Understanding employee motivation with the Self-Determination Theory

Any decent author knows that in order to be able to create believable and engaging characters, the question of what drives and motivates them has to have a good answer. Upbringing, values, cultural background — all need to be taken into account. Yet while with fiction it’s not that hard to do-over chapters, re-write dialogue or even make important changes at the editor’s request, real life rarely allows for major fixes.

The subject of what motivates individuals and more importantly, what motivates groups of people to act in a unitary and predictable way, is one that scholars have looked into for quite some time. There are several theories of motivation. Probably the most notorious one is Maslow’s pyramid. While that stands true even today since in our reality basic needs are rarely if ever subject to lack of fulfillment, a more refined approach is deemed necessary.

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