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Arnaud Halvick


Final Thesis
[In this paper we will learn that our brain functions imply different kinds of capabilities and needs which are
closely linked to motivation and leadership]

I. Preamble | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 1

I. Preamble ........................................................................................ 4
II. Introduction ................................................................................... 6
III. Part I Our Brain ............................................................................ 8
A. The Triune Brain Model .................................................................................... 8
1. The Reptilian Cortex .................................................................................................... 9
2. The Limbic System ..................................................................................................... 11
3. The Neo Cortex .......................................................................................................... 13
4. Defining needs and fulfilling them ............................................................................ 17
B. Unlocking our brain ........................................................................................ 19
a. The Reptilian brain ............................................................................................... 19
b. The Limbic System ............................................................................................... 20
c. The Neo Cortex .................................................................................................... 23
C. Different types of intelligence ........................................................................ 25
a. Spatial ................................................................................................................... 27
b. Linguistic .............................................................................................................. 27
c. Logical / Mathematical ........................................................................................ 27
d. Bodily / Kinesthetic .............................................................................................. 28
e. Musical ................................................................................................................. 29
f. Interpersonal ........................................................................................................ 29
g. Intrapersonal ........................................................................................................ 30
h. Naturalistic ........................................................................................................... 30
i. Existential ............................................................................................................. 31


I. Preamble | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 2

IV. Part II Motivation ....................................................................... 33
A. Introduction to the concept ........................................................................... 33
1. What is motivation? .................................................................................................. 33
2. How to motivate and lead a team? ........................................................................... 35
B. From basic needs to great desires .................................................................. 36
1. Different kinds of needs ............................................................................................ 37
2. Motivation factors ..................................................................................................... 42
C. The Mechanism of Motivation ....................................................................... 49
1. Reinforcement ........................................................................................................... 49
2. Equity Theory ............................................................................................................. 54
3. Expectancy Theory .................................................................................................... 58
4. The Motivation Pattern ............................................................................................. 64
V. Leadership .................................................................................... 67
A. Leader or Manager? ....................................................................................... 67
B. The best leadership style ................................................................................ 69
1. The Old Way .............................................................................................................. 69
2. What situation? ......................................................................................................... 71
3. The Leader Behavior .................................................................................................. 72
C. Primal Leadership ........................................................................................... 75
1. Emotional intelligence domains and associated competences................................. 76
a. Personal Competences ........................................................................................ 76
b. Social Competences ............................................................................................. 78
2. The leadership styles ................................................................................................. 80
a. The Visionary Leader ............................................................................................ 81
b. The Coaching Style ............................................................................................... 83
c. The Affiliative Style .............................................................................................. 85
d. The Democratic Style ........................................................................................... 86

I. Preamble | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 3

e. The Pacesetting style ........................................................................................... 87
f. The Commanding Style ........................................................................................ 89
VI. Conclusions .................................................................................. 91
VII. Recommendations ....................................................................... 92
VIII. Bibliography ................................................................................. 93
A. Books .............................................................................................................. 93
B. Images ............................................................................................................. 93
IX. Indexes .............................................. Error! Bookmark not defined.


I. Preamble | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 4

I. Preamble
We develop the most advanced functions of our brain by learning and getting experience.
With this acquired knowledge, we are able to write books, to teach, to share which give birth to
more knowledge, more science and more information databases. We use our intelligence for science,
for creating technology and generating knowledge. Then we use all of this to study ourselves and
understand our world and ourselves. This is something very important to take in account because
today most people dont realize that we still have a lot to learn from our body and brain. They dont
realize that they dont use their full potential and that our body needs to be handled properly if you
want to get the best out of it.
We keep discovering more about these needs each day. Actually, science enables us to
understand better the needs of our body and to satisfy them, revealing needs we didnt know before
but which were already there (e.g.: a certain type of vitamin could boost your morale, a certain type
of protein could be used to live longer, doing this or this could make you run faster, improve your
focus). Thanks to science we also get a better view of how our emotions and intelligence work by
studying our brain, how it reacts to different kinds of factors.
Nowadays, when you observe most people they give the feeling that they dont really care
about their body. They think they just need to eat, drink and sleep for it to function properly. They
also dont realize that you can actually not only act on your body, but also on your brain to improve
your overall abilities. Actually, you can modify the way you think, the way you feel by working on the
mechanisms of your brain.
Its like a car: you can just go to the gas station when needed and thats it. But you can also
do everything needed to maintain it so works better and last more time. This is the same thing for
our body, it is a very complex engine and if you dont take care of it you will eventually end sick, have
serious trouble and eventually die sooner. Also, you can take driving lessons; you can practice by
yourself and find ways to be a better driver. Same for your brain, you can learn how your brain
functions work and improve them. This is one of the main reasons I am writing this thesis: to
understand myself, improve me and then improve others.
It is obvious than there are numerous way to improve the way the body work, essentially
through nutrition and physical activities. However, improving mental activities is far more complex
due to the fact that these abilities become greater over the time. Indeed, each generation learn from
the previous one and so on, each generation has more knowledge, more technology, and more
power. Nowadays, with the democratization of internet we reach a potential never reached before.
In a few seconds I can find any information, know about anything and thus improve my mental

I. Preamble | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 5

abilities. This is an important shift of our modern society, a crucial step in the evolution of mankind.
This shift will for sure be reflected in the corporate world. We will find new ways to productivity and
This document deals with the understanding of our brains functions and links it to such
things as motivation and leadership. This work is very useful for analyzing ourselves and others and
then act. You will realize that by identifying your different types of intelligence and needs, you will be
able to understand and use them better.



II. Introduction | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 6

II. Introduction
Every human being is born with a brain made of about 100 billion of cells that we can use
throughout our lives in order to accomplish things. These cells can be used to build emotions,
intelligence and our body. Nevertheless, this capacity is pretty weak unless we connect all these cells.
By understanding and connecting the different types of intelligence our brain have, we can develop it
further and create combinations leading to greater potential.
The trick for improving our potential is to connect the different parts of our brain properly.
The better we connect our different capabilities, the better we become. This works for any kind of
task: learning activities, teaching, practicing sports, being any kind of artist (painter, dancer, singer )
and so on.
Lets take a simple example: hockey player. Given that its a sport and he mostly needs to use
his body, he could say that he just need to train its physical abilities, to get stronger; faster; suppler
Would it be enough for him to reach a level high enough for being a sport captain of a
national team? The answer is obviously no. Even if he just want to be a national player and not the
captain. Why? Its because for reaching the top of sport league he needs to work on his mental
abilities. He needs to understand the game, the strategies, how to attack, counter attack, how the
other team use to work, what kind of player it is composed of, define the strengths, weaknesses,
opportunities and threats and so on.
Here I just talked about a few intellectual skills, but he would also need to learn emotional
skills. His personal life can affect him, the relationship he has with other players, when he is angry,
when he is tired, when he is sad and so on. Emotional skills have to be developed for handling better
negative and unproductive emotions and to maximize the positive and productive emotions.
For businesspeople, it would work the other way. We could think that we only need our
intelligence to solve problem and maybe some creativity sometimes to find some original solutions.
Nevertheless businesspeople will more often forget their body. The body has needs and if you fulfill
them then the brain, which is a part of the body, will work better so the overall performance will be
It has been proven that, for people practicing sport on a regular basis, a 30min workout will
boost productivity (intellectual and emotional) for 2 hours. The body wakes up, produces hormones
and you get a huge boost. Even more interesting, the sleep is improved and the overall feeling of
having a lot of energy increases. With the proper nutrition, you dont even need coffee anymore to
wake you up in the morning.

II. Introduction | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 7

Now we will have to define a little bit more the capabilities of our brain and how to use
them. The positive aspect of this study is that its never too late to learn, that we can still do it even if
we had missed the opportunity for doing it. The negative part is that if we dont work on it, it wont
improve by itself and it will be lost.
For my part, I needed to work a lot on my emotional intelligence. Ive done it now for
something like one year. One year ago I was really bad at emotional intelligence and knew it, but it
improved and it keeps improving. What is important to understand here is that its a never ending
job. Even if we would live a thousand years we would still have to work on our capabilities because
they keep evolving throughout the history as the civilization evolve.
My work is divided in three parts:
Part I Our brain: we will learn here fundamentals of our brain functioning. These elements
are necessary to understand human beings globally
Part II Motivation: we will talk about the mechanisms of motivation and realize that they
are linked to our brain functions.
Part III Leadership: we will see that leaders are necessary for motivating people and that
there are many way to lead them, all of which can be useful depending on the situation.
The purpose of my work here is to provide vital elements for understanding the behaviors of
people and how to motivate them. It is a vital knowledge from improving ourselves as well as
improving others.


III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 8

III. Part I Our Brain
This part is dedicated to understanding the basics of brain functioning. It is not supposed to
be a scientific explanation of the brain because we are not scientists. The objective here is to give
elements enabling us to improve our relation to ourselves and others by having a better
understanding of our behaviors.
First, I will expose a theory facilitating the global understanding of our brain. There will be a
description of our basic types of intelligence and what we can do with it. We will also see that each
person is different and that there are genetic factors which increase these differences especially
between men and women. The purpose is to help us find out which person is more likely to
accomplish which type of work.
A. The Triune Brain Model
This classification in 3 main areas physical, emotional and intellectual capabilities is
based on the Triune Brain Model highlighted by Paul D. MacLean in the 1960s.

Most scientists dont use this model because they prefer to see the human brain as the
agglomeration of many functions rather than classifying types of intelligence. They are right in doing
this because we have more than 3 types of intelligence. However, we actually do have 3 main areas
in our brain with different kind of capabilities. This is the result of the process of evolution which has
led to the sequential apparition of different stratums in the brain of living creatures.
It started with the most basic functions (Reptilian Cortex), then with more advanced
function (Limbic System) and finally with the most advanced functions (Neo Cortex). Birds and
Reptiles only have the Reptilian Cortex. Most other living creatures have the Reptilian and Limbic
We humans have the 3 cortexes. This is why we are able to do all what we do. The Neo
Cortex is what enables us to have rational logic which differentiates us from all other creatures. It is
important to understand that these 3 cortexes are connected and work together even if their
capabilities are distinct. We will now have quick review of each cortex.


III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 9

1. The Reptilian Cortex
Usually called the Reptilian Brain, this is the oldest brain. Every living creature possessing a
brain has it. We call it Reptilian because the first creatures to have it were reptilians like dinosaurs,
snakes, lizards and son on. Nowadays, many creatures are still equipped only with this basic brain
and every creature still has this cortex (including us).
This part of our brain is responsible for our most basic behaviors: aggressiveness, fear,
dominance, territoriality and paranoia. It contains all the basic instincts for survival of the species.
Humans still have these instincts and they are easily recognizable even though they are now mixed
with more complex thoughts and emotions.
The Reptilian Cortex is filled with very simple behaviors and keeps repeating them over and
over again. It cant learn from past experiences. This brain controls our muscles, balance and the
physiological functions like the body temperature, the heartbeat, the breathing and the digestion.
These functions are very basic and cant be controlled like emotions or thoughts. It stores instincts
and this is why most creatures seem to know how to react in nature even though they have not
learned it. These behaviors are stored in this part of the brain and cant be improved. It is an
automated answer to a situation. Human beings still have this cortex and these instincts but they are
combined with our intellect and emotions. These behaviors are still playing vital roles in our society.
You may however notice that wise people tend to give less importance to behaviors linked to these
basic instincts of human nature.
Something interesting with the fact that we are smarter than other species is that we can
learn to use it better. This is what you do when you try to learn more about your body and to have a

III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Reptilian Cortex 10

better relation with him. It is very subtle but by improving the knowledge you have of your body and
by practicing regular physical activity, you learn more about it. You can for example perceive the
effect of different types of food and drinks on the performance of your body which is an important
step for a natural improvement of your overall nutrition.
As an example, when you eat sugar your body produces insulin which makes you feel a
boost for a short period. After this period you feel the opposite, it is like a little depression so you
often want to eat something and feel a loss of motivation. When you are used to work with your
body you realize more easily this kind of things and then you take control over your nutrition and
also your physical activities. Indeed, many elements can influence the functioning of our body like
exposition to different kinds of temperature, to light or night, the levels of oxygen and so on. Most
creatures dont have the capabilities to fully understand it like humans can. We can reach a great
understanding of our body not only through working with him but also thanks to science and
The Reptilian Cortex represents our body and we could say that he is responsible for the
Physical Survival. This means that the information contained in this part of the brain has for
objective to enable our body to survive to its environment (nature and predators) and to make it
work properly (feeding, drinking, breathing, sleeping).


III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Limbic System 11

2. The Limbic System
It is also called the Paleomammalian Brain because it corresponds to the brain of most
mammals. As you may have observed, most mammals have emotions (a dog can cry or be happy for
example) while reptilians dont (they just want to satisfy their physiological needs). This part of the
brain makes that difference. Human beings are very advanced mammals and therefore have this
Limbic System.
It enables mammals to have emotions involved in sexual behavior (and the relationship going
with), parental behavior (protecting and feeding) and other social behavior (playing, fighting and
sharing). MacLean observed that everything in this emotional system was either a positive or
negative feeling. This is what survival is based on: avoid pain and look for pleasure.
There are great improvements here which make mammals more powerful thinker than
reptilians. This Limbic System enables the mammals to have greater memory and more complex
thoughts (still very basic compared to us). The point is that the Limbic System associates emotions to
memories. This makes possible for mammals to remember and to learn from previous experience
which includes observing other creatures. Therefore, it prevents the creatures from doing the same
mistakes again and again and from doing mistakes others did. Also, they will repeat positive
experiences. In other words, it improves their ability to avoid pain and increase pleasure. However, in
order to learn something properly this part of the brain has to be taught various times the lesson (= it
wont learn the first time in most cases).
Many mammals behave in a way so it seems that they are very intelligent. They have social
behaviors and sometime we can communicate with them. It is the case for monkeys, dolphins, dogs
and so on. However, the communication is still very basic. Our imagination makes us think that they
truly understand us (like when someone is talking to a dog). Actually, they only understand our
emotions and base their reactions on their memory. This means that if the previous experience was
positive the behavior will be repeated, if negative it will be avoided. All our rational thinking and our
modern society is impossible to understand for any other creature on earth because they dont have
a Neo Cortex, or not as developed as ours when they have one.
For humans this part of the brain is the key to our positive and negative feelings about
anything and also to what can get our attention. It is what makes us unpredictable and enables us to
have creative behaviors. It is widely connected to our Neo Cortex which makes our emotions work
differently from other mammals. This is why we have more complex emotions which make our
memories more complex. This is very important to understand this because it is how our emotional
intelligence evolves through years: memories charged with complex emotions lead to new more

III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Limbic System 12

complex emotions and thus more complex memories. This is why a kid will be easily satisfied
emotionally (playing and having fun) while and adult will have more needs (building a family, having
a career) and older people get wiser (better management of emotions and different vision of life).
The Limbic System is in other words responsible for our Social Survival. It enables species to
have empathy, a social status, to integrate a group, to have beliefs, feelings. It is linked to positive or
negative feelings: motivation/demotivation, success/failure, happiness/sadness and so on. There is
some essential specificity to remember about this Limbic System:
There is absolutely no logic in this part of the brain. It means that the Limbic System
cant solve 1+1=2. It cant understand language, it cant have rational thoughts.
It works according to memory. Previous experience was positive = behavior
repeated, if negative = behavior avoided. As simple as this.
It is some sort of filter, it detects and selects information and then transmit it to the
Neo Cortex. If the information is positive it will stimulate the Neo Cortex. If the
information is very negative and stimulate bad memories it can block the whole
brain, impeding rational thinking of our Neo Cortex
It is responsible for our long term memory because it stores all our memories,
whether they are positive or negative.
Even though it cant build rational thoughts, the Limbic System plays a cognitive role
in our thinking because it enables us to build a visual knowledge through memory.
This knowledge however is emotional and impulsive.


