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Fear, threats, and disrespect are huge demotivators

No one likes being threatened in any condition. A threat or fear brings out the defensiveness in people.

There are many managers who believe more in the stick than in the carrot. There's a theory, by Douglas McGregor, Theory X and Theory Y. A Theory X manager believes that people inherently dislike work and will work only when pushed towards it. A Theory X manager believes employees are lazy and would work the minimum possible unless they are forced to do more. Hence all credit of work being done belongs to the Theory X manager, since work would not have happened at all if the Theory X manager didn't push it through.

The knowledge industry is just the wrong place for such managers, but unfortunately some do exist and sometimes they even flourish to reach senior positions. Such managers create an environment of fear where employees worry about bad consequences if they don't toe the line of the manager. They stop applying their best knowledge and judgment, and deliver on the lines of the prescription by the Theory X manager.

An environment where fear and threats run the system is highly demotivating for a knowledgeable individual.

Managers need to be Theory Y managers in the knowledge industry. They need to believe in the fact that every individual wishes to contribute their best, and a manager's job is to facilitate the team member to produce their best. Theory Y managers respect each individual. They understand that each individual's contribution is important and each person gets to contribute and deliver to the success of the team.

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