I was never the most enthusiastic kid in the class when it
came to mathematics. I barely scrapped by. It wasn't until I took up art and
painting portraits that I began to see the value of numbers. I began to explore
the usefulness of mathematics in art and discovered its presence in music.
Recently, I discovered that mathematics and motivation have a relationship too.

Before I share the magic of their connection, I just want to
define the nature of motivation, and what I understand it to mean. The greatest
motivation source is from within. Motivation is a decision we make within
ourselves that we will apply our own efforts to achieve whatever success we
have focused on. It starts with a decision. Once the enthusiasm of the initial
decision fades, we have to rely on commitment and discipline fuelled by our own
internal value system to carry on till we achieve our desired outcome. We are
our own motivators, and in all reality - our own de-motivators.

Motivation from external sources, from sources outside of
our own thinking, is better described as incentives, or as inspiration. This
type of motivation plays an important role in keeping us committed and
enthusiastic to our original goal. It is the cherry on top, if you will. External
motivation cannot replace the role of our own internal value system in achieving
success, yet it plays an important role in our drive, especially when it comes
to dealing with motivation of other people involved in the process.

I will use an example of the manager and the employee
relationship to explain what I mean, as well as introduce the mathematics. In
this dynamic relationship there is a give and take. An employee has effort, energy
and skill to give in return for salary and promotions. The manager gives those
"rewards" of salary and promotions, and takes productivity and expertise.
Let's arrange this relationship as a mathematical formula.

__Employee Elements Manager Elements__
Effort + Reward = Pressure
+ Outcome

This "formula" has employee elements and manager
elements that need to balance in some way. That's the point of an equation. To
make what is on the left to balance with what is on the right. We put an "equals"
sign in the middle to say: the one side is equal to the other side.

In the table above, I have placed the Employee's formula
elements on the left. These include
Effort and Reward. What Effort is required from the employee in the
relationship? Well, they must use physical energy at work. They need to bring
some skill or ability and use them to the company benefit in some way, and they
must spend time at work. Time is the expensive bit in this equation.

So what about Reward? The employee looks to get something in
return for spending their effort for the company. Do they want a salary? Of
course! That's the standard reward in such a relationship. Do they want incentives? Yup, anything added
to the package will make the expectation of spending their effort more
attractive.

The elements for the Manager include Pressure and Outcome.
Pressure for the manager is twofold. The first part is the pressure that is
placed on the manager to generate results, to perform to deadlines. The second
part is the pressure that the manager exerts on the employee to produce the
results. These may be in the form of quality control, or deadlines, or
financial targets. The manager may put pressure on the employee in the form of
inspections or controls. Pressure relates to the effort a manager must exert to
generate the outcome.

Outcome for the manager is seen in the achievement of goals.
It is the deadline met. It is the obligations or orders fulfilled. It is the
financial target achieved. It may be seen as the bottom line. When I did this
formula I realised that the managers "outcome" was very similar to
the employees "reward", and I re-wrote the formula to look like this:

__Employee Elements Manager Elements__
Effort + Reward = Pressure
+ Reward

In an equation, if there is an element on one side, that is
the same as an element on the other side, we can remove that element from the equation.
They in effect cancel out each other. So, if I once again adjust the equation
to reflect that, it looks like this:

__Employee Elements Manager Elements__
Effort = Pressure

My formula has been reduced to Effort for the employee must
be equal to the pressure for the manager. Even though this is a formula, and
can be applied to all aspects of motivation, the elements of effort and
pressure and not fixed numbers. They are not constant values. Just as people
vary and change, as do circumstances and business outcomes, so does the values
for effort and pressure.

The lesson in motivation is balancing the dynamic relationship
between pressure and effort, assuming that reward is equal and of value to both
the manager and the employee. Too much pressure in relation to the effort, will
cause the manager to be stressed and unhappy. This will result in an unhappy
and unmotivated work environment.

Relaxed pressure from the manager that does not have
beneficial reward to both parties, yet has the employee producing great effort
- will result in the employee feeling undervalued and un-appreciated. You can
be sure that they will leave.

The effort and the reward must be a win for the Manager -
yup - the manager. The pressure and the reward must also be a win for the
employee. When I wrote that sentence for the first time, i realised that the
formula can be further reduced to this:

__Employee Elements Manager Elements__
Effort = Win = Pressure
= Win

**Therefore**

Win = Win

The awesome equation of Effort and Reward for the employee
is equal to the Pressure and Reward for the manager can be reduced to the
simple equation of: Win = Win.

The work environment and reward must be a win for the
employee, and the environment and outcomes must be a win for the managers. The
situation must be a win for the employee and a win for the manager. It must be
a win win situation.

The most effective external motivation principle is a win
win situation for both manager and employee. This principle will result in a
balanced environment of productive work in a great environment that is worth
the effort! A dream place for anyone to work in or manage.

__The Golden Motivation Equation! by John Usher__
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