III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Neo Cortex 13

3. The Neo Cortex
In Paleomammalian we have Paleo which stands in Greek for Ancient. In Neo Cortex or
Neomammalian brain we have Neo which stands for New
. It corresponds to the most advanced
brain. The primate mammals were the first one to have it and then the human species which evolved
from them.
Evolution of the human brain

This brain contains the most advanced cognitive functions which makes us so different from
other animals. MacLean said that this Cortex is The mother of invention and father of abstract
. Thanks to it we have all our rational thoughts, the ability for language, abstract thoughts,
planning, perception, consciousness and all the most evolved way of thinking that other mammals
dont have. Also, it has the particularity of learning very quickly even complex concept. The Limbic
System is not capable to do learn easily and quickly something complex. For example, if you read a

http://fr.wiktionary.org/wiki/Annexe:Racines_grecques, accessed on 08-02-2011
Alan Kazlev, October 2003, The Triune Brain, http://www.kheper.net/topics/intelligence/MacLean.htm,
accessed on 08-02-2011

III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Neo Cortex 14

manual for using a product you just bought, you quickly understand it thanks to the Neo Cortex. This
is why animals cant reach our level of intelligence unless their brain evolves or unless we would find
a way to implant a human Neo Cortex in their head. Even though you try to teach things to an animal
all his life long he will never reach our level whatever is his potential (here level means being able to
understand all the world we are living in, including social behaviors, economics, philosophy, sciences,
politics and so on). Even the most advanced creatures, including dolphins. There are many myths
about dolphins being able to be almost as intelligence as us but they have been invalidated. They
have indeed a very complex Neo Cortex but it is used for specific acoustic functions
It is playing a very important role in our thinking and represents 80% of our brains mass.
Some species have this cortex but it is so small that it makes no difference in their behavior. Some
other species have a bigger neo cortex with better intelligence but it is nothing in comparison with
our intelligence. Usually, carnivores have more developed Neo Cortex, especially hunters. Indeed,
hunting is a better exercise for developing the brain than just eating plants (need for more strategy).
The Human Neo Cortex is divided in two parts: right and left hemispheres, or the famous
right and left brains. It is interesting to note that the right hemisphere control the left part of our
body and the left hemisphere controls the right part of our body. But the most interesting thing
about these two hemispheres is that the left brain has linear, rational, mathematical and verbal
functions while the right brain is more about spatial, musical, artistic and abstract thoughts.

Tony Smith, http://www.tony5m17h.net/Dolphin.html, accessed on 08-02-2011

III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Neo Cortex 15

Main Functions of the Left and Right Brains

Uses logic
Detail oriented
Facts rule
Words and language
Present and past
Math and science
Can comprehend
Order/pattern perception
Knows object name
Reality based
Forms strategies
Uses feeling
"Big picture" oriented
Imagination rules
Symbols and images
Present and future
Philosophy & religion
Can "get it" (i.e. meaning)
Spatial perception
Knows object function
Fantasy based
Presents possibilities
Risk taking
As you can see, our brain has functions to enable us to have complementary point of view of
the same things. Here is the key of most of our confrontations: some people use more their left brain
and others more their right brain. The conflict arises because these functions are opposed and thus
people give more importance to arguments which are opposed as well. This is very important to
remind this because it is mostly why there is a confrontation in politics. Right Wing politics will tend
to give more importance to economics and logic while Left Wing politics will give more importance to
social behaviors and beliefs. Thus we are divided because of a difference in our brain usage.
Another particularity of this Neo Cortex is that it is pure intelligence. In other words, there
are no emotions in there. We could compare it to a computer analyzing situations and finding
solutions depending on the data entered. For this reason we are able to partially control our
emotions thanks to our Neo Cortex; other mammals cant because emotions are their most advanced
way of thinking. We have the ability to think rationally and can therefore control ourselves.
However, the Limbic System can easily hijack our rational thinking and makes us lose control
over the situation. This happen very often for most of us and we have to learn over time how to deal
with it. Same thing for the Reptilian Brain: our fears can override any rational thought and makes us
take bad decision under high stress especially if something endangers our direct survival (e.g.:
someone trying to kill us). We will discuss more about this topic later and learn what we have to do
in order to unlock the Neo Cortex.

AAP, October 5, 2007, The Right Brain Versus Left brain, http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/weird/the-
right-brain-vs-left-brain/story-e6frev20-1111114577583, accessed on 08-02-2011

III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | The Neo Cortex 16

The Neo Cortex is responsible for our Intellectual Survival. It helps us to solve problems, to
learn, to get a job, to build our lives. It plays a great role in our social life but dont use emotions. It
has no creativity, no spontaneity. It cant answer to a stimulus by a simple behavior; it has to think
about it. Even for social activities; it can understands how they work and try to apply solution for
going through issues linked to it. This is a powerful machine which enables us to have all the complex
thoughts we have and also enable us to reach consciousness. We are conscious that we live, that we
have emotions; impulses and we can take control over them thanks to our intelligence.



III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | Defining needs and fulfilling them 17

4. Defining needs and fulfilling them
This model has been criticized by many scientists. The mainframe is correct: different
stratums of brain appeared through evolution and gave birth to our modern brain. However,
considering these 3 parts of our brain as independent would be wrong. Also, most scientists prefer
considering our brain as made of more different and specific areas. Nevertheless, we know for sure
that these 3 big areas are for real because the composition of the neurons is different in each area.
The cells themselves are different and this is why the capabilities are different.
In our brain we have actually many different sub-areas associated to different capabilities
(vision, language, movement and so on). Still the most advanced functions are located in the Neo
Cortex and the most basic in the Reptilian. From all these capabilities are born new capabilities by
combining them all. This is why our society and our personality are so various and complex. We
combined our capabilities during centuries and this led to our modern society. We learn from
previous generation and keep improving the power of our Neo Cortex.
The Triune Brain Model is still widely used for the reason that using this model is very simple
and helps to have a simplified version of our functioning without being a scientist. For people like us
it makes it easier because there is a clear distinction between reptiles, simple mammals and humans.
Also, thanks to this model we can define 3 main types of needs:
Physiological Needs: eating, breathing, drinking, sleeping They related to the
Reptilian Brain and are need essential for our survival. If our survival is threatened
we usually sense fear.
Emotional Needs: having social activities, time for personal pleasure, realizing
personal ambitions or projects They are related to the Limbic System which wants
pleasure and avoidance of pain.
Intellectual Needs: solving problems, creating solution, progressing, improving
They are related to the Neo Cortex which wants to use these functions or he gets
This model is also very popular because it corresponds to popular visions of the human being.
Many visions show the human has having a Head (for intelligence), a Heart (for emotions) and
Gut (for courage = going against fear which come from our Reptilian instincts). In philosophy, it is
referred as Thinking, Feeling and Willing. You can find many other ways to define the human
being according to these 3 main criteria.


III. Part I Our Brain | The Triune Brain Model | Defining needs and fulfilling them 18

Personally, I have a very specific way to link our brain to our world:
I think that our Reptilian Brain is linked to our body and thus to our environment. It
was the first part of our brain to appear because it was needed for managing our
body depending on our environment. This is why we have to take care of the Nature
and our body. If we dont, we cant live properly because our most basic needs are
Then our Limbic System has developed for creating stronger links between species
and more advanced way of thinking, especially by memorizing positive and negative
feelings linked to situations. It is an archaic version of the Neo Cortex which solves
problems only by memory. Is represents our emotions, creativity, social links and
behavior. Thus it is vital for our survival to have social activities.
Our Neo Cortex evolved because our specie had to solve problems and needed
advanced capabilities for building more complex social behaviors. The cognitive
functions of the Limbic system were not sufficient and it needed something else. It
represents science, mathematics, philosophy, and every other intellectual behavior.
This vision is linked to the Evolution Theory of Darwin. It considers that we evolved according
to specific needs which became more complex over time. Nowadays, intellectual and emotional
needs lead us to the next step of evolution. We are evolving through intelligence.
Now we have to keep this model in mind because we will use it later on for problem solving
in the corporate world. Indeed, the corporate world is composed of human and they all have these
needs. The objective of the company is to make profit. To make profit, the employees have to be
productive. To be productive the employees must have their needs fulfilled. To fulfill these needs you
have to find and understand them.


III. Part I Our Brain | Unlocking our brain | Defining needs and fulfilling them 19

B. Unlocking our brain
There is a problem preventing our Neo Cortex to work properly: the Reptilian Brain wants to
be sure that we will survive and our Limbic System wants to be happy. Unfortunately, the Neo Cortex
cant work properly unless the other parts of the brains are ready. This is why it is fundamental to
know more about our body and our emotions.
It seems that there is a logical order for unlocking every part of our brain: from the oldest to
the newest. First one is the Reptilian Brain, the second one the Limbic System and the third the Neo
a. The Reptilian brain
This is where all our most basic functions are, mostly linked to the body. It represents the
intelligence of our body. This means that this part is closely linked to our physical integrity. If the
body is not OK neither our emotions nor intellect can be. A good example is a risk of death or of
being beaten or even to fall; it would generate fear and impede our brain to think properly until this
fear disappears. Others needs like hunger and thirst is vital for the Reptilian brain to function. Try to
focus on something while you feel fear or are hungry and you will see how difficult it is compared to
a regular state. This equal for little things like when you need to go to the bathroom, are exposed
to high or low temperatures and so on. If our body doesnt feel good it generates a need and it
becomes the most important need at the moment because it is linked to our physical integrity and
wellness. In other words, our brain is made in a sense that maintaining its existence is the most
important thing at the moment, more than accomplishing something or being happy.
This can be bypassed if the person decides by herself to go ahead despites of the risk of
death and other troubles. A warrior may decide to go into battle and die for his beliefs but he has to
make incredible effort to overwhelm his basic instincts telling him to survive. Anyway, our brain will
always be willing to survive, this is why fear can be controlled and not avoided. You can only force
yourself to go against your instinct. This is why courage, will, gut and so on refers to this part of
the brain; because you go against your deepest and most difficult to control fears, against your will to
In a corporate environment, a risk of dying is unlikely to happen, at least in most developed
countries. Nevertheless, it can happen if someone from the mafia or terrorist groups (like ETA
Spain) is threatening you and asks you to pay taxes then you will be confronted to this fear. You may
decide to pay for preserving your physical integrity or to go against your fear for being brave and
showing that these persons should be fought. Generally speaking, handling this part of our brain will


III. Part I Our Brain | Unlocking our brain | Defining needs and fulfilling them 20

be mostly about being healthy and dealing with our physiological needs. Physiological needs, even if
not threatening our lives, have to be taken care of or it is hard to think properly.
One last important thing is all the mechanisms of our body that we can learn to know in
order to improve its global functioning. For example, we know that a regular physical activity is very
good for our physical health but also for the mental health. You feel more energy, sleep better, relax
and many hormones and other substances affect positively your body and mind. Same for nutrition;
a good nutrition will makes you feel better overall and you will be healthier on the long run. All these
needs are linked to our Reptilian Brain. Interestingly, we need the other parts of our brain, the most
advanced ones, in order to understand all of this and to improve it. However, even if you need
knowledge and intelligence in order to understand your body properly, it is not the unique way to
know it better and use it better. Actually, when practicing a regular physical activity and according
more importance to nutrition, you can learn how to feel your body better. This isnt something
youre born with: you have to learn it. It is some kind of body intelligence. Indeed, when you eat
something it will make something. Depending on the sensation, positive or negative, you will know if
it was good or not for your body. Same for sport, how many people have your heard saying I know
that sport is good for me because when I go training regularly I really feel better? The problem is
that people often stop taking care of their body. They only do it temporarily, usually when they feel
bad or sick. As we know, taking care of the body is not just a question of being good looking for
going to the beach. It is a fundamental need of our Reptilian Brain, of our body. This is will makes you
feel better and live longer. Thus it should have as much consideration as emotional and intellectual
needs. Maybe even more given that by fulfill the needs of your body you unlock you Reptilian Brain
and thus the full potential of the other parts of your brain. But for unlocking the most advanced one,
the Neo Cortex, you have to first deal with your emotions.
b. The Limbic System
Once we are physically ready we can get our emotions to function properly. Then we have
to make sure that our emotions works well in order to feel good and thus thinking well.
There is something very important to understand about our emotions: we rely on
connections with other people for our own emotional stability. This is what is called the Open-Loop
nature of the Limbic System, of our emotions. This part of our brain rely mostly on external sources
for maintaining its stability, it is the center of our social skills and needs. This enables people to come
to the emotional rescue of someone else. If you feel that someone feels depressed or anxious you
can go to this person with a positive attitude and share feelings which makes this person feel better.

III. Part I Our Brain | Unlocking our brain | Defining needs and fulfilling them 21

Despite of the fact that emotions are irrational and not really necessary to many of our tasks, we still
have to deal with them and they are very useful when handled properly.
Some studies proved that in intensive care units, the presence of someone comforts the
person being treated. It lowers the blood pressure and the secretion of fatty acids that block
. Also, some other studies proved than incidents of intense stress (health problems, risk of
getting fired, financial issues, family issues and so on) occurring three times or more in a year have
for consequence an increased death rate for socially isolated people. This impact is close to zero for
people with many close relationships
. Scientists also call the Open-Loop an interpersonal limbic
regulation because people transmit signals to each other that can modify their hormone levels; their
heart rate, their sleep rhythms and even immune function of the body of someone else
. You can
easily notice that when you are alone and then meet someone you feel differently. Many things
change in your body, even if you are calling a friend and are far away from each other. When we
enter in contact with people this feeling is even stronger and usually our emotions shift in order to be
aligned together. This means that the contact with other people affect our body, our physiology by
affecting our emotions which makes our brain functioning differently. This is very interesting because
it shows that the Limbic System and the Reptilian Brain affect each other. Actually we will see that all
the different parts of our brain interact with each other. Even though there is an order for fulfilling
the needs, this order does not work for interactions between different areas.
The emotions spread between people when they talk to each other, even when they dont
talk. When someone is very emotional, the emotions of this person tend to spread quicker than
others. We all have the ability to feel others emotions but it is very hard to perceive and need some
training. When people have a long discussion, at the end of the discussion they usually have the
same physiological profiles. It doesnt mean that they agree with each other, just that they have the
same feeling. This phenomenon is called mirroring. When working in team it has a great impact
over productivity because it impacts the overall mood of the group. A cohesive group will usually
share their moods, emotional history and even hot buttons. In the end, it can make them more
efficient because they know how to manage each others emotions.
Another vital element of emotion sharing and emotional stability is that positive moods
spread faster than negative moods. This means that cheerfulness and warmth will spread easily and
irritability and depression will hardly spread. The reason is that we try to protect our own mood, our
emotional stability because its a need of our Limbic System. Thus when someone comes to us with

Primal leadership, Page 7
Primal leadership, Page 7
Primal leadership, Page 8

III. Part I Our Brain | Unlocking our brain | Defining needs and fulfilling them 22

negative emotions we try to close ourselves in order to avoid absorbing their negative emotions.
Nevertheless, it is sometimes difficult to do so and it happens that negative people can have a really
bad impact on their relationships.
This occurred to me in France in Lyon when I moved there to study from Geneva,
Switzerland. It took me several years before realizing it. French people tend to be very negative: they
criticize more and look often at the negative sides of the situation while very rarely at the positive
ones. I understood later on that this was the reason for some of my depressive states and that I
started to behave like them. When I was at school and people were saying that the work they have to
do sucks, professors stupid and spend their time criticizing even things out of school, it affected
negatively my mind. This negative thinking leads to emotional disorders.
Negative emotions affect deeply your overall functions. It is the same in working groups:
upbeat moods boost cooperation, fairness and performance while the opposite leads to fighting,
backstabbing, individualism and failure.


