Extrinsic and intrinsic motivation for capacity development

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  • By Khin Maung Oo
  • We commonly use the words—motivate, motivation, motivated and self-motivated. In fact, every one of us is concerned with these words. Motivate means “To be the reason why somebody does something or behave in a particular way.” And, dictionaries define that motivate means —to make somebody want to do something, especially something that involves hard work and effort. The two definitions seem to be different but reasons push us to do something. A desire is conceived in us, pushing us to fulfill our desire. Though being free from anyone’s encouragement or force, the desire pushes us to do it. It is our intrinsic motivation. Sometimes, we have to do something due to force exerted on us by someone or incentives given to us. Then, this kind may be called extrinsic motivation.
    As regards the ceremony issuing the strategy on reform of staff in Myanmar—Global Study on Intrinsic Motivation in Developing Countries, was held at the Myanmar International Convention Center (2) in Nay Pyi Taw, with a view to upgrading confidence, concepts and staff morale in developing countries, on July 11.By seeing its name, we easily come to know that intrinsic motivation is of great importance. All human beings already have intrinsic motivations. We ourselves and outsiders related to us need to instigate, develop and recognize others. In most cases, we cannot do a one-man show to bring about change. In running a business, managing an institution or building up a nation, we need to pay attention to intrinsic and extrinsic motivations—the very basis of capacity development.
    At such a time when we are marching towards an advanced and modern federal democratic republic under the leadership of our elected government, we need more and more self-motivated nation builders. The State is also implementing many projects such as housing estate projects for low-income earners including government personnel. And, arrangements are being made to provide low-income earners and workers with fringe benefits. These are, in fact, extrinsic motivations. Some make concerted efforts by contributing their labor in building up the nation, to the best of their ability of their own accords, not to mention gaining monetary subsidies. Yet, I dare say no one would reject recognition of their good deeds—prize, praise and publicized acknowledgement. Hence, the State Counsellor herself releases a letter of acknowledgement every month for the person worthy of congratulations. This will be the most powerful tonic for the public. While I am at it, I would like to say that “the Carrot and stick approach will be helpful for our honest and hard-working population to encourage them to try their best. This is a good example of extrinsic motivation.
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