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08/03/2010

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Good points on letting people have more control over their career paths. The more free reign the employees have, the more they are likely to be engaged and be that much more productive.

Thank you for your comment, Drew. I couldn't agree more!

Great post, Laura. I don't recommend tie pins, either... but it's funny how many people (mostly in HR) are wedded to them. "But we've ALWAYS given tie/lapel pins. It's a critical part of our program!"

But ask just about any employee who ever received one, and they'll fumble to remember which junk drawer it ended up in.

And that circles back to the crux of your post -- any discussion of total rewards is irrelevant if you don't also discuss the meaningfulness of those rewards. "The way we've always done it" may mean something to the 30-year employee in Marketing, but absolutely nothing to the 1-year GenY rockstar in R&D. And vice versa. BOTH perspectives are equally important, and even that is vastly simplifying -- it's not easy to juggle the "perceived motivators" of a 10 person small business, much less in a 30,000 employee MNC.

And that's why the discussion must come down to (and thanks to Dan Pink and others is beginning to) true motivators of autonomy, mastery and purpose as you discuss, Laura. Every employee is motivated by managers who remove obstacles from their paths at work, who listen to them and help them achieve what is meaningful for them in the workplace.

Apologies for the long response, but believe your post is critical for people to understand. Well done.

Thank you for adding your insights, Derek. Your observation that a GenY R&D rockstar has little or no use for a tie pin says it all. I also like how you put: 'Every employee is motivated by managers who remove obstacles from their paths at work, who listen to them and help them achieve what is meaningful for them in the workplace.' What if these three simple criteria were added to or even replaced the manager evaluation form at every company?

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