“Now, you have me confused,” Max protested. “Yes, the bonus becomes an entitlement, so it loses its power to motivate.”
“Is it possible,” I asked, “that the bonus never had the power to motivate in the first place? Let’s talk about you. You said, that sometimes you enjoy work. Why do you work?”
“I told you. I get a sense of accomplishment. Some of the work, I actually enjoy.”
“Sometimes, I get someone on the crew, it’s their first job. They become part of a team, working together and I can see a sense of pride on their face. As a manager, I enjoy that. I get my own sense of accomplishment.”
“And, their first paycheck?” I prompted.
“Yes, there is a smile on their face.”
“So, compensation is important, but if that is all there is, your team members will jump to another company for an extra dollar an hour. So, how do you build your system? How do you, as a manager, build your culture? Do you build your culture around a bonus, or do you build it around accomplishment? You only get what you focus on.”