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Why Motivating People Doesn't Work . . . and What Does by Susan Fowler

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is there ever a time when rewards are appropriate?

Rewards may not be appropriate, but you might decide they are necessary. For example, the FAA is offering a $10,000 reward to anyone reporting a person pointing lasers at airplanes in flight. The danger posed to pilots, passengers, and people on the ground was too great to ignore. It’s a sad commentary that you would sell out a friend for $10,000. It is even sadder to think that if you knew people were threatening lives using a laser, you wouldn’t either do whatever it took to stop them yourself or voluntarily turn them in because it’s the right thing to do. Rewards are necessary if people don’t have the self-regulation necessary to do the right thing through mindfulness, ...

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