Booknotes: Drive

Aug 3, 2021·

2 min read

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us**

By Daniel H. Pink

The modern economy needs an upgrade in motivating people and allowing people to creatively flourish - intrinsic motivation

Societies have operating systems, and our system holds a set of assumptions about human behavior.

Motivation 1.0 is the biological/survival needs that drive humans.

Motivation 2.0 is the rewards and punishment system that drive humans. This was important in economic development especially the Industrial Revolution/ Most companies still believe in this to improve performance.

But this is incompatible to how we organize, think, and do.

The traditional "carrots and sticks" system doesn't always work. For routine tasks, they can work but for non routine, creative tasks, they can be harmful.

The Seven Flaws:

  1. They can extinguish intrinsic motivation.
  2. They can diminish performance.
  3. They can crush creativity.
  4. They can crowd out good behavior.
  5. They can encourage cheating, shortcuts, and unethical behavior.
  6. They can become addictive.
  7. They can foster short-term thinking.

  8. “When money is used as an external reward for some activity, the subjects lose intrinsic interest for the activity.”—Edward Deci

Type X behavior - influenced by external rewards rather than internal rewards

Type I behavior - Influenced by intrinsic motivations

In order to fix the problems of organizations and the world, we need to be Type I.

The new approach to motivation has three essential elements: (1) Autonomy—the desire to direct our own lives; (2) Mastery—the urge to get better and better at something that matters; and (3) Purpose—the yearning to do what we do in the service of something larger than ourselves.


  • self-direction, freedom of choice
  • "We are born to be players, not pawns"
  • This era doesn’t call for better management. It calls for a renaissance of self-direction.
  • \1. what people do (TASK) \2. when they do it (TIME) \3. how they do it (TECHNIQUE) \4. whom they do it with (TEAM)


  • The goal of Motivation 2.0 was to get people to ply. In the 21st center, that strategy doesn't work.Motivation 3.0 seeks engagement. only engagement can produce mastery.

  • The 3 laws of mastery:

    Mastery is a mindset - growth mindset

    Mastery is a pain - requires grit/effort over a long time

    Mastery Is an Asymptote - impossible to achieve fully but comes close


  • To work for a goal that is larger than yourself
  • Many entrepreneurs are realizing that the best performing companies stand for something and contribute to the world.
  • Motivation 2.0 focused on profit maximization - motivated by "profit motive"
  • Motivation 3.0 places equal emphasis on purpose maximization - motivated by "purpose motive"