Year: 2019

If All You Have is a Hammer

“If all you have is a hammer, all you will see is a nail.” This is a pretty well-known saying, and it’s also an introduction to the ideas of frame, worldview, and culture. (The saying is usually attributed to Abraham Maslow, so often it’s sometimes called Maslow’s Hammer. As far …

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RAMPS – S is for Safety

This entry is part of 15 in the series RAMPS

Safety — the sense of being valued and accepted, of belonging — is a powerful motivator for many individuals. A lack of safety often seems like a simple switch, instantly shutting down talented and capable people. (This topic of safety is a minefield right now. The absence of a safe …

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How I Work – Preaching And Practicing

This entry is part of 1 in the series How I Work

A respondent asks, "Are you always able to practice what you preach? I don’t mean intentionally dropping but unintentionally as your mind is sloppy. I have great difficulties in applying 100% of my "knowledge" 100% of the time." Sometimes questions open up huge areas with lots of issues and subtexts …

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RAMPS – Purpose is Service to a Greater

This entry is part of 15 in the series RAMPS

RAMPS: P is for Purpose, the sense one is serving a valued "greater". Those who rate this band of the motivational spectrum highly can be go-to workhorses, but only if we keep them connected to their valued greater. If rhythm is largely focused on the distribution of "feels good" through …

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RAMPS – Ways To Affect Mastery

This entry is part of 15 in the series RAMPS

RAMPS: Affecting mastery, the sense an individual has that she is growing in a way she values, means first jiggling our ideas about efficiency & relevance in work, then jumping in to the opportunities that jiggling will reveal. We talked about the widespread pernicious conceptual cluster we call "finish-line efficiency": …

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RAMPS – Mastery is Opportunity to Grow

This entry is part of 15 in the series RAMPS

RAMPS: M is for Mastery, the sense that my work is actively helping me grow, along some dimension I value. When my motivational spectrum calls for a high degree of mastery, I do my best work when it is just a little over my head. People sometimes confuse the drive …

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RAMPS – Ways to Affect Autonomy

This entry is part of 15 in the series RAMPS

Autonomy is the sense of free motion in a team. I adjust the levels of this by expressing important needs as problems, letting go of unimportant needs, and managing risk by a combination of acceptance, next-stepping, and iteration. The more we need creative technical work, the more we have to …

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RAMPS – Autonomy is Freedom to Move

This entry is part of 15 in the series RAMPS

Autonomy is a powerful factor in motivation, and the more creative & technical the work, the more likely autonomy is to figure largely in the maker’s motivational spectrum. Here are three different ways I work when I am geeking out. Each of these is about equal in probability to be …

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