III. Part I Our Brain | Unlocking our brain | Defining needs and fulfilling them 23

c. The Neo Cortex
The full power of the Neo Cortex can be unlocked once the Reptilian Brain and the Limbic
System are functioning properly. But paradoxically, it is the Neo Cortex which gives us the power to
understand the lower parts of our brain and make them function properly. Moreover, even though
the Neo Cortex can be hijacked by the lower parts of the brain (because of fear, love or whatever) he
can still defend ourselves.
For example, in a very bad or stressful situation, someone who is trained to face it can
control fear and emotions using knowledge and intelligence. Lets say that you face a stressful
situation at work. You know that your emotions impede your good thinking. Therefore, you take a
deep breath because you know that it will provide more oxygen to your brain, lower your heart beat
and make it easier for you to think properly. Then you can analyze your thinking and identify
emotions (= irrational thinking) and stop considering them. Instead, you build a rational thinking of
the situation by asking yourself the basic questions of What?, When?, Who?, How? and so
on. By basing your answer on facts and rational decision you can stabilize your emotions by
overriding them and replacing them by positive emotions linked to solving the situation. In other
words, you replaced anxiety and fear by motivation for problem solving.
This is one of the main powers of the Neo Cortex but not the only one. With the knowledge
you gathered and the management of your body (= nutrition, physical activities, health) and your
emotions (social activities, personal feelings) you can stabilize your Reptilian Brain and Limbic
System. When its done you can take advantage of the full capabilities of your Neo Cortex. It means
that you are able to solve problems, to study, to learn, to create knowledge Generally speaking,
you can do properly everything you want or need, the only limitations being your capabilities and
your knowledge. If you are able and know how to build a house, you can do it. Any task needing
intelligence is performed by the Neo Cortex. And as you may have noticed, you love that.
Indeed, this how you fulfill the needs of this part of the brain, by using its thinking power. It
will generate positive feelings and emotions because it is linked to our Limbic System. For example, if
you achieved something very important in your life, you feel good about yourself, reach a social
status, and meet people and so on. This shows something very important in our evolution: every
parts of our brain are working together and need to work together. Emotions are mixed with
intelligence and physiological needs. The body intelligence is however limited in our thinking this is
why we will identify different types of intelligence mixing capabilities of our Limbic System and Neo

III. Part I Our Brain | | Defining needs and fulfilling them 24


The Reptilian Brain contains fear, anger and territoriality.
The Neo Cortex contains logic, abstract thinking.

The people considered as unwise are often violent, fear the unknown, are close minded and give a
lot of importance to material possessions.
The people considered as wise use their rational thinking to stay calm, to think, to find peace and
open their mind. They also give little importance to possessions.

According to evolution we should use more our most advanced functions, thus the Neo Cortex.
Therefore, calm, open minded and rational people can be considered as more evolved.


III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 25

C. Different types of intelligence
Usually, we define 2 types of intelligence: Rational Intelligence (logic combined with
creativity) and Emotional Intelligence (logic combined with emotions). These two types of
intelligence are measureable in terms of IQ (Intellectual Quotient) and EQ (Emotional Quotient).
IQ concerns everything linked to problem solving and rational thinking.
EQ concerns everything linked to social skills and creativity.
This is however far more complicated than that because in each of these categories we have
many types of competences and skills. This is why Howard Gardener presented his Multiple
Intelligences Theory in 1983
, in which he assumed that we have 8 types of intelligence. It has
gained wide acceptance due to the fact that it is more advanced and represent more the capabilities
of our brain. Indeed, I said previously that the Triune Brain Model was a simplified version of our
brain. The fact is that this theory works but in these different areas we have many sub-areas and
each one is linked to a certain type of capability (e.g.: motivity, vision, language and so on). It is not
the simple combination of 3 cortexes but the combination of the numerous capabilities contained in
these cortexes which makes us so complex and evolved compared to simple animal behaviors. In
1999, he added a new type of intelligence: Existential. So there are 9 types of intelligence in this
Logical / mathematical
Bodily / kinesthetic
Now we will take a closer look at each of these types of intelligence. The purpose of this
analysis is to have in mind different categories of intelligence in order to analyze ourselves and
others in a different way. It will help us identifying strengths and weakness of individual. This will
make it easier for us to communicate and work with people if we build a better view of their
intellectual profile. I really like this vision of our intelligences because it shows that there are many

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_multiple_intelligences#The_multiple_intelligences, accessed on 08-

III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 26

kinds of intelligence while IQ is often considered as the most important one (it is even considered as
the only factor of intelligence by many persons).
Last important fact before starting: every type of intelligence can be worked on at any point
of the life. Areas used improve, other degrade. This means that we are not born with all these
abilities but have to train them. Indeed, we have a brain which is genetically conditioned to be better
at certain types of intelligence so we can naturally excel in it. Nevertheless, it does not mean that we
cant improve the other types of intelligence and you can do it our whole life long.




III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 27

a. Spatial
Also called Visual/Spatial intelligence, this one gives us the ability to create mental images in
our own mind and manipulate them. This way, we can solve problems with images we have in our
mind. Some people are able to navigate precisely or to find their way in a forest by using this type of
intelligence. They build a mental image of the places they visit. Geographers, artists, fashion
designers, architects, industrial designers, aircraft pilots, drivers (especially taxi drivers),
photographers, cameramen, surgeons, dentists, radiologists are people with a highly developed
Spatial Intelligence.
People with a good Spatial Intelligence can picture ideas in their mind; enjoy creating art,
performing art, working with maps and charts, find music video stimulating and like different kinds of
Blind people also develop Spatial Intelligence, thus it does not depend on sight only.
b. Linguistic
This is the ability to remember information with words and to use language for expressing
complex ideas. In other words, it is the mastery of language for both oral and written language. This
is the most common type of intelligence and usually the most developed type for poets, translators
and interpreters.
People with a high Linguistic Intelligence can easily use complex sentences and words
without being confused. They read, write, tell stories and remember words and even dates better
than most people. They also tend to learn better by reading, taking notes and discussing and
debating about what they have learned. They also enjoy word games (like Scrabble), making jokes
that play on words and to explain to others using words.
This ability for memorizing words, understanding and manipulating syntax and structure also
help them to learn foreign languages very easily. Women are usually better than men in this area,
especially when it comes to know several languages.
c. Logical / Mathematical
This is the ability to mentally process logical problems and equations. It is also the ability to
build complex abstract thoughts. This is a pre-requisite for many kind of job and is not linked to a few
ones in particular. You need it in sciences as well as in business or construction. This is because it is
more than a pure mathematical intelligence; it is strongly linked to the reasoning capabilities.

III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 28

People with a good Logical / Mathematical intelligence can calculate, measure, to make
logical decisions and solve mathematical and scientific problems with ease. Usually, they analyze the
causes and consequences of a phenomenon or an action and then are able to explain why it
happened this way. They also tend to categorize and order objects, they like figures, analyzing and
logical reasoning. Interestingly, with this intelligence we can find solutions can be found before
demonstrating them. This is the case because we can build abstract thoughts and solving the
problem in our mind. If you have a good Logical / Mathematical intelligence you will like strategy
games, puzzles, working with computer spreadsheets or databases and to work step by step. You will
also find mental arithmetic easy and get frustrated with disorganized people.
This type of intelligence is the one we generally refer as IQ (Intellectual Quotient) and is often
considered as the main factor for determining intelligence. This is why I wanted to talk about the
Theory of Multiple Intelligences. As you can see, this problem-solving capability is one of the most
needed in our world but we can let it be the main factor of intelligence. Indeed, if you can solve any
problem you face but are very bad at communicating with people and expressing yourself then how
can you share your findings? And what if you are a great artist capable of painting, composing music,
writing but you are very bad at problem solving? How do you have to be considered?
In the business world you may as well have to work with people not especially good at
problem solving but with other great abilities. Then you will have to find a way to take advantage of
these capabilities to do specific tasks.
d. Bodily / Kinesthetic
This is the mental ability to use our body for expressing and idea, a feeling or to practice
physical activities. This one is very interesting because it links the body to the mental capabilities
which are considered to be unrelated in popular belief. This is a very important ability for dancers,
athletes, surgeons, pilots, musicians, actors, police officers, soldiers, builders and craftsmen.
It is essential in sport. Football, Basketball, Hockey players are better if they can make
intelligent pass, estimate with precision where they will shoot, make good feints and so on.
Therefore you need more than a good body and good muscles for being good at sport. You need
strong mental abilities to have a reactive body, to solve physical problems by moving adequately.
This includes a good sense of timing, of the objective of the physical action and good reflexes. All of
this can be trained and learned. Virtual training can help but wont give the same results as real
training because the body and mind have to be in a real situation. Nevertheless, virtual training may
give very good results in the future if the technologies used are good enough for making the brain
believe that he is facing a real situation.

III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 29

People with a good Bodily / Kinesthetic intelligence will learn better by using their body in
the learning experience. They prefer to use their body than language for learning. This is different
from Linguistic Intelligence because they use their body to learn instead of words but can actually
use their body to remember words. They also have a good muscle memory; the ability to learn a
movement to perfection until being able to perform it perfectly and automatically.
They are good at sports and dance (especially outdoor), may enjoy acting or performing.
They are also usually good at building and making things with their own hands or tools. They are
very good at expressing their emotions with their body. They learn better by doing and find it difficult
to sit still.
e. Musical
This is the ability to think with rhythms and melodies, to recognize and compose musical
patterns, tones and rhythms and to interpret them. Indeed, good auditory functions are necessary
for developing a good intelligence of tones and pitches but not for rhythm which can be developed
with the sense of touch. This is a vital intelligence for singers, instrumentalists, DJs, composers, song
writers and all creative jobs linked to music.
People with a good musical intelligence are able to sing, play instruments, compose music
and have a good pitch. This intelligence can be combined with Linguistic Intelligence for a better
learning by reading and writing. This is especially needed for composing and remembering lyrics but
also for the rhythms they can also be written down. Linguistic Intelligence is thus very helpful for
people who want to use Musical Intelligence in their work. Bodily / Kinesthetic Intelligence is also
combined with the Musical one for dancers.
People with a good Musical Intelligence will find it easy to move or clap in rhythm, to
remember lyrics and pick up on patterns. They enjoy playing instrument, musicals, listening to many
different types of music and focusing on noises and sounds.
This one is also very interesting because we usually dont consider this can of aptitude as
something being intelligent (usually only IQ is considered as intelligence). However, it is clear that
many persons have a poor Musical Intelligence and couldnt play music.
f. Interpersonal
This one is the ability of interacting and reacting with other individuals in a proper and
adapted way. In other words, it is a social intelligence. It is linked to empathy, cooperation, tolerance
and globally every interaction with others. Salespeople, politicians, managers, teachers and social
workers need it.

III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 30

People with a high Interpersonal Intelligence can perceive differences and nuances in others
moods, feelings, temperaments and motivations. They can identify and understand these things even
if the other doesnt say anything. They also are better at solving issues linked to relationships with
others. They are better at working as a part of a group, communicate effectively and empathize with
others. They try to build close relationship and may lead people around them or at least follow them.
They prefer working and learning with others than alone by discussing and debating. They are
considered to have more charisma than others and are usually extraverted.
Once again, we consider a type of intelligence which is one of the most important in our
society and different than IQ. A good Interpersonal Intelligence is necessary for working with other
people and for networking. Therefore, if we want to be efficient in our society we need it.
g. Intrapersonal
This is the ability to understand our own feelings and motivations. It refers to introspection
and self-reflection. It is closely linked to the Interpersonal Intelligence. These two intelligences are
called the Personal Intelligences. It fits mostly philosophers, psychologists, writers and theologians.
People with a high Intrapersonal Intelligence are able to build in their mind an accurate
representation of themselves and to use it efficiently in their lives. They are able to analyze and
understand their own emotions, needs and wishes. They are looking for a deep understanding of
themselves, their strengths and weaknesses, their ways of acting and expressing emotions. They are
introvert and prefer working alone than in groups because they like to follow their own intuition but
they can also work in group if they have a good Interpersonal Intelligence. They give all what they
can for doing something if they truly believe in what they are doing. Having an emotional link with
the subject they deal with is important to them.
The Personal Intelligences can be very powerful when both are high because they are
completing each other. Someone with a high Interpersonal but low Intrapersonal intelligence may
be considered as childish because this person does not try to improve itself. The contrary, low
Interpersonal but high Intrapersonal Intelligence may let people think that the person is egocentric.
h. Naturalistic
It is the ability to learn from nature and use this knowledge. It is linked to the experience of
an individual with the natural world. This is a trait of character for naturalist, farmers, gardeners,
hunters, fishers, botanists, zoologists, cooks and ecologists.
People with a high Naturalistic Intelligence are able to classify, identify and utilize its
knowledge of the natural environment, the animals, the plants and minerals. They can recognize

III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 31

animals footprints and know which animals and plants they can eat or they should avoid. They can
survive in natural environments and like camping or hiking. They feel that their environment is an
important part of their life, including animals. They help to recycle materials and believe that they
should protect their environment, often by supporting ecological causes. They feel better when they
are close to the nature.
This kind of intelligence seems almost natural for some people and is closely linked to the
Reptilian Brain functions and our deepest instincts. People naturally feel relaxed when they are close
to the nature. You can observe that because in big cities people are more stressed and they relax by
leaving it or going in a park.
i. Existential
This is the ability for someone to question the meaning of things and their origins. This is
especially used for discussing the meaning of life in philosophy and religion. It is also the ability to
think about our own origins and destiny. It is also called Spiritual intelligence Howard Gardner and
called it Existential instead because Spiritual refers to irrational beliefs like religious beliefs. Our
Existence has to be discussed and we have to find what to do with it. This is why the idea of an
Existential Intelligence is necessary because not everyone can ask such deep philosophical questions.
People with this ability can think deeply about the meaning of their life and can build abstract
thought beyond cosmic limits (think about the infinite space and universe but also the infinitely small
things). This means that you can build complex thoughts without data and concrete information. The
problem is that this is philosophy and the danger is to build false answers. Many persons with a
strong Existential Intelligence build false answers because they dont want to admit that they dont
have and cant have the true answer. They fear what they dont know which is a natural response to
their basic instincts. This is why we talk about Existential intelligence (thinking about what we exist)
than Spiritual intelligence (creating reason for existing). I dont hold anything about religion and
spirituality. Both can be positive but are often misused and are based on irrational thinking and fear
of the unknown.


III. Part I Our Brain | Different types of intelligence | Defining needs and fulfilling them 32


Grey or White?
The brain of men and women are indeed different. One of these differences is the ratios of
grey matter and white matter. These are the two types of tissue composing our brains. It appears
that men think more with grey matter while women think more with white matter. Men have about
6.5 times more grey matter than women, and women 10 times more white matter than men.
Grey matter is for processing information while white matter is for connecting the different
parts of our brain. This is why men are usually better at focusing their intelligence on one task and
women are better for multi-tasking. This explains why men are better at mathematics (focus) and
women better at languages (gathering information from different locations). These differences can
also be explained because the structure of the brain itself is different. Actually, we have a very
different repartition of our brain cells.

Left or Right?
Another difference is that men tend to think more with their left brain and women with their
right brain. This means that men gather many pieces of individual information to form the whole
picture while women process everything at the same time to form the whole picture.
Generally speaking, men are more oriented toward future goals and women are better at
remembering past events. This could be explained by the fact that the right side of the brained is
more focused on the present and the future while the left side is focused on the present and the
past. Indeed, this is a simplified representation of the reality but it is mostly true.

