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I hadn’t really thought about in regards to change. Employees being pushed into change by reward or punishment. I suppose a change involving punishment would be one that no one is really on board for, yet leadership implemented anyway without regard to how the employees would react to it. Kind of a do it because I said so approach. A key barrier in most change efforts is the motivation to actually change; all too often it is simply missing. Personnally, I prefer being pushed into change with a reward like most people do I’m sure, but this made me think; what are some ways that you might implement change via reward? Of course, the most obvious thought that comes to mind might be money, but after looking up the topic I found an article I thought was pretty interesting. The following is just some key points I took away, but feel free to check out the reference link if you like (Worley, 2016):

  1. The most widely accepted explanation for why people are motivated to work, perform, learn and change is rooted in what psychologists call expectancy theory. Expectancy theory argues that people are mostly rational decision makers who think about their actions and act in ways that satisfy their needs and help them reach their goals. The theory assumes, and research evidence confirms, that people generally try to deal rationally with the world as they see it. It views people as proactive, future-oriented and motivated to behave in ways that they believe will lead to valued rewards. It does not suggest that people will always resist change. Quite to the contrary, it suggests that they will seek it if it leads to their receiving valued rewards.
  2. Since organizations get the behaviours they reward, organizations that wish to perform well and change effectively need to create systems that reward both performance and change. This sounds simple, but it is not easy to do. It is also not what most organizations do. All too often, they reward stability more than change, seniority more than performance and job size more than skill development.
  3. Organizations need reward systems that motivate performance, reward change, and encourage the development of individual and organizational capabilities and competencies. Paying the person instead of the job and using variable pay and stock are perhaps the most powerful changes an organization can make in moving its reward system toward one that supports performance and change.



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