Drive | GoodReads

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Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates UsDrive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

2.5 ⭐️'s rounded up to 3 — Interesting approach for a hard to nail down answer. Most relevant for employers trying to extract optimum performance from employees, parents raising children, or those with general curiosity.

We're born to be players, not pawns. We're meant to be autonomous individuals, not individual automatons.

Best predictor of success: Grit. (I actually liked Angela Duckworth's book, "Grit," a little more than this one.)

Second Law of Mastery: Mastery Is A Pain

A lot of this stuff is pretty basic, and seems to be more of a sweeping overview than anything applicable or too in-depth.

As wonderful as flow is, the path to mastery, becoming ever better at something you care about, is not lined with daisies and spanned by a rainbow. If it were, more of us would make the trip.

“Being a professional is doing the things you love to do, on the days you don’t feel like doing them.”
— Julius Erving

This book is a good summation of a lot of science and theories put forth by others, including a lengthy book review section at the end. If you're looking for something original or groundbreaking, look elsewhere.

*However,* it is important to note that rewards don't work as a motivating factor. People are more motivated by internal drives, as opposed to external forces.
If you want the best work out of people, let them have freedom and flow, don't micromanage, and don't use money as an incentive for creative output.


Save yourself the time, and check out Pink's TED Talk.

Things to Ponder

Even when we do get what we want, it's not always what we need.

The mastery asymptote is a source of frustration. Why reach for something you can never fully attain? But it's also a source of allure. Why not reach for it? The joy is in the pursuit more than the realization. In the end, mastery attracts precisely because mastery eludes.

- This quote reminded me of the more achievable moon speech by JFK:

"But why, some say, the Moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask, why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

We choose to go to the moon. We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too."


Our business has evolved into a ROWE, and it's much more efficient.

Results Only Work Environment (ROWE): The brainchild of two American consultants, a row is a workplace in which employees don't have schedules. They don't have to be in the office at a certain time, or any time, they just have to get their work done.

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