Who is the best?
Men and women have indeed a very different brain and a very different way to use it.
However, researchers stressed the fact that there is no difference between intellectual
performances. This is very interesting because men and women score equally at IQ tests on broad
measures even if their brains are really different.

Remember that what is important is to be aware of these differences in order to understand
better each other, not to determine who the best is. These research are very useful to understand
each time better why we are so different and who we could manage these differences.

Bjorn Carey (2005), Gender do really think differently, MSNBC.COM,
differently/, accessed on 08-27-2011

IV. Part II Motivation | Introduction to the concept | What is motivation? 33

IV. Part II Motivation
A. Introduction to the concept
1. What is motivation?
This word, Motivation has been heard so many times over the last decades, and even more
the last years. In the business world, at school, in sports: you hear it all the time. The definition of
motivation and how to achieve it is however confusing. This is mostly because many people from
many different areas (philosophers, historians, psychoanalysts, managers, sociologists, scientists and
so on) tried to define it and explain it. As a result, there are many interpretation of this world in
popular beliefs which does not represent the reality and therefore make it difficult to reach high
levels of motivation.
From the perspective of a company, there is also a different view. Most companies claim to
be willing to motivate their employees but they actually want performance. When employees talk
about motivation they mostly refer to satisfaction. Anyway their objectives are compatible because
in order to be efficient employees have to be motivated. Nevertheless, motivation itself is not
sufficient for reaching efficient, it is mandatory. Indeed, an employee can be motivated and
inefficient while it is very unlikely that an efficient employee isnt motivated. Now we need to define
more clearly what motivation is.
Motivation is the relation a person has with the relationship with itself and the world. It
means that we all have a vision of ourselves and who we are relatively to the world: other people,
the society, situations, projects, career and so on. This is why motivation is so hard to define:
motivation is different for everyone. One thing is sure: motivation means which generate
movements according to its etymology
and what makes people move are their needs.
Actually, motivation is defined by ones needs (Physiological, Emotional and Intellectual).
More precisely, it is defined by the idea that one will satisfy these needs. Given that these needs are
different from one person to another, there is no recipe for motivation but many recipes
corresponding to many profiles. This is why we will try here to have a better understanding of it and
wont give some kind of magic formula because there isnt one.
In addition to the problem linked to the definition of the term itself, there is confusion with
other 2 others terms: simulation and satisfaction.

Nicole Haubert, Diriger et Motiver, Comprendre le Mcanisme de la Motivation, page 16, accessed on 08-04-

IV. Part II Motivation | Introduction to the concept | What is motivation? 34

Stimulation refers to an external stimulus which makes us act according to it. Indeed when
we are stimulated we generate an automated answer to the stimulus. This is the main difference
with motivation: motivation results of internal factors while stimulation results from external factors.
Thus stimulation is often confused with motivation because there is a movement generated.
Nevertheless it is very different; it is like a basic form of motivation. If you want to get real
motivation from people you have to find ways to generate it automatically. A good example of
stimulation for an employee could be a threat of being fired which generates fear and thus generates
an automated answer from the most basic instincts. This is very important to consider the difference
between stimulation and motivation because some companies reach high levels of performance by
using stimulus while people think that it is because of high levels of motivation. But the
performance is there some people would tell. Problem is that a stimulus has to be repeated forever
while motivation is internal. In other words, stimulation is an external energy for performance while
motivation is an internal energy so once an employee is motivated then he doesnt need to be
Satisfaction is also very often confused with motivation. Satisfaction refers to a feeling that
an employee has when he works. It is therefore and indicator of motivation and not a reason for
motivation. Employees are satisfied in their work when there are factors generating satisfaction.
These factors are often also linked to motivation and this is why people confuse these two terms.
Anyway these are two distinct things: satisfaction is clearly an indicator while motivation is more of
a process. To sum up we can say that we can be satisfied even without being motivated while it is
very unlikely to be motivated without feeling satisfied. This why satisfaction can be used as an
indicator for motivation even though it is not sufficient for proving that employees are motivated.


IV. Part II Motivation | Introduction to the concept | How to motivate and lead a team? 35

2. How to motivate and lead a team?
As previously said, we wont define a magic formula for motivating people. The reason is
the complexity of the process of motivation. Indeed, many elements are related to this process:
ourselves, underlings (subalterns we are supposed to motivate), the team (in which underlings are
working), the organization (considering its structure and its culture) and any other factor influencing
people. Considering that each of these elements is different in each case, it is impossible to give one
simple answer to motivation. Instead, we will take a look at the mechanisms that we need to
understand in order to motivate people.
For this purpose, we will analyze the mechanism of motivation by trying to:
Understand better the key elements for us to be motivated. This means going
deeper in what is contained in motivation: our different kind of needs.
Define more clearly how someone motivated is behaving until he reaches
performance and eventually satisfaction. Here we will make a behavioral study and a
deeper analysis of the motivation factors.


IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | How to motivate and lead a

B. From basic needs to great desires
The mechanism of motivation is very complex and subtle. We will here talk about the basics
of the mechanism of motivation. As we previously said, the main elements to study for
understanding it are:
1) Ourselves: as individuals, we have our own personality, our own needs, our
objectives and a hierarchical rank.
2) Underlings: our subalterns also have their own personality, their needs, their
objectives and their own hierarchical rank. Also, they have an apprehension about
who we and other people are.
3) The team: underlings are usually part of teams. These teams may have different way
of functioning depending on which kind of people are composing them. Each
member of the team having its own personality, needs, objectives and rank.
4) The organization: all these human being are working together in an organization.
This organization has its own culture, values, structure, rules and processes. This
defines the context in which employees are going to work so two identic teams
(exact same people) working in two different organization may work very differently.
The 3 first elements are related to individuals and their functioning, whether they are alone
or interacting together. Psychological factors will therefore be vital for understanding their behavior.
The last element, the organization, is more about social and legal rules. These rules will
define a basis on which individuals have to work in order to collaborate. It is therefore a key element
to study for motivating employees.
Now we will define the different kinds of needs linked to motivation and then the factors
influencing the motivational state of employees.


IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Different kinds of needs 37

1. Different kinds of needs
As we stated in Part I, our brain and its structure give us capabilities but we have to fulfill its
needs in order to get full advantage of it. Our brain is complex and so is the mechanism of motivation
because all our needs are linked to it. Actually, a motivated human being is just trying to fulfill its
needs. Therefore, to motivate someone you have to give him the opportunity to fulfill its needs.
Many author tried to define a specific scheme for categorizing these needs. Amongst them,
I choose to retain Maslow and C. Delafosse. As mentioned in Part I, to release the power of the Neo
Cortex, you need to answer to the most basic needs first. Maslow and Delafosse understand it very
well and define different categories of needs all linked to the motivational state of human beings. I
will first present Maslows Hierarchy of Needs and then continue with Delafosses.
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

As you can see, the difference with theories linked to the Triune Brain Model is that you have
more than 3 categories of needs. The category themselves and their order have been discussed many
times by many authors but they dont consider the function of our brain as well as Maslows.


IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Different kinds of needs 38

When observing more closely this pyramid you will note that they are linked to the 3
categories of needs we talked about earlier:
1) Physiological needs: needs of our body.
2) Safety needs: it is a mix between physiological needs and emotional needs.
3) Love/Belonging needs: correspond to Emotional Needs
4) Esteem needs: a mix between Emotional and Intellectual needs.
5) Self-Actualization needs
: linked to Intellectual Needs and capabilities.
You may think that I ranked them in a different way but actually it is the same one. Indeed,
the first needs to satisfy are at the bottom of the pyramid. Each time you want to go to the next
category, you have to fulfill the needs of the previous categories. If you dont, it gets very difficult
and even impossible to get to the top of the pyramid. Keep in mind that depending on the individuals
themselves and on the society they live in (collectivist or individualist), the individuals will weight
these needs differently. Anyway, this pyramid is working in most cases.
The first most important thing to understand about this model is that at some point there
will be a need in the pyramid which will be unsatisfied. When this happen, then the whole brain start
malfunctioning and you have to satisfy this need. Thus, an employee cant be motivated until he has
the opportunity to satisfy these needs. He will be focused on satisfying the currently unsatisfied
The second one is that satisfied needs do no motivate a person because they dont think
about them. Therefore, an employee wont be motivated by something he already has but by the
idea of getting something else.
The third one is that the first needs to satisfy are the most basic ones according to the
process of evolution and the Triune Brain Model. Actually, it shows that if our most basic instincts
feel unsafe or if we are emotionally unstable we cant think properly. Thus an employee wont be
able to reach its maximum productivity unless its other needs are satisfied.

Self-Actualization: the tendency to actualize itself as fully as possible is the basic drive...the drive of self-
actualization. Term introduced by Kurt Goldstein, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-actualization, accessed on

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Different kinds of needs 39

In conclusion, we can build 3 essential statements concerning motivation from this vision:
1) Human behaviors are led by their needs and the most intense need of the moment
will guide the behavior of the person in the present situation. Independently of the
order of apparition of these different kinds of needs, there will be a period during
which one of them will be more important than others. During this period the
increased need will drive the persons actions. As an example of the business
world, someone willing to get promoted not for money (Safety Needs: Resources)
but for because he wants his/her work to be recognized (Esteem: Self-esteem) will be
almost insensitive to any financial incentive. It is therefore the need of the present
situation which motivates someone.
2) Once a need has been satisfied, it does not motivate the person anymore. Indeed, it
is always the perspective of satisfying new needs which motivates. Thus, managers
have to provide a dynamic way of motivating. They have to constantly listen to their
employees and find what they want now for motivating them now. Also, managers
have to always consider that the needs of each individual are different which means
that something may motivate very strongly Employee A while not at all Employee
3) When you go from the bottom of the top of the pyramid, you realize that you go
from owning to being. Indeed, the bottom needs are related to Physiological
and Material needs (eating, sleeping, possessing resources, housing ). Then you
have Emotional and Social Needs (friendship, family, self-esteem ). Finally you have
more Intellectual Needs which are also linked to Social Needs (problem solving,
creating, achievement ). This confirms what we have seen before: we have
capabilities and needs that linked together create new capabilities but also generate
new needs. It is the result of the process of evolution.
Now I will present another view from Delafosse which is similar to this one.

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Different kinds of needs 40

Delafosses Hierarchy of Needs

Delafosse also made a representation of this pyramid but in another way. It is somehow
simplified and emphasizes the fact that you go from owning to being. I like it because the process of
evolution shows that this is the main difference between us and animals. We are able to build
abstract thoughts and to create needs more important than the basic ones. Living creatures evolved
during thousands of years by first getting a basic brain (Reptilian, meaning evolution through
improvement of the body), then a more evolved brain (Limbic, meaning evolution through learning
and socializing) and then the most evolved brain (Neo Cortex, meaning evolution through thinking).
Indeed, this is how human keep evolving, through their intelligence.
It means that all the needs related to Being are going to keep evolving while the most basic
needs are very unlikely to do so. However these needs still have to be satisfied to get motivation
from people. The emotional and intellectual needs as well.
This is an interesting point which becomes now to get in the corporate world. Indeed, a few
decades ago most companies where considering employees in another way. Consider for example
Taylor Fords theories: each person was assigned a specific task and had to repeat it. In this model,
only the functionality of the employee is considered, we ask the person to perform a simple task
again and again. It was very basic and not considering any emotion, any intelligence. This is why it led
Hunger Thirst
Physical Needs
Social Needs
Self-Actualization Needs
Personal or Collective

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Different kinds of needs 41

to productivity for a while but then something lacked for generating true motivation. Indeed,
understanding that we have needs in not enough to motivate employees. This is what we will talk
about now: motivation factors.



IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 42

2. Motivation factors
For this part, I based my work on the motivation-hygiene theory developed by Frederick
. According to Herzberg, employees are trying to do 2 things when they are at work:
They try to avoid issues linked to their working environment
They try to accomplish something in their work, to reach self-actualization
Herzberg led studies in which he asked employees from different companies the elements
which were causing great satisfaction and the ones causing great dissatisfaction. He observed that
the elements generating satisfaction were poorly related to the elements generating dissatisfaction.
He realized that there were 2 groups of motivation factors.
1) Factors generating dissatisfaction (mostly linked to the working environment)
The company policy and the management (e.g.: the way the work is organized, the
way they communicate with employees, the way the monitor employees and so on)
The relationship with the supervisors
The income
The relationship with peers (co-workers and underlings)
The working conditions

2) Factors generating satisfaction (mostly linked to the tasks)
The feeling of self-actualization through the work
The recognition of their work by the supervisors and the company
The work itself (is it interesting or not?)
The opportunity to have responsibilities
The opportunity to get promoted (advancement and growth)

Herzberg called the first category Hygiene factors and the second one Motivators. It
seems very obvious when stated like this, but there is a trick. Actually, the Hygiene factors, mostly
related to the environment, are a condition for motivation but are not sufficient. If these factors are
working properly they just prevent employees from being dissatisfied. The issue is that these factors
need to be satisfied again and again, they get fulfilled and then come back to zero and need to be
satisfied gain.

N.A., Herzbergs Motivation-Hygiene Theroy (two factor theory),
http://www.netmba.com/mgmt/ob/motivation/herzberg/, accessed on 8-10-2011

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 43

In other words, they dont generate satisfaction but only an absence of dissatisfaction.
When these factors work properly, employees are just not dissatisfied anymore, but not satisfied at
all! And the worst part is that if these factors are not managed properly (very strict monitoring, mad
management, bad supervisors), the dissatisfaction can quickly take place. This means less motivation,
less performance and a focus on claims of all kinds.
The second group, the Motivators, is linked to self-actualization and to the
creation/production of something useful. They are related to the meaning and the objectives of the
tasks, of the activities. This is why they are called Motivators, because they make people move
forward. The 2 keys elements here are to give employees the ability to create something and to
recognize the quality of their creation. It is a great source of motivation and satisfaction.
As you may have noticed, the Hygiene factors correspond to the bottom of Maslows
pyramid while the Motivators are at the top. It means that our most basic needs cant generate
satisfaction and motivation. There is logic in this because they are linked to the most basic area of
our brain which does not contain emotions and intelligence. The Motivators however are linked to
emotions and intelligence, to the most advanced functions of our brain.


IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 44

As you can see on this figure
, the factors are dominant but there are still a small percentage
of people which are not 100% working and thinking this way. This is why Herzberg has been criticized
on his work. Nevertheless, it proves that company policies based exclusively on improving working
condition are very limited and cant lead to motivation of employees (no focus on relationships, on
the meaning of the tasks given, on the recognition). Many companies only focused on working
conditions and many continue to do it today. They do their best for improving Hygiene factors and
dont understand why they cant get employees to be motivated. The only result companies can get
is that employees wont be disturbed in their motivation by a malfunctioning organization, a bad
organization of their working place or emotional problems.

Translated from: Nicole Haubert, Diriger et motiver, Page 23, accessed on 8-10-2011

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 45

From Herzberg work and the observation we made, we can build 3 essential statements:
1) Employees at work can go through 3 different states of satisfaction: dissatisfied, not
dissatisfied and satisfied. It is vital to highlight the not dissatisfied state because it
shows us the limits of acting on the Hygiene factors. A good management of the
working environment is necessary to motivation but not enough. The opposite of
dissatisfaction is not dissatisfied and not satisfied. Herzberg used a funny
comparison in order to represent this: If we bash your head with a hammer, it hurts.
If we stop bashing, are you feeling good? No, it just stops hurting

Nicole Haubert, Diriger et motiver, Page 25, accessed on 8-10-2011



dissatisfied and
satisfied and
Employees not
dissatisfied and

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 46

2) Stimulating people (using an external factor to make them move) is a vicious circle.
When you stop stimulating the employees, they stop moving because they need an
external stimulus. Therefore, it will be the person stimulating the employee who will
be motivated to make him work, not the employee himself. The issue is that
stimulation is still widely used by most company while they could motivate people.
Nevertheless, it does not mean that stimulation should be abandoned, not at all. For
some specific tasks in which you cant find any Motivator, any creation or
recognition, the only way to make the employee work is to stimulate him. In such
case, the only option is to maintain a good level of Absence of Dissatisfaction by
acting on Hygiene Factors. For example, if you need to make your cleaning
employees to work efficiently you cant really find a way to tell them how great is
their accomplishment. You can however take off any element making them
dissatisfied: giving a better job title, specific uniform, financial incentives and so on.
This way, they will get the work done the best way even if not really motivated.

