Motivation and Innovation: Who Are Workers Serving?

by Frederick Herzberg



The article presents information on motivation and innovation. The proposed structures for innovation appears unrelated to the structure of what individual producers do on the job. It seems to me that any valid strategy for innovation must begin with that structure and must attempt to answer the question that the individual producer asks: "Who is he serving?" When individual jobs are structured so that the employee can experience service to a using client-another worker or consumer-the employee can develop the competence to ask for more appropriate support from the hierarchy, such as tools, guidance and civility. The outcome is organizational innovation. Such innovation must be based on personal productivity and should be sequenced to move from personal productivity to internal client productivity to the desired organizational productivity. The most effective sequence for restructuring the organization may be to "back in" to the system - focus on jobs that serve a client external to the organization first, then jobs that serve internal clients.

California Management Review

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Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

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