Human Resource

Big Data Says Employees Want More Than Money

Big data is supposed to yield big, new insights. How about this one: Everything you know about managing IT is wrong.
Take motivating employees: money is not the most important thing. The idea that people respond only to financial incentives, or some other reward that works for our own best interest, is at best a half-truth put forward by economists.
So says influential data scientist Alex “Sandy” Pentland in his forthcoming book, Social Physics.
“Everybody tries to manage things with economic incentive; you reward people for doing well and penalize them for not doing better,” Pentland said in a phone interview.
What works better is to realize that people are social animals. We respond to exchanges not of money, but of interactions and favors.”You do things for people, they do things for you, and that stuff is actually more powerful than economic incentives,” Pentland says.

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