3) Stimulation is equal to providing energy to the employee while motivation is
enabling the employee to generate its own energy. This is a crucial statement
because many companies still try to act on employees to motivate them.
The best ways to enable employees to get motivated are to:
o Raise the interests of the tasks
a. More Diversity (change tasks)
b. More Independence (less orders)
c. More Responsibilities (less monitoring)
d. More Research for information (let the person find its way)
e. More Feed-Back (about the execution of the task and role played in
the company)
o Give them the opportunity to create something by their own
o Update and renew the tasks assigned.
o Give them more control over their job
o Let them choose the way they reach objectives
Changing deeply the organization of the work is not easy. Most of the time it will
disrupt the section of the company which his modified at the beginning. However,
the productivity will reach higher levels once the employees get used to the new
way. It is what happens when you hire someone: it takes some time to be

IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 47

4) There is a logic linked to the Triune Brain Model. Indeed, the motivation is linked to
needs, thus to our brain. If we link the Triune Brain Model to the Maslows pyramid
and the Motivation Factors then we understand that to go from the bottom to the
top, to dissatisfaction to satisfaction, we need to unlock every part of the brain in this
order: Reptilian Brain, Limbic System and Neo Cortex.
Remember that the Reptilian Brain only manages our most basic functions linked
mostly to physiological needs. There is also an analogy with the environment. Now
we realize that Hygiene Factors cant create satisfaction but only and absence of
dissatisfaction. The logic is that there is no emotion in this part of the brain and
therefore there cant be any production of positive emotion there. Therefore, all
needs of the Reptilian Brain need to be satisfied in order to satisfy our body only. In
other words, Hygiene factors are necessary to fulfill the needs of our body which
makes it possible then to unlock our Limbic System. If these needs are let
unsatisfied the body wont work properly and so will the rest of our capabilities.
However, unlocking the Limbic System wont lead to motivation. It is a mandatory
condition for motivation because it leads to absence of dissatisfaction. Now we
reach the part where there are emotions, linked mostly to relationships with others,
to personal life and so on. To unlock the Neo Cortex you must now fulfill the needs of
the Limbic System which means to make the emotions function properly. In other
words, you have to find a way to improve the relationships of your employees. Then
there is almost no chance that the Limbic System will hijack the Neo Cortex. Even
better, it will generate a positive feeling in the mind of the person, some kind of
satisfaction. Thus, the Neo Cortex will be unlocked and the employee will be able to
produce a great work.
This is the final step to satisfaction. We saw that in Motivators we have things like
raising the interest of the tasks, give more control, ability to create and so on. This is
how you fulfill the needs of the Neo Cortex: you enable him to use its full potential.
Actually, many people feel unhappy in their job because they are not intellectually
solicited. By giving the opportunity to the employees to use their intellect, you give
them the opportunity to reach self-actualization. You give them motivation.


IV. Part II Motivation | From basic needs to great desires | Motivation factors 48

As we can see, the mechanism of motivation is very complex considering that we just dealt
with the basics. It has to be considered as a whole. There is not magic formula, no easy answer and
no way to quickly get instant maximum motivation. Every aspect of every of our needs have to be
considered in order to get the best results. Also, the Real Motivation comes from the inside and not
from external factors. External factors can only Stimulate.
Our most basic needs have to be satisfied for accessing the motivation but it is not sufficient.
It is mandatory for assessing other needs. The Real Motivation comes from the opportunity of self-
actualization (getting power, accomplishing something ) and it has to be supported by emotional
stability which is mostly obtained through good relationships with other people.
It is not an easy task for a manager to find how to motivate people because he doesnt have
access to all the necessary information. He lacks information about the true motives of each
employee. Each employee has similar basic needs but may have very different emotional and
intellectual needs. The manager has to find out a solution for revealing them and fulfill them. This is
why managers have to be able to analyze the situations they are facing and behave in the correct
We will stop talking for now of the internal energy we are looking for. We will explain a few
principles and give practical solutions for a manager to handle this complex mechanism.


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Reinforcement 49

C. The Mechanism of Motivation
We will now analyze the mechanism of motivation by dividing the different parts composing
it. We will try to have an objective point of view and to find the different necessary conditions for
obtaining will and performance from the employees.
The mechanism will be divided in 3 parts:
Equity theory
Expectancy theory
1. Reinforcement
The Reinforcement has been highlighted by Burrhus Frederic Skinner, an American
psychologist. It has been widely tested and proved to work. I shall not be considered as the only way
to achieve its objectives.
The Reinforcement is based on the reactions of the Limbic System. Remember that the
Limbic System wants to avoid pain and repeat pleasure. Thus if you inflict pain or give pleasure and
link it to a specific event, then the person will try to avoid or to repeat this event. Thus, when dealing
with employees you just have to generate bad or good emotions depending on their behavior or on
their performance.
This part of the Mechanism of Motivation is linked to stimulation. Its called the principle of
Operant Conditioning: Stimulus Answer Consequence. The stimulus is targeted at the
environment, the Hygiene Factors, and will be repeated or no depending on the behavior of the
employees. The objective is to increase/decrease the rate or probability of a behavior. The statement
is that a reinforced behavior will be more likely to be repeated while a behavior which is not
reinforced is very unlikely to be repeated.
The Response of the Employees can be evaluated according to different criteria: frequency,
duration, accuracy, persistence of the response and so on. It is very important that the Stimulus
occurs right when the behavior happens or the employee wont understand. Moreover, the Stimulus
has to be explained so the employees understand which behavior has to be repeated or avoided.


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Reinforcement 50

The 4 types of reinforcement

Type of Reinforcement and
its effect
Stimulus Response of the
Award for the
Positive Reinforcement
Increase the probability
that the behavior occurs
The organization give
rewards for High
Employees are giving
their best
Positive Feed-
Positive Punishment
Decrease the probability
that the behavior occurs
You say to employees
that they are supposed to
take a one hour break
Some employees takes
more than one hour
Negative Reinforcement
The behavior is avoided
because consequences for it
are known
Employees taking more
than an hour of break get
Employees take only
one hour breaks
No reprimand
Negative Punishment
Stop a behavior which is not
desired anymore by taking
off the positive reinforcing
Bonus to the
Salespeople bases on
Salespeople do
whatever it takes to get
new clients (including
forcing the sale)
No more bonuses will
be awarded for new
Salespeople stop their
efforts but also the
wrong behaviors
No bonus

These are only example and you can find multiple ways to apply these types of reinforcing.
The most used one is the Positive Reinforcing because it gets the best results and is globally better
than the Punishments. The reason is that Positive Reinforcement gives results lasting longer and it
also generates better behaviors. The Punishments have short term effects and a negative impact on
the mood of employees. It is linked to what we said before about Hygiene Factors: if the employees
get punished by the supervisor according to company policy, then the employees will have a bad
relationship with both of them, thus generating dissatisfaction.
It has been observed that the positive recognition through positive awards is better because
it will improve globally the behaviors of the employees. It teaches to employees what is good and
gives more value to their work and gives them a better image of themselves. As an example, if an
employee is punished because he didnt took care of a client properly. We dont give any advice for
him on what he should have done which mean we dont give him any opportunity for learning. Even
worse, he may associate the punishment to the contact with the client and not to the wrong

Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reinforcement#Types_of_reinforcement, accessed on 08-16-2011

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Reinforcement 51

behavior. Therefore he may try to avoid clients in order to avoid being punished. Thus would be
better to find another way to stop this bad behavior because punishment may only make it worse.
On another hand, the Positive Reinforcement has a long lasting positive effect. If you say to
one of your employees that some clients enjoyed a lot the way he took care of them, then he get a
strong positive feeling and do his best to make it occur again. This is because when people feel that
they are winners they will have more energy and try to do more while losers will lose their
motivation because they have a negative vision of themselves. People are always in a need for
improving the way they perceive themselves and its widely impacted by the way others perceive
Fifteen years from now, a French transportation company had used a system based almost
exclusively on Punishment. Each employee had an invisible counter with a total of 100 points. Each
time the employee committed an infraction to the rules some points were withdrawn from the total.
When it reached 0 then the employee was suspended for one day. This system led to a global
demotivation of employees because they were only told when things were bad, not when they did
something good. Since then, this system was abolished but no system of Positive Reinforcement took
place instead. Thus, they only took of the demotivation.
The best companies of the world have shown that it was possible to create a system
constantly generating positive attitudes because they treat their employees as winners. This is very
interesting because it happened that big companies with employees as smart and as capable had
different results because of their reward system. Companies treating employees as winners had
better results than companies treating people as losers. Their employees achieved more often
their objectives.


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Reinforcement 52

The IMB example:

IMB set its objectives in order that 70% to 80% of the employees reach them while another
company (a competitor) does it in order that only 40% of employees reach the objectives. The result
is that in the second case 60% of the employees think they are losers. They take it badly and it
generates bad behaviors and impedes the productivity even more. Employees considering them as
losers will act as losers.
This issue is strongly present in European countries, especially in France. It starts far before
going to work because it is already there at school. Indeed, we are used to hear something when our
work is bad but not when its good. We receive very little positive feed-back but get immediate
negative feed-back when its due. I have a personal example given by my mother because I couldnt
remember it:
At the end of my 1
year of primary school (I was 7 because Im born in April) the teacher
told to my mother Your son could have better result if he wasnt chatting so much with others. And
you know what? I was the first of the class with about 18/20 overall grade. As a child I was always
having excellent grades and I was always in the top of the class but I never felt it, for me it was
normal. I even felt bad sometimes because I thought that it wasnt enough. Problem is that at
some point I stopped caring about school. I still had acceptable grades because Im smart but I could
have achieved far more. When I worked in French companies, I felt the same feeling. Now, looking
backward I realize how sad it is that I didnt keep my efforts going and tried to achieve more.
Hopefully, I realized that a few years ago and tried to get my motivation back by myself but it was
very hard in the French scholarship because other students are also very negative globally. This show
that someone with good capabilities can be impede in its productivity if you dont consider him as a
winner instead of a loser but also that considering someone a winner is better than considering
him normal or not a loser.
Another issue is that some big companies fear so much bad employees (= liars, cheaters and
so on) that they generate a system which consider 90% of people as bad employees. They put
restrictive measure in order to avoid a lot of behavior, therefore preventing good employees to act
the way they want. The problem is that 95% of employees may be good ones and will be
demotivated while only 5% of them are bad elements and should be treated as well. This point is
crucial because many companies set up stupid policies in order to avoid bad behaviors. E.g.: many
companies dont allow employees to have personal objects on their desk because some people may

Nicole Haubert, Diriger et motiver, Page 31, accessed on 8-16-2011

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Reinforcement 53

put stupid things. The result is that employees feel that they cant express their personality at work
which makes them demotivated.
This is another sign of bad Operating Conditioning management: employees spend more
time to think about what they shouldnt do that what they should do. This happens very often
because of companies setting up too much rules about what shouldnt be done. The best way to
avoid this is to consider employees as adult, smart and responsible who will behave in the proper
way by themselves and learn by themselves when theyve done something wrong. It is a very good
way to boost productivity because employees will spend more time on their task and will be more
likely to share their experiences and share with each other what should be done or avoided.
Therefore the rules will become obvious and generally accepted instead of being written on a
Positive Reinforcement is globally the best way to take for generating positive behaviors but
it also has its limits. For example, many big companies used to put in practice the Positive
Reinforcement and had very good results. They were giving incentives to the best vendors, most
successful people and so on. However, some employees may be willing to do whatever it takes to get
the incentive, which also mean illegal, unethical behavior including trying to set apart peers who
could also win. Also, there was an issue with Renault car dealerships in France. The manager of the
car dealership with the highest revenue would earn very nice incentives. However, there was a very
big car dealership and the manager was always winning easily because the others were too small to
compete with. The Positive Reinforcement had therefore no value and could even be seen as
demotivating by others because they were always losing. Nevertheless, the results for Positive
Reinforcement are mostly positive and are still the best alternative of all 4 types of reinforcement.


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Equity Theory 54

2. Equity Theory
This second part of the Mechanism of Motivation is a key element in the process of
motivation. Indeed, every human being, whoever it is, builds a sort of permanent system of
evaluation in its mind. It may be unconscious or not. We all have this way of thinking: we weight
everything in order to know if the right balance is reach, if there is equilibrium between what we give
and what we get. For an employee it means what he gives to the companies versus what he gets
from the company.
What is given to the company is estimated in terms of time and energy but also according to
the level of intelligence, expertise and experience of the employee (quantity and quality of the
contribution). These are the Inputs.
What the employee gets from the company is the salary and incentives but also other kinds
of rewards like a promotion, more responsibilities, more recognition, a better status and so on. These
are the Outcomes.
Examples of Inputs and Outcomes

Hard Work
Personal sacrifice
Trust in superiors
Support from co-workers and colleagues
Interpersonal skills
Job security
Sense of achievement
Stimuli (Positive Reinforcement)
Flexible work arrangements

Wikipedia, Equity Theory, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equity_theory#Definition_of_equity, accessed on 08-

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Equity Theory 55

When the employee tries to estimate the equilibrium between Inputs and Outcomes he uses
benchmarking to compare with other employees (from the same company or another) and from
previous experiences. Then he decides whether he is treated fairly or not, and he does it in a total
subjective way. Actually, the employee can make a fair judgment of his situation but he could also
make false assumptions. Given that he lacks all the elements for judging everything, and that he may
have received misleading information, there are chances that he build a false representation of the
reality. This makes it very hard for the managers to monitor and improve this vision.
Obviously, the employee will mostly base his judgment on the comparison with employees of
the same company, especially the one with the same responsibilities. Indeed, it would be acceptable
that someone with a lot of experience and responsibilities earns more than others given than its
contribution is bigger. However, if two people do the same work with the same responsibilities but
one gets more remuneration and recognition, then the other one will be dissatisfied and adjust its
work according to the difference in the Outcomes. Indeed, the employee will adjust his
Contributions to the company depending on the Perceived Equity that he gets. This adjustment can
be either positive or negative for the company depending on the situation (e.g.: if someone thinks
he is overpaid he may work harder).
When working with teams, the managers can optimize the collective reward by using an
intelligent system for rewarding. Instead of equality, the managers can seek for equity. The members
of the team have to accept this system of equity and the best way to do it is by making it more
profitable to behave equitably than inequitably. This can be helped by the system of reinforcement:
more rewards for employees behaving properly and less for the ones behaving badly.
This point is very important because individuals evolving in companies were rewards are
inequitably distributed trend to be confused. The more the inequitable the distribution of rewards,
the more confused employees will be. In the previous example of an inequity in the rewards for the
same work, both employees will be confused and not only the least rewarded. The most rewarded
may feel guilty or ashamed when the least rewarded may feel angry or humiliated. Usually, people
facing this kind of situation will try to avoid this feeling of confusion (its a negative emotion
according to our Limbic System). The greater the inequity, the more people feel confused and try to
restore equity. Indeed, the most rewarded may have a false representation of reality and may think
that he deserved more reward. Also, even if the rewards were equitable according to an objective
evaluation, employees opinion may differ. Thus, it is very complicated to manage equity. The best
way to prevent issues is to make the reward system and criteria explicit from the beginning, to ask
the employees if they agree with it and then to monitor and appreciate objectively the work done.

