Extrinsic vs. intrinsic motivation: what’s the difference?

Source: http://www.ntd.tv/2017/02/08/extrinsic-vs-intrinsic-motivation-whats-difference/

Motivation – a supposedly easy concept. Everyone knows what motivation is. It gives us reasons for our actions, desires and needs. But what complexity lies behind this! We still don’t quite understand why people are motivated to do something.

Many theories have been created in order to explicate the mysterious nature of human motivation. One well known theory is the famous Maslow hierarchy of needs — it’s argued that humans have needs that are hierarchically ranked. First there are physiological needs, then safety, social needs, esteem and finally self-actualization. But there are many more theories about human motivation.

In our increasingly money oriented world, motivation has become an important phenomenon that companies want to understand and use to their benefit. Companies and corporations want their employees to work a lot and to do it effectively and are financing many studies on this subject. But I think that the answer to their problem has already been found. It’s called the “Cognitive Evaluation Theory” and it states that there are actually two motivational systems – intrinsic and extrinsic.


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