I would like to share a video that from my point of view should be a classic about what motivates us.
It’s an adaptation of Dan Pink’s talk at the RSA.
It is related to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, focusing on the top of the pyramid where the classical reward system is not as effective as it would seem.
I think one of the biggest truths it speaks is that contrary to popular beliefs, rewards can be a double edge sword. They can sky rocket productivity in repeatable tasks but can also decrease creativity and productivity in mind challenging tasks.
Of course, this does not mean that people should not reward intellectuals, but that different kinds of needs require different kinds of incentives: there is no “one-size-fits-all” solution.