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Hanne, reading on Cloud 9

Avid book reader. Lover of fantasy, contemporary fiction, short stories and non-fiction. This blog is a work in progress - and it will likely always be that way.

Eight motivational challenges, by Heidi Grant Halvorson

The 8 Motivational Challenges - Heidi Grant Halvorson

This is a 50 page introduction to the topic of motivation. Its size is a bit peculiar: 50 pages is remarkably short to go in depth, and yet remarkably long for those who might need info on this topic but don’t like to read.

Generally speaking there are many elements in the book that I liked. There were things I recognized and that got me thinking about my own and others’ behaviours, both when I am highly motivated and what changed when I am not.
It’s very true that people cannot be motivated the same way, and that there’s no one-size-fits-all. I thought her division in Be-Good versus Get-Better and Promotional versus Prevention focus was spot-on, and it was interesting to look at others with that mindset.

And yet there were a few things that baffled me a bit: some structural things, like having an explanation about 8 different profiles and a prognosis where most of the profiles are called ‘disastrous’ or ‘problematic’. At that point there is no advice on how to motivate them. That only comes afterwards.
The content is there so it’s not a major problem, but while reading I actually started wondering why the subtitle reads ‘A Short Guide to Lighting a Fire Under Anyone’ when the majority of profiles are considered disastrous and problematic and it looked like she wouldn’t tackle them at all for that particular reason.

Secondly, with some of the language used, I also felt that this book was very focused on motivating others, and not really yourself. I doubt most of us want to think about ourselves as underperformers, problematic or a stick-in the-mud (no matter how accurate that perhaps might be).

Net, for a short guide this was an interesting introduction – Heidi Grant Halvorson got me thinking about this topic and she created interest to check out her other work. But unfortunately, it wasn’t a home run either. It was ok, but it wasn't what I had expected.