find them inherently rewarding.
🔍 Let's Connect the Dots:
1️⃣ Autonomy: When we engage in activities willingly and autonomously, our intrinsic motivation flourishes. If we suddenly add extrinsic rewards, like bonuses or recognition, we may start doing it primarily for those rewards rather than personal satisfaction.
2️⃣ Competence: Feeling competent and capable in an activity boosts our intrinsic motivation. Introducing external rewards can inadvertently undermine our sense of competence, as we may start doubting our skills without those rewards.
3️⃣ Relatedness: The social aspect plays a significant role in motivation. If we initially participated in an activity to connect with others or foster relationships, overjustification through external rewards can disrupt the genuine social connection we once enjoyed.