For Best Results, Forget the Bonus

“Do this and you’ll get that.” These six words sum up the popular way in which American business strives to improve performance in the workplace. And it is very popular. At least three of four American corporations rely on some sort of incentive program. After all, such incentives are basically rewards, and rewards work, don’t they?

The answer, surprisingly, is mostly no. While rewards are effective at producing temporary compliance, they are strikingly ineffective at producing lasting changes in attitudes and behavior…

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