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Equity Theory 56

The idea is to grant remuneration, other incentives and recognition (Outcomes) according to
the quality and the quantity of the contributions (Inputs). The global Perceived Equity will influence
every employee. In general, employees will try to reach this:
Hy Inputs
Hy 0utcomcs

Usually, people will seek to maximize their Outcomes but sometimes they also try to limit
their Inputs. The objective is the same because Outcomes are considered as rewards minus costs (so
less Input for the same rewards means increased Outcomes). Employees have various ways to
influence this. They can distort the vision of the Inputs and/or Incomes in their own mind (Cognitive
Distortion) which means for example giving more/less credit to a certain type of effort or reward.
This is purely emotional and subjective because the fact is the same, only the vision of the fact
changes. Anyway, the equation changes in the mind of the employee and so does his perception of
the equity/inequity. The employee can also directly influence on the Inputs/Incomes which means
modification of the reality (facts) instead of the perception of the reality (emotions).
Equity is essential not only for the employees and managers but also for the company.
Actually, if someone working for the organization cant reach a good Inputs/Outcomes ratio, the
levels of absenteeism will increase and this person may eventually leave the company. Globally,
the level of equity greatly impacts employees morale, efficiency, productivity and turnover.
From these observations, we can build 3 statements:
1) Every employee expects to receive a fair amount of compensation to his contributions.
Every one of them wants to receive as much as he gives and builds his own perception of
the equity in the company. This is called the equity norm. This norm is different from
an individual to another and may change over time. For managers, it implies that the
Outcomes granted to employees are variable for each situation. For example, someone
may be willing to earn less money for more flexible working hours. Also, the same
Outcomes may be worth more or less depending on the location (e.g.: a manager recruits
people for same positions but in several countries with a difference in living costs).


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Equity Theory 57

2) Employees compare themselves to each other for determining the equity norm and
deciding if its respected or not. They make an estimation of their own Inputs and
Incomes and compare it to the Inputs and Incomes of coworkers. This is called the social
comparison. The main issue here is that employees will build a subjective opinion of the
equity norm. The problem is that two employees with the same experience,
qualifications and doing the same job may have a different perception of the fairness
of their Outcomes. This makes it difficult for managers to handle equity at work,
especially because some Inputs or Outcomes are difficult to assess objectively. This is
why the perception of Incomes and Outcomes has to be managed dynamically.

3) Employees feeling that they are in an inequitable situation will try to reduce the
inequity. This can be done either by modifying their perception of the reality (Cognitive
Distortion) or by directly altering their Inputs or Outcomes. Some people may accept the
inequity for a while and wait for the organization to restore equity. In the end,
employees will always try to restore equity and if they cant do it their overall
performance will be badly affected. This can take more or less time depending on the
individual but it will always occur. Employees who cant restore equity will eventually
leave the company. This is very bad for companies because highly skilled employees
leave companies because they feel inequity at work.

Now that we have dealt with Equity, we will take a look at another aspect of the Mechanism
of Motivation: Expectancy.


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Expectancy Theory 58

3. Expectancy Theory
Expectancy Theory explains why an individual will choose to make a choice instead of
another. This choice is built on the probability for obtaining specific Outcomes. In other words,
someone will take action if he thinks that it will enable him to reach an objective, or to get a reward.
Depending on the Outcomes that the individual wants the most at a determined moment, he will
adapt his behavior to get it. It means that if the desires of the individual change during the process,
the behavior will change as well. However, the Outcomes are not the only factor influencing the
decision. There are 3 main elements influencing it: Expectancy, Instrumentality and Valence
1) Expectancy
Expectancy is defined as the probability of success depending on the individuals
capabilities. Indeed, this probability is determined by the individual himself, thus it depends on the
perception the individual has of its own capabilities. For an employee, it means evaluating the
objective and the chances of success. He will ask himself:
- Am I able to reach this level of performance, to solve this kind of problem?
- If I try to do it, what is the probability for me to succeed?
The main issue for the person is to evaluate if the effort will result in the desired
performance or not. Many elements are influencing this evaluation:
Past experiences in similar situations: failures, success and observation of other people
who faced the same kind of situation.
Self-confidence (see also self-efficacy
): ones belief about its ability to be successful.
The perception of the difficulty of the performance: it is the goal difficulty.
The control of over the situation: the ability of the individual to influence the success.
Obviously, each elements may influence positively or negatively the Expectancy. Negative
Past Experiences will lower it will positive ones will increase it. Also, it is interesting to note that Self-
Efficacy influences Expectancy but is also affected by the 3 other elements. The Goal Difficulty is
relative but many criteria and other peoples opinion make it objectively assessable. The last one,
Control over the situation is very important. Indeed, if an individual is skilled but the success depend
mostly on external factors and he has little role to play, the Expectancy is affected negatively. More
control usually gives us better chances to reach the objectives, unless we are poorly skilled and
external factors would make it easier (which is unlikely to happen most of the time).


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Expectancy Theory 59

2) Instrumentality
This is the probability to be rewarded or not if the objective is reached. These rewards may
be a monetary compensation, a promotion, recognition or a sense of self-actualization. Indeed, if the
rewards are huge but the probability of receiving them after the effort is low, then the
Instrumentality is low. The question here is:
What will I get for this effort?
In general, the most influencing factors of Instrumentality are:
Trust: if the individual trust his superior then he will believe their leaders promises. If
there is not trust, the individual will try to take control over the reward system (e.g.:
signing a contract specifying the objectives and the rewards). More control means an
increased Instrumentality.
Control: if the individual can ensure himself that the reward will be received when the
performance is reached, then the Instrumentality increases.
Policies: if the company policies are to reward performance and that they are respected,
then the Instrumentality increases.
If the employee estimates that there is a high probability for obtaining the rewards then
Instrumentality is high.
3) Valence
This is the subjective value of the rewards. This is very important because even if the
employees understood exactly what the rewards were and are ensured to receive them; they may
not be interested in these rewards. Indeed, if the employee doesnt care about the reward, then he
wont be motivated to get it. Therefore, the manager has to determine the current needs of the
employees in order to offer the corresponding rewards. This is linked to what we saw previously with
Maslows Hierarchy of Needs and Herzbergs Motivation-Hygiene Theory. Employees will ask
Do I really want this? Is it really important to me to get this?
What is the value of the rewards?
The answer to this question will be based on their own needs, goals, values and other
sources of motivation. There is no single to this answer. Every employee has a different answer to

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Expectancy Theory 60

this question and look for different type of rewards. This implies that managers have to know well
their employees in order to raise Valence.
Also, the employees opinion about some specific rewards may change over time. Indeed,
they will review their opinion as their personality evolves. This is why always using the same rewards
will be boring for the employees and they will eventually stop trying to get these rewards, even if
they rushed for it before. Moreover, Valence low if the same rewards are given for smaller
performances or for all similar performances. Thus, it is better to have an original reward, specific to
the performance, for increasing Valence. Usually, Valence could be rated from -1 to +1.
Influence of Valence

In some cases, different types of rewards may be available depending on the action taken.
For example, an employee may decide to do something or not depending on his ethics. On one hand
he could make money by doing something considered unethical, or even illegal, and on another hand
he could make less money but respect ethics and laws. People will act differently depending on their
beliefs and values. This shows how Valence can vary from one person to another.

Will avoid the rewards
Is indifferent to the rewards
Will be willing to get the rewards

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Expectancy Theory 61

The Motivational Force is determined by the combination of these 3 factors: Expectancy,
Instrumentality and Valence. We usually define this force by the following formula.
Hot:otionol Forcc = Expcctoncy Instrumcntolity Iolcncc
The Motivational Force

Now I will give some concrete examples for illustrating what we just talked about.
You offer me the opportunity for getting a big monetary reward if I raise the sales by 20%
in 3 months. The reward is huge for me: 15,000. Now I think a little bit about and realize
that for some reason its impossible (the market, my capabilities whatever). Then what
will be my motivation for achieving this performance considering that I think that it is
impossible for me?
We are a team of 15 persons and you offer each month a big reward to the one who will
be able to sale the biggest amount of products during a specified time. We all sell the
same kind of product to the same kind of client and we have the same personal
capabilities. However, we are all selling at different point of sales. One of the points of
sales as a much better catchment area and there are far more opportunities for selling
than on other points of sales. This advantage is such that it becomes virtually impossible
for the other point of sales to compete. Month after month, the employee will realize
that they cant compete with the best one. Even if you rotate them it will be useless
"What is the
probability of
"What will I get for
this effort?"
"What is the value
of the rewards?"


IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Expectancy Theory 62

because everyone will know in advance who will earn the reward. How will their
motivation be affected by the possible rewards?
Here we have two examples for a low Expectancy. The rewards are very good but the
probability of obtaining them is close to zero, thus the motivation is close to zero.

If my objective is to get a promotion. You ask me to go to a professional training for one
week but this training wont help me to get promoted. What will be my motivation for
this training? What will be the return on investment for this training if my motivation is
I constantly write reports during my job. I learn that they all end up in a drawer and are
barely being read, maybe not even read. Then you ask me to write another report which
is very important to you. What will be my motivation for this work?
These two examples show an evident lack of Instrumentality. There is no link for me
between the effort you asked me to do and a reward for me. And as we can see, it is bad both for
the employee and the company.



IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | Expectancy Theory 63

You offer me a great promotion for achieving a very hard mission during the next 6
months. Getting this promotion would mean for me a bigger salary and more
responsibilities but also to move to another city far from here. I have a wife and two kids
and it is impossible for me to take them with me (either because they dont want or
cant). What will be my motivation for achieving this mission?
I need to meet my clients personally so I am constantly driving. It takes me a lot of time
and energy and I do a very good work so I ask for a salary increase and the authorization
for using my professional phone for personal calls. You consider the salary increase too
costly and that using my professional phone for personal purpose will decrease my
productivity. However, you have a very nice sport car available and offer this car for
replacing the one you were lending to me. You think that this sport car will make me feel
better because of the social status it gives. Are my needs satisfied? What do I get from
having this sport car and that I really wanted to have?
The problem in these examples was that the prestigious rewards were not corresponding to
my needs and thus had no value for me. This shows that whatever is the value of the rewards, the
only true value is the one given by the person who receives it
Now we are going to put all these elements together in order to have a global vision of the
Mechanism of Motivation. Keep in mind that you have to consider all these elements as a whole.

This remark is also true for Christmas gifts.

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | The Motivation Pattern 64

4. The Motivation Pattern

Value of the
Perceived probability of
getting the rewards if the
effort is done
Is the Effort
worth it?
Capabilities and
Opportunities for
achieving success
Can I reach the
What do I get if I
reach the Objectives?
Am I satisfied by
the Rewards?
Perceived Equity
of the rewards
This is the representation of the Mechanism of Motivation weve talked about. You have to start reading this pattern from the left and to
follow the central line in Red. The Elements in Blue with Blue arrows affect the Red ones. The Green arrows mean that there are parts in the
process that dont follow the central line but are still important. Now we will make a detailed explanation of this pattern.
Step 1
Step 2
Step 3
Step 4
Step 1: Is the Effort worth it?
The individual answer to this question by considering 2 things:
Valence: the value of the rewards depending on the individuals needs.
Instrumentality: the individuals perceived probability of getting the rewards if the
effort is done.
Step 2: Can I reach the objectives?
Then, if the Effort is worth it, the individual will ask himself if he can actually reach the
objectives. This is the Expectancy which is fulfilled when:
The individual has the capabilities AND the self-efficacy for achieving the goals.
Indeed, for the Effort to be worth it the individual needs specific capabilities and
trust in these capabilities. If he thinks that he cant do it, he will give up.
The individual has the opportunities for achieving the goals. Indeed, it is possible that
there is no way for him to reach the performance because of organizational issues or
because it is impossible to complete the mission even we greater capabilities. If the
feasibility is low, the motivation is low.
Step 3: What do I get if I reach the Objectives?
Now if the individual can reach the objectives, then the question is what kind of rewards he
will get. There two types of rewards:
Intrinsic Rewards: doing an interesting job, accomplishing great things, having a
great career In other words it is self-actualization.
Extrinsic Rewards: salary increase, perks, bonus Everything linked to the
Step 4: Am I satisfied by the rewards?
These rewards are linked to the Reinforcement because they encourage employees to
achieve a specific performance. They are vital to the Satisfaction of the employee but not sufficient.
These rewards have to be considered with another important factor: Equity. Actually, the individual
has to estimate that the rewards he got are enough for compensating all the efforts he has done. The
Outcomes have to be balanced with the Inputs. When all these conditions are fulfilled, then the
employee is satisfied.

IV. Part II Motivation | The Mechanism of Motivation | The Motivation Pattern 66

Yet if you want to start over the whole process of motivation and keep it working, you have
to provide satisfaction. This is why there are links going backward from the Satisfaction to the
beginning of the process. This is the principle of the experience and will affect the whole process on
the long run.



V. Leadership | Leader or Manager? | The Motivation Pattern 67

V. Leadership
A. Leader or Manager?
Knowing the processes of motivations and its mechanism is not enough to get a team
motivated. You also need a good leadership.
Motivating people is possible only if we are able to make them want to do something or not
for us. The true leaders are the ones able to use emotional and spiritual resources of an organization;
not only the physical resources, competences or technologies. They share a captivating vision of the
future which is spread through the organization and motivate people toward common goals. They
use this vision more than by using rewards and punishments. The most interesting studies about
leadership showed that the most important ability of best leaders was to regroup their peers toward
the same vision of the future, whether it is to achieve new objectives or to face harsh times. Great
leader are indeed smart people with high cognitive capabilities and also high emotional intelligence.
They know what they are talking about, can analyze situations and then create an adequate answer.
One of their main ability is also the ability to communicate. Indeed, they couldnt motivate
everyone around a global vision without good communication skills, even though the vision itself
would be attractive to everybody. Actually, by communicating properly they can give life to the
vision; make it real, tangible and feasible. They get entrusted by people who then follow them in
their ideas.
This ability to lead people is different than the ability to manage people. Even though
managers have to somehow be able to lead people, managing people is not exactly the same as
leading them. The Manager is someone who should manage the complexity of a situation and
organize teams. He deals with such things as product quality and profitability. The Leader has a
different role: he has to lead the changes in a dynamic environment. The modern competitive
environment is an ever changing place. In other words, the manager knows what he has to do and
the leader knows what has to be done. This is why leaders are often considered as visionary; its
because they lead people toward a vision which is very important considering the fast pace of change
in the modern competitive environment.


V. Leadership | Leader or Manager? | The Motivation Pattern 68

The difference between Manager and Leader

Manage complexity Lead change
Bring order and consistency Create meaning, energy and cohesion
Knows what he has to do Knows what has to be done

There is a distinction between the Manager and the Leader but they are complementary. You
can be both a manager AND a leader. The style is different but the objective is the same: motivating
people toward common goals. Leaders will do it by talking about future projects while managers will
help in everyday tasks for assuring the project to be successful. There is a need both for managing
and motivating people by adapting to their needs and also their maturity.


Nicole Haubert, Diriger et Motiver, page 72.

