For the most part, people do not do things unless they are motivated to do so. Of course, I’m ignoring the various forms of coercion since they are always inappropriate. Actually, motivation, on its own, is not enough. People must also be able to do what is required of them and they must receive some kind of trigger to spur them into action. This is the basis of the Fogg behaviour model and was originally focused on UX design. Its application is much broader and it can be nicely integrated with a number of other useful viewpoints that I’ll be introducing below.
I’ve heard a few stories of late from people unhappy with the level of interference they are experiencing from managers who insist on particular ways of working. Ranging from detailed lists to hourly check-ins, this micromanagement undermines trust and subtracts value from both people and processes. It brings to mind several quotations but this one serves my purpose eloquently:
“The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good people to do what he wants done and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Essentially, the level of engagement exhibited by an individual is predicated on both their capability and their motivation. BJ Fogg’s behaviour model suggests that these two factors must both be present at the time of some trigger event. The Fogg model is typically used by designers to influence the flow of user interaction with software. Of course, it can also apply to behaviour in a variety of other situations.
If we start from a position that an individual, team or organization has the necessary capability to act in a certain way (often the case) then the driving factor that will influence any behavioural outcome will be their motivation.