Established, since 1997, leading UK based training provider.

People Management Skills - Motivation Training

People Management Skills - Motivation Training

Motivation Training

Motivation is important to any team because, if the team lacks motivation, then it will not be as productive as it could be.
If productivity drops, then your chances of success are reduced. If the team is highly motivated, then the team becomes more productive, and your chances of success improve.
So it would pay you to understand human motivation.

What is motivation?

Motivation is an emotional state.
Motivation is an emotional state that is derived from thoughts about consequences.
Motivation is an emotional state that is derived from thoughts about consequences of doing, or failing to do, a certain task.

There are two major forms of motivation:

  1. Positive motivation
  2. Negative motivation

Positive motivation is based on thoughts about the positive benefits of achieving a goal or doing a certain task.
Negative motivation is based on thoughts about the negative, painful consequences that you will suffer if you don't to a certain task or if you fail to achieve a certain goal.
Both positive and negative motivation will work to inspire a person to act.

Examples of Positive Motivation

You will be motivated to do those things which you believe will (or could) make your life better.
For instance, you may be motivated to exercise: not because exercise is pleasurable but because it is beneficial to your health and physical appearance.
You are motivated to get on a plane to travel across the world, not because travelling on a plane is pleasurable, but because travelling on a plane is beneficial to your holiday plans.
You may be motivated to climb a mountain; not because mountain climbing is easy or even pleasurable but because of the positive meanings that "climb every mountain" has on your psyche.

Personal Development Training Personal Development Training Course Logo

Personal Development Training

In order to improve your performance, you may need to develop your personal and professional skills: meaning: skills of communication, planning, prioritisation, motivation and personal confidence. If you want to learn more, then click here for personal development training.

Examples of Negative Motivation

Negative motivation is motivation away from a painful consequence.
You are motivated to obtain a TV licence not because you relish the idea of owning a TV licence, or because you want to watch programming produced by the BBC; you buy a TV licence in order to avoid the painful consequences you will suffer if you don't have one.
You may be motivated to do your homework not because you relish the idea of writing the essay, but rather because you want to avoid the painful consequences that you will suffer if you don't write the essay.
You may be motivated to go on a calorie controlled diet, not because you relish the idea of eating more vegetables, but rather because you want to avoid the painful consequences you will suffer if you keep eating too many cakes.

You can be made to move (ie motivated) by the thought of painful consequences. The same motivational principles that apply to you, also apply to others

Therefore you can motivate other people by the same two types of motivation; either by positive or negative motivators.

What are the positive motivators?

There are seven primary positive motivators:

  1. Money
  2. Security
  3. Achievement
  4. Recognition
  5. Praise
  6. Team acceptance
  7. Personal pride


Most people are motivated by money because money can be translated into other values.


Most people can be motivated by the promise of greater security because most people like to think the future is settled and that everything in the future will turn out well.


Most people are positively motivated by the sense of achievement after they have succeeded at a difficult task.


Most people will be positively motivated by tokens of recognition: medals, decorations, certificates and awards.


Most people are motivated by verbal praise and appreciation of others: social motivators

Team acceptance

Team acceptance and loyalty to the group is a major motivator. The military use team loyalty to motivate each individual to give his best (her best) for the good of the team, or the unit.

Personal pride

Perhaps the strongest motivator is personal pride; you may be motivated to do your best so that you can feel good inside your soul, because you know that you gave it your best shot.

What are the negative motivators?

There are two major categories of negative motivators:

  1. Fear
  2. Anger


You will act out of fear. You will be motivated to act to avoid danger, loss or threat.
So; you can use the threat of danger or loss to motivate others. You could say "Do it or else!"


Anger is a negative emotion. It can lead to revenge. People are strongly motivated by anger and revenge. So you may be able to motivate someone else by stirring up feeling of anger and revenge.

WARNING: Although the negative motivators do work, they are corrosive to the spirit and detrimental over the long term. Meaning, to live in a state of anger, fear, resentment, revenge or threat, is not conducive to long term productivity because negative emotions such as these burn out the soul-circuits.

Our Motivation Advice for Managers

Use the positive motivators.
Avoid using the negative motivators.
Use money, achievement, promise, praise, challenge, team spirit, rewards and incentives as your main means of motivation.
Use threats, fear, loss and painful consequences only occasionally and as a means of last resort.
Don't use negative motivators as your primary tool.
Use the seven positive motivators as your primary tool.

Creating more motivation(Blog)

FREE Training Needs Analysis Free Training Needs Analysis Logo

FREE Training Needs Analysis!

In order to get the best from your training, you need to discover your relative strengths and weaknesses. Take our FREE training needs analysis questionnaire now and get a report in less than five minutes!

Blogs by Email

Do you want to receive an email whenever we post a new blog? The blogs contain article 5-10 minutes long - ideal for reading during your coffee break!

Your Comments

Further Reading in Teamwork

  • The 7 People Management Skills
    To get the best from other people, there are seven main categories of people management skills that you should consciously work to improve.
    Read Article >
  • Coaching and Mentoring Skills
    Non-Directive Coaching and Mentoring Coaching and mentoring are both forms of non-directive teaching. Non directive teaching is radically different to directive teaching. Rather than a directive teacher saying, "Do this. Do that. Learn this. Learn that." a coach or mentor would use a series of provocative questions that would induce the...
    Read Article >
  • Team Problem Solving
    It is a fact that the most profitable ideas are usually the fruits of more than one brain. These ideas are usually the fruits of many minds working in harmony, to solve a shared problem. The best way to achieve this is using the Mastermind method.
    Read Article >
  • How can I improve team performance?
    How to improve team performance The future of your organisation depends upon the performance of the team. If the team performance is good, then your future will go well. If your team performance is no-good, then your future will be hell. Your organisation is made up of individuals. Those individuals come...
    Read Article >
  • Staff development training
    Staff development training You need to get the best performance from your staff. Why? Because the future survival and success of your organisation depends on the quality and quantity of their performance. If you get a good performance from the staff, then your chances for great success improve dramatically, and if...
    Read Article >