V. Leadership | The best leadership style | The Old Way 69

B. The best leadership style
This part is based on readings from Diriger et Motiver (Lead and Motivate), Nicole Haubert.
For a long time, people tried to find out if there was a better and unique way to lead people,
the best leadership style. The problem is that there is no magical formula, no simple solution. The
issue is that depending on the situation and on the people, the best leadership style is different. This
is why the best leadership style is what we could call an adaptive style; with a style of leadership
adapted to the current situation and people.
1. The Old Way
Blake & Mouton developed the Managerial Grid Model in 1964
. There are two important
factors to consider in this grid:
Concern for Tasks: achieving the objectives, organizing, planning, monitoring,
Concern for People: taking care of people, listening to them, resolving conflicts
These two factors can be graded from 1 to 9. Depending on the grades, the manager has a
different type of leadership. There are 5 main styles
1) The Indifferent Style (grade 1,1): this one is the opposite of a leader because he lets
people do what they want and dont really interact with them. He avoids problems
whether they are linked to people or tasks and have no concerns in both. Usually,
this type of manager tries to preserve his job (especially job seniority). They protect
themselves from troubles by avoiding taking any action. They dont want to be held
responsible for problems and mistakes. This is a very poorly effective management
style which leads to low innovation, risk taking, production Unfortunately, this
style is existing in many corporation and even more in the governmental
2) The Accommodating Style (grade 1,9): this style is centered on people but not on the
tasks. The problem is that people will be taken care of but production will be bad.
Managers using this style of leadership hope that by paying much attention to the
employees they will increase their performance. It often results in a very friendly
atmosphere with a low productivity (this is why this style was initially called Country
Club Style).

Wikipedia, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Managerial_grid_model, accessed on 08-27-2011
Original names are changed for more clarity

V. Leadership | The best leadership style | The Old Way 70

3) The Dictatorial Style (grade 9,1): this kind of leader likes to control and dominate. It
thinks that employees are just a tool, a mean used to achieve goals. Thus, it has low
concern for people and a very high concern for production. It is an autocratic style
involving very strict rules, policies and procedures. Also, punishments are considered
to be the best mean to motivate employees. This style doesnt care about most
needs of employees, only the minimum (it provides a salary and eventually cares
about hygiene factors). It is considering Theory X as the right one
4) The Status Quo Style (grade 5,5): this a balanced style of leadership trying to balance
between the needs of the works and the needs of the company. It may appear to be
the best style because it is a good compromise. Nevertheless, it tends to give away
some concerns of both employees and the company which means that neither of
them has their needs fully met. As a result, an average performance is achieved and
the leader thinks this is the best which can be done. As we know, either people or
the company has to make sacrifices for getting the best results (it depends on the
5) The Sound Style (grade 9,9): this is the kind of leader who takes actively part in the
work and is committed to both the employees and the company. Thus, this leader
has a high concern for everyone. He will follow Theory Y instead of Theory X. He will
usually give more importance to the Motivators we have seen in Part II. This means
that employees will feel they are an important part of the company and will be
willing to work as a team.
Indeed, the issue with this Grid is that it considers a few static leadership styles and assumes
that the Sound Style is the best one. I wanted to show this grid because it can still be useful. The
Concern for People and Concern for Tasks factors help to rate a specific leader and define him.
The issue with using this model is that it doesnt take in account many other factors which are
important for adapting a style of leadership. You dont have an adaptive style. Therefore, this kind of
model shouldnt be taken in account while deciding a management style. People making these
models try to find an easy solution.


V. Leadership | The best leadership style | What situation? 71

2. What situation?
The effectiveness of a leadership style widely depends on the situation it is used in. Globally,
it depends on three factors:
1) The Power of the Leader: the real power the leader has in terms of hierarchical
position, different kind of resources, ability to give rewards or to punish.
2) The Nature of the Task: the possibility to plan the different steps of the tasks and
build a schedule.
3) The Relationships: between the leader and the team (good or bad).
These factors can generate a very favorable or unfavorable situation for the leader and thus
making it easier or more difficult to lead. It has been observed that usually, in extreme situations
(very favorable or very unfavorable situation) a leadership style focused on Concerns for People
was less effective than a style focused on Concern for Tasks. Actually, during very favorable
situations, the best results were obtained by focusing on the task to accomplish instead of losing
time with human issues. During very unfavorable situations, it was also better to focus on the task
and solve the problems before thinking about human issues. For all intermediate situations,
leadership styles allocating more time for discussing human issues were giving better results.
This could be linked to the functions of our brain and our needs. Indeed, during very
favorable situations people want to seize the opportunity for achieving their goals, they want to
reach self-actualization and dont let this opportunity go. Therefore, they are able to delay some
other concerns. During very unfavorable situations, focusing on a task to accomplish helps people
forget about the negative situation and other concerns. In other words, it helps avoiding negative
emotions by being focused on rational thinking. When intermediate situation are faced, more time
can be allocated to human issues because these issues are mostly emotional. Indeed, in an
intermediate situation the employees will be emotionally stable, or at least more than in extreme


V. Leadership | The best leadership style | The Leader Behavior 72

3. The Leader Behavior
The situation is not the only answer for determining the leadership style to be used. The idea
is that the leader is in a dynamic environment which means that he has to adapt to this ever
changing environment. One of the key elements of this changing environment is people. Depending
on the readiness of the employees, the leader will have to adopt a different kind of behavior.

As you can see, the leader involvement in the task and in motivating people will be different
depending on the readiness of the employees (Commitment and Competence). It can go from a
directing style to a delegating style.


V. Leadership | The best leadership style | The Leader Behavior 73

We will analyze this pattern from the right to the left, for unready people to totally ready
people. The verbs are not enough for giving a clear idea of the leadership style so names have been
Directing (The Commander): this way of behaving can be used with inexperienced
people. They usually need specific instructions and close supervision, especially if
they feel insecure about the tasks given. Even though they are motivated and skilled,
they dont know the company, the priorities, procedures, policies The motivation is
not sufficient for compensating the lack of experience and they have to learn how to
do (even more given that their enthusiasm may lead to mistakes). This style can also
be used for unmotivated people impossible to motivate because of the absence of
potential Motivators. In this case, the best way to behave is to fulfill Hygiene
Factors and to tell them what to do.
Coaching (The Coach): this one is one is needed when an employee is disappointed,
either because the work given to him does not correspond to what he intended to or
the rewards not good enough or if he starts doubting about its capabilities. The
purpose is to provide guidance and support and to encourage the person in
accomplishing the tasks. It can be done by giving specific instructions but is mostly
about listening and talking with the concerned employee (emotional support).
Supporting (The Counselor): when people have the experience and skills to perform
the tasks but lack self-confidence and enthusiasm, there is a need for support. It is
similar to the Coach but neither advice nor orders have to be given in this style.
Here the most important things are active listening, to share ideas and to provide
encouragement. It is an emotional help for the employees. This help will enable them
to fully use their capabilities.
Delegating (The Consultant): when people are committed and competent, there is
no need neither for telling them what to do nor to emotionally support them. This is
why it is called the Consultant; the employee doesnt need the leader and takes all
the decision by himself and is self-motivated. Nevertheless, the leader has to be
available and show to the employee that he can still count on him.
A good leader should be able to adapt its behavior depending on the situation he is facing
instead of having one kind of behavior only. The main difficulty is to define in which situation the
leader currently is. The commitment can be estimated depending on the self-confidence and the
motivation of the employee. The experience is harder to define and is usually learned by practicing

V. Leadership | The best leadership style | The Leader Behavior 74

leadership (which means that you need a good experience of leadership for estimating others
Choosing the style is not so hard but we have to be sure to know which situation we are
facing. The extreme situations are easy to identify but the intermediate ones are really tricky. The
difference between being Supporting and Coaching is very hard to perceive and so is the
transition from the intermediate situation to the extreme one.
The main flaw of this model is that it is focused mostly on the relationship between the
employee and the leader. Many other external factors are not taken in account, like the economy or
the market. I will now talk about leadership styles linked to emotional intelligence.


V. Leadership | Primal Leadership | The Leader Behavior 75

C. Primal Leadership
This part is inspired from Primal Leadership Learning to lead with emotional intelligence,
Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis and Annie McKee.
When I was in New York at the Saint Johns University, we had to read this book for the
American Management course (I had Mr. Schwartz as a professor). This book was very inspirational
to me, more than the book of Nicole Haubert which contains very interesting information about
human behaviors and functioning but lacks something fundamental to me considering leadership:
Emotional Intelligence. Indeed, a leader is someone able to gather its people around a common
vision and common goals. In order to do this, he has to use emotions because they play a great part
in the creation of this vision, more based on imagination than facts.
Primal Leadership deals with emotional skills and competences as well as the way to used
them to lead people. This was one of the most interesting lectures I had because it shows how
emotions can be spread through an organization. In this book, they talk about the ability of a leader
to spread positive emotions (resonance) or negative emotions (dissonance) in an organization and
the impact on its results. It has been proved that resonant styles of leadership had obtained better
results than the dissonant ones. There are some exceptions for using dissonant leadership styles but
they have to be used with care.
I will first here talk about the emotional intelligence domains and associated competences.
Then I will talk about the different styles of leadership identified in this book which are related to the
resonance/dissonance principle. I will also. This will be a different approach from what we saw just


V. Leadership | Primal Leadership | Emotional intelligence domains and associated

1. Emotional intelligence domains and associated competences
We will talk here about the four domains of Emotional Intelligence Competences. They are
divided in two categories: Personal Competences and Social Competences. I like this model because
it makes it clear what kind of competences we need to be emotionally efficient and to what they are
related. It is a good pattern for self-evaluation and self-improvement. You can think about each one
of these talents and see which ones to strengthen and which ones to improve. Actually, we are not
born with all these skills; we have to learn and practice them all our life long. Mastering these talents
will lead to a more resonant (spread positive emotion) personality. This means that you will globally
impact people more positively (positive leadership) even when not at work. It is important to keep
that in mind because leadership is something built in the personality and is best if permanently
a. Personal Competences
These capabilities determine how we manage ourselves
Emotional Self-awareness: ability to read our own emotions and to recognize the
impact they have on our thinking and behaving. Leaders with a high emotional self-
awareness follow strong guiding values and are able to take the right decision in a
complex situation thanks to their ability to see the big picture. This kind of leader is
authentic, emotionally open and will talk openly about its guiding values and vision.
Accurate Self-assessment: capability to know our own strengths and weaknesses.
Leaders with a high self-awareness are able to know what he can do and when to
stop. They are able to have self-derision and are open to constructive criticism and
feed-back. They like to learn where they need to improve and build strengths. When
needed, they dare ask for help.
Self-Confidence: sense of what we are worth and the capabilities we have. It is very
important for leaders for facing a difficult situation. Also, these leaders have a strong
presence that differentiates them from others and makes people willing to follow


V. Leadership | Primal Leadership | Emotional intelligence domains and associated

Emotional Self-control: ability to keep disturbing emotions and impulses under
control and even to use them in useful way. Leaders with high emotional self-control
can stay calm and think clear during a crisis or high stress. They can maintain this
control over their emotions even when facing a challenging situation.
Transparency: showing honesty and integrity. Transparent leaders show their values
in an authentic way. They are opened to listening others values and beliefs and they
respect them. They openly admit their mistakes and faults. This is why they are
considered to be trustworthy. They also tend to denounce unethical behaviors rather
than ignoring it.
Adaptability: ability to adapt to change. Great leaders are able to maintain their
focus and energy during changing situation and when facing obstacles. They are
flexible and adapt easily to the organizational life. New challenges, new data and
new realities are not a problem for them.
Achievement: will to improve performance to meet inner standards. Leaders with
this strength will constantly look for improving themselves and the people they lead.
They have high standards, set challenging but reachable objectives and are able to
calculate risks in a pragmatic way. They continually learn and teach ways to do
Initiative: readiness to act and seize opportunities. This competence corresponds to
leaders with a good self-efficacy. They know that they are competent and can reach
the objective so they go for it. They seize opportunities instead of waiting;
sometimes they even create their own opportunities. Their objective is to create a
better future even if it means neutralizing some bureaucratic rules and procedures.
Optimism: ability to look at the upside instead of the downside. Optimistic leaders
will see opportunities while others will see a threat for the same event. They look at
situations positively and look at people positively, often motivating them by giving
positive feedback while these persons think negatively about themselves. They think
that the future will be better.


V. Leadership | Primal Leadership | Emotional intelligence domains and associated

b. Social Competences
These capabilities determine how we manage relationships.
Empathy: perceiving accurately others emotions, to understand their point of view
and to take interest in their concerns. Leaders with this competence are able to
identify hidden and unspoken emotions and feelings. They actively and attentively
listen to others and truly understand their vision of the situation. This is a very
important trait of character for getting along with people coming from different
cultures and backgrounds.
Organizational Awareness: ability to read the functioning of an organization. Such
leaders can understand the way an organization work with all subtle details:
currents, unspoken rules, unofficial leaders They detect the vital social networks
and identify key power relationships.
Service: recognizing and fulfilling needs of people, whoever it is. Leaders with this
capability to build good long term relationship with their clients and also their peers
(needs of employees are important for the company). Indeed, they listen to them,
identify their needs and monitor their satisfaction. They make themselves available
to others in order to be ensured that they get what they want.
Inspirational leadership: guide and motivate people by offering an attractive vision of
the future. These leaders inspire people and motivate them with a vision or a
mission. They gather people toward common goals. They stand for what they ask to
others and present things in a way which makes people willing to follow them. They
make the work more exciting by giving more sense to it than the sometimes boring
day-to-day tasks.
Influence: ability to persuade people. Leaders with this ability are persuasive and
engaging when they talk to a group. They find the right way to talk and know the
right people to talk to. They give to the listener the arguments they are looking for.
Developing others: provide feedback and guidance to others in order to constantly
develop their abilities. This is linked to Achievement competence. Leaders with this
skill will cultivate others abilities and take interest in understanding them, their
goals, strengths and weaknesses. They take time to give an objective point of view in
order to help people. They are very good mentors or coaches.

V. Leadership | Primal Leadership | Emotional intelligence domains and associated

Change catalyst: ability to initiate, manage and lead in a new direction. These leaders
are able to identify when the change is needed and to initiate it. Then they lead
people toward the new direction even though there is a resistance from others. They
find compelling arguments for supporting their ideas and practical ways to overcome
obstacles to change.
Conflict management: resolve disagreement. There are leaders with a strong ability
to understand each partys point of view, to objectively analyze the situation and find
an ideal agreement that everyone will endorse. They are hard on the problem, not on
the people.
Teamwork and Collaboration: bring cooperation and build teams. Best leaders are
great team players and able to generate a good atmosphere. They set a good
example of respect, helpfulness and cooperation. They draw others into collective
effort by opposition to individualistic behaviors. They build a strong team spirit and
identity beyond the one already existing in the organization.

As you can see, some competencies are closely linked. You may have the same ability for self-
management and relationship management. This is because we can do for us what we do for others
and vice versa. The purpose of establishing this list is to identify our own strengths and weaknesses
and to work on them. We can also do it for others.


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2. The leadership styles
In this book, six different leadership styles are defined. They can all be productive leadership
styles but it depends on the situation. As we said before, there is a need for adaptation the
leadership style to the situation and to the people. This is also the case for these leadership styles,
especially the two last ones considered as bad because often misused (but they can be very useful in
some situations). The six leadership styles we are going to talk about are:
The Visionary style
The Coaching style
The Affiliative style
The Democratic style
The Pacesetting style
The Commanding style
The 4 firsts ones are called resonant because they generate positive emotional state through
the organization. The 2 last ones are called dissonant because they create negative emotional states
in the organization (not if used properly, which is not the case most of the time).


