April 30, 2010

Punishment as a Motivator

Is punishment an effective motivator? Why or why not? What would be an example of effective punishment for your group?

I believe punishment can be an effective motivator depending on the make-up of the group and the type of punishment. Punishment can take on the form of formal reprimand, public scrutiny, personal disappointment, or removal of incentives. The challenge is in using punishment to change the actions or reactions of the group members in way that elicits future success. For some individuals removal of incentives will be motivation enough to refocus and get the job done whereas public scrutiny could actually hinder the response of the individual and cause them to be less productive than before.

My group is organized for the purpose of helping individuals reach personal health goals to increase their quality of life. When we do not reach goals we have let down those we were trying to help. Our punishment is the personal dissatisfaction that we feel knowing we have missed an opportunity to help someone who truly needed the services we offer.

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