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a. The Visionary Leader
This kind of leader moves people toward shared dreams, a positive and ideal vision of the
future. It mostly has a strong positive impact because it globally makes the emotional climate
positive and changes the spirit of the organization at many levels. This kind of leader gives a vision of
where to go but doesnt explain how to get there. This makes people the masters of their own
destiny: they can innovate, experiment and take risks the way they want. They are provided the big
picture and what is expected from them; how they do it is their choice. This way of leading gives
them the feeling that they all move toward the same goals. Therefore, there is a strong team
commitment and people feel pride in belonging to their organization.
Another benefit of this leadership style is to retain the most valuable employees. The best
employees are usually looking for something special in their job for reaching high job satisfaction.
They want to work for a company sharing specific values, goals and missions. They somehow want to
work for a brand because this will represent who they are. Indeed, when people know who you are
working for, it impacts your social life.
This greater vision of the future also sets standards for performance. It shows to people how
their work impacts the organization and why it is so important. This style is very good for achieving
long term goals and setting up long term strategies. This is the classic leadership style, the one which
is the most used and taught. This is also the most effective of all the styles because it changes the
everyday tasks (often boring) into something exiting and meaningful.
This leadership style can work in many situations because of its positive impact. It is more
effective if the business is in need for deep changes whether it is to take a new direction or to make
to current one brighter.
Nevertheless, this style of leadership wont work in every situation. For instance, it will fail if
the leader is dealing with teams of expert who are more skilled and experienced than him. They will
see him as someone trying to give himself a better image of what he is doing instead of focusing on
what has to be done. This will often result in poor performance because of the reject of this vision
given by the leader will lead to a reject of most of what he says. Another example would be a
visionary leader becoming authoritative in his vision. It would lead to a destruction of the team spirit.
Despite of these few limitations, every leader should know about this style and use it. It
wont be enough for reaching the success but will help it for sure on the long run.


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The most important EI competences for the Visionary are:
Inspirational Leadership: necessary for building an ideal vision.
Self-awareness: to build a vision that is reachable.
Self-confidence: for leading the change.
Empathy: to understand how others feel and what are their perspectives.
Transparency: people will trust the vision if the leader truly believes in it.



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b. The Coaching Style
A coach is someone helping people to identify their strengths and weaknesses and to link it
to their personal and professional lives. It is someone who will motivate people to define long term
development goals and to define a plan for reaching those goals. In this process, the coach also has
to define clearly the roles and responsibilities of both himself and the person he is coaching.
In a company, a coaching style can be very efficient for motivating employees. The leader will
get to know employees better, on a personal level, and use it to make a link between their
aspirations and the objectives of the company. This will greatly boost the motivation of employees
because they tend to focus on the aspect of what they like the most in their jobs. Thus, by linking
their dreams to the tasks they are assigned to, motivation to perform these tasks is created.
Coaches also have the ability to delegate work, providing employees challenging assignments
instead of keeping all the most challenging tasks for themselves. This has a positive impact on
employees mood because they feel that they are granted the opportunity for reaching something
bigger. When succeeding, they feel that they have accomplished something important. They can
reach self-actualization. In addition, a coach has to tolerate short-term failure and let the employees
get more experience and improve their skills through their work. On the long term, these employees
will perform better overall thanks to a better learning process (going through failure is an important
step in learning and getting experience). The coach has to provide employees with feedback that
builds motivation rather than fear. For instance, if an employee succeeds then provide positive
feedback for further performance (and not a threat if such success is not repeated). If he fails, then
analyze with him why and help him use the failure as a positive experience for succeeding in the
future (and not threat of being fired if that occurs again). Threatening an employee may give some
short term results but will be bad on the long run.
A coaching style will be very effective with employees showing initiative more developed
professionally. However, it will fail when employees lack motivation or require excessive directions
and feedback. It will also fail if the leader lacks the competences for helping the employees. When
performed badly, the coaching style looks like micromanagement or excess of control over
employees. This has to be handled with care because such mistake would lead to a decrease in
employees self-confidence and further to a downward performance spiral.
Pacesetters (leaders focused exclusively on high performance) often think they are coaching
people. Truth is that they are micromanaging them or even telling them how to do their job. This
kind of leader focus on short term results such as sales figures. They dont realize that on the long
run employees will feel under considered, like if they we just tools, and lose their motivation. This

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will impede further high performance. The more skilled are the employees, the bigger will be the
impact of the coaching style. Indeed, this style is not used to create bottom-line results but will do so
if used properly on the long run.
The most important EI competences for the Coach are:
Developing others: for discovering employees goal and values and help them
develop new abilities according to it.
Emotional Self-awareness: to know his own interests and give advice in the
employees interests. This avoids manipulating them.
Empathy: to listen first and then answer. This way the coach can act in the interest of
the employees and not his own.
Adaptability: because each person coached will be different.



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c. The Affiliative Style
The affiliative style is focused on emotional issues. It is used to improve team spirit, harmony,
morale, communication or to repair broken trust. It is all about creating relationship with other
people and collaborating with them. Leaders using this style are more concerned about creating
harmony, friendly interactions and nurturing personal relationships. They tend to value people and
their feelings.
When leaders chose to be affiliative, he decides to focus on emotional needs of employees.
They give more importance to it than achieving objectives. This is why it doesnt drive the
performance directly. Nevertheless, it has a very positive impact on employees mood. Employees
feel considered as people, especially if the affiliative style is used to help someone who has big
problems in its personal life.
This style can be used only during specific time. It can be a downtime in the organization
cycle which means more time to build relationship. It is also very useful when a relationship has been
damaged or when someone got personal issues which affect him deeply. It can hardly be used during
pressuring times where there is little or no time for personal issues and focus is on the task. In some
cultures however, it is almost mandatory to build a close relationship before working together.
Generally speaking, the Affiliative style shouldnt be used alone because little concern is
given to performance. Employees may think that bad results are tolerated. This is why the leader has
to be firm and reprimand employees when it has to be. Also, this style is all about sharing emotions
but it doesnt provide constructive solution to how to improve the situation. This is why another style
has to support this one such as the Visionary style which will bring a precise vision of the future,
objectives to reach and standards to meet. Thus the teams wont be lost.
The most important EI competencies for this style are:
Transparency: because honesty is important when sharing feelings. It helps others to
understand your own feelings and to share their own feelings.
Optimism: for thinking positively about what can be done to solve the situation and
what we still have despite of what we have lost.
Empathy: for listening genuinely to others feelings.
Conflict Management: when it is about rebuilding a damaged relationship.
Service: to understand and fulfill employees emotional needs.

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d. The Democratic Style
The Democratic style is about to ask others their opinion about an important decision rather
than just impose this decision to them. This style works better when asking very experienced people.
Indeed, these persons have to be capable of taking such decision or else it would fail. In a company,
experienced employees will know the organization, the people and the market better. Therefore,
they will provide a better decision.
This style can be used even if the leader already has a strong vision of the future of the
company or already knows what he wants to do. The advice of others is always good to take and may
help the leader to implement his solutions and build his vision of the future. While it is not commonly
used, this style is very powerful. Indeed, someone sitting in an office will hardly be aware of
everything happening in the company, especially if its a big one. The Democratic style will bring a
general feedback and advises from many persons. This will greatly help the leader in making the right
decisions. However, this means for the leader to be opened to negative feedback as well as positive
feedback. He has to make employees understand that negative feedback is tolerated and even
encouraged because it helps realize that there are problems and find solution them.
This style also has its drawback. If the leader relies too much on democratic decision then it
generates endless meetings and a lot of time is spend for finding a consensus. After a few meeting,
there will be confusion, lack of confidence in the leader and his ability to make his own decisions.
This delays the decision and has a negative impact on overall performance.
As previously stated, experienced employees are better for using this style. Asking
incompetent or uninformed people will indeed result in bad decisions. Also, this style cant be used in
times of crisis when choices have to be made quickly. Even though a leader is used to this style, he
will have to force himself to stop using it in case of crisis.
The most important EI competences for applying the Democratic style are:
Teamwork and Collaboration: for working with many different people and
considering their opinion even if you dont agree.
Conflict Management: because many people participate, many people will disagree
and have divergent opinions.
Influence: talk to the right people in the right way in order to make the right choice.
Empathy: listening to others is very important for setting a good example of behavior
and also being able to influence others.
Organizational Awareness: to know and understand the functioning of the company
and the key people necessary to take the right decision.

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These four firsts styles are mostly considered as positive. Now we will talk about two other
styles considered as negative because of their misuse: the Pacesetting and Commanding styles.
e. The Pacesetting style
This style is represented by leaders who want excellence from its employees and represent
excellence themselves. They work very well, obtain very good results and expect from their teams to
do the same. This leadership style can work very well when used with highly skilled professionals or
aggressive sales team. This style can be useful when the company (or a product) is in a cycle of
growth. It can get very good results with highly skilled, motivated and independent employees.
However, this style has to be considered properly before being used. If the teams are not prepared
for it the results will be at the opposite.
This seems odd to avoid this kind of style. At first sight, it advocates a leader showing great
performance, asking the same from employees and rewarding them for that. Also, it is a leader
taking care of poor performers by asking them to do better and doing the job himself if necessary.
Nevertheless, if misused this style will leader do loss of motivation and poor performance. The
reason is that some people will feel pushed to far or wont be skilled enough to understand what to
do to reach the objectives. The employees may think that the leader doesnt trust them to get the
job done by their own means. They may also think that the leader doesnt care about them and just
want the job done by whoever it is. The result is a decrease in motivation and low staff morale.
The main issue is that the Pacesetter puts a lot of pressure on its people, thus generating
anxiety. A moderate pressure is fine because it keeps people aware that they have to meet
objectives and deadlines. Without it they would think that the result doesnt matter. High pressure
however is debilitating, it impedes people from thinking and working properly. They only think about
survival and forget their vision of their career. This results in a poorer work quality and less
innovation on the long run.
Once again, this widely depends on the people the Pacesetter leads. It will work well with
employees who are self-motivated, highly competent and need little direction. The main EI
competences needed for being a Pacesetter are:
Achievement: the Pacesetter is always in a need for new ways to improve his own
performance and the one of the people he leads. He is more motivated by the idea of
reaching excellence than by anything else.
Initiative: to constantly create and seize opportunities.

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Empathy: to provide and effective Pacesetting style. Without it, the focus will only be
on achieving goals and people will be neglected.
Self-Awareness: the Pacesetters have to know their own strengths and weaknesses
and to admit when they fail. Else, they will inevitably fail.
Emotional Self-Management: for avoiding micromanagement and impatience.
Teamwork and Collaboration: for trusting others, delegating and providing feedback.
The Pacesetting style works better if used with one of the four resonant styles we saw
before. It can be very efficient if used properly. Most of the time, this kind of leader was a very high
performer in his area and has been chosen for being the leader of his department. The problem is
that high skills in finance, engineering, science or whatever doesnt mean high skills in leadership.
This is why Pacesetters often fail on the long run.



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f. The Commanding Style
This style could be called the Do it because I say so style. It is based on coercion which
means forcing one to do something, even if unwilling to, by using threats, rewards, intimidations or
any other kind of pressure. This style is mostly found in military leaders but also very often in
These Commanders ask people to behave in a certain way and want their employees to do
so without complaining or asking for explanations. When the orders are not followed, they threaten
and intimidate until they get satisfaction. They want to control and monitor everything instead of
delegating. They provide no feedback or only feedback of what has been done wrongly.
This style is the least effective in most situations and leads to a global degradation of mood
and morale. The worst part is that the leader wont realize that he is part of the problem and that if
employees perform so poorly it is because of a bad leader. The constant criticism and the absence of
praise is what affect most negatively the motivation of the most skilled employees. Unfortunately,
this kind of leader is still present in many organizations. It is a style inherited from military leadership
but even military leaders nowadays use other complementary styles linked to teamwork and
Despite of its negative implications, the Commanding style will sometimes be necessary and
leaders should know about it. For instance, during a crisis there is little time for debating and talking
about what has to be done. Quick decisions have to be made and the Commanding style will serve
this purpose well. It will help remove useless business habits and push people to act in new ways that
will help the company go through the problems. It can also be very useful with problem employees if
everything tried to make them change have failed. Globally, it is most suited for situations where a
change has to be made quickly and the leaders know the right decision to take. It is even more
effective if the leader is hard on the problem and not on the people.
The main EI competences for the Commanding style are:
Influence: people have to trust the decision and to accept the orders of the leader.
Achievement: the leader has to be driven by high performance and will of getting
better results.
Initiative: the Commander shall not wait for thing to happen but make them happen.
Self-Awareness: is a prerequisite for emotional self-control and to know to admit

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Emotional Self-Control: this is important for the leader to keep his impatience and
anger instead of spreading it through the organization.
Empathy: to listen to others and what they have to say is useful with this style
because it prevents missteps in using this style.
The 3 first competences are the ones defining a Commander and the 3 last ones are the ones
necessary for using this style positively.
This style is better used only during specific times. Generally speaking, a leader has to adapt
to the situation and use many different competences. A static leadership style will inevitably fail
when the situation will drift.



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VI. Conclusions
The function of the human brain and our different kinds of intelligence and needs are the key
to understanding the global functioning of human beings. Science helps us for that but the best way
to learn how to master and improve our knowledge of our own capabilities and others is to practice
it. There is obviously a link between the structure of our brain and our behaviors. The difference is
not only in the behavior but also in the way we see the world and understand things. Each person
can have a different version of the same fact because of a difference is the part of the brain used.
This gap is even more obvious when confronting men and womens opinions. We live different lives
because not exposed to the same problems but also because our brains work differently.
All of this differences in brain functioning implies difference in the ways to motivate people.
The mechanism of motivation is similar from an individual to another, even between men and
women. The difference is the importance we give to our different kind of needs and the different
vision we have of our lives. The best leaders and managers know that and how to deal with it. The
problem is that there is often little time for taking care of everyone in an organization. Therefore, a
global framework for generating motivation has to be established. It has to be flexible and allow
people to make their own choices. A whole company cant be led the same way; there are too many
differences between each people. Globally, the mechanism of motivation and the different elements
concerning needs we talked about are true. It just varies from one person to another.
All the leadership styles and other elements we saw in the last part are complementary and
should be all used judiciously depending on the people, the situation and the nature of the task.
Remember that leadership is not all about technics and methods but also about emotional
competencies. Leadership is something which has to be learned by practicing it with people and
wont come out only from reading a book and learning techniques (still, this is needed to start and
improve leadership skills).
Also, this knowledge of leadership has to be used with what we learned about motivation
and the human brain. All of this is linked together and can produce great results if used properly.


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VII. Recommendations
My most important recommendation is to go find more information to complete all what we
saw in this paper. Other lectures are necessary to complete this knowledge. You shouldnt look for an
easy solution, a magic formula or any simple way to be always right. There is no such thing because
people are different and situations are different you have to adapt to it.
Then, I recommend using the first part of this paper to analyze constantly our own and
others behaviors and ways of thinking. It is very interesting to realize how our different types of
capabilities, intelligences and needs can affect our life. It also greatly helps developing them.
Categorizing them enables us to decide to develop certain types of capabilities according to what we
want or need. The different kinds of needs are vital for understanding ourselves better and unlocking
our different functions.
The part dedicated to motivation is fundamental for a manager willing to motivate teams and
also to find ways to motivated ourselves. We can use it to find why we lack motivation for doing
something in particular. Use each sub section to analyze each case you are confronted to, whether
you are trying to motivate people or you are the one to motivate.
The leadership is more an art than a science. Methods are useful and rational thinking is
necessary but only practicing it over and over will lead to great results. A static leadership style wont
work so dont try to find one best solution but the best solution at the moment.
Globally, all this knowledge has to be used together and practicing is very important. It is
mostly by practicing that we will develop our different competences. The more you use a certain
competence the more it improves.
Use this knowledge to understand and improve both yourself AND others. Dont use it for
manipulating them to reach your own interests, to take advantage of them. Indeed, by knowing
better the way we behave many will think about manipulation (which can be either positive or
negative depending on what you do).


VIII. Bibliography | Books | The leadership styles 93

VIII. Bibliography
A. Books
Nicole Haubert, Diriger et Motiver Eyrolles Edition.
Daniel Goleman, Richard Boyatzis and annie McKee, Primal leadership Harvard Business Review
B. Images
C. Websites

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