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Leadership Without Excuses: How to Create Accountability and High-Performance (Instead of Just Talking About It) by Jeff Grimshaw

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CHAPTER 6REWARD WHAT YOU WANT TO SEE MORE OF . . . AND STOP TOLERATING WHAT YOU DON’T

Whether dealing with monkeys, rats, or human beings,” management professor Steven Kerr wrote in 1975, “it is hardly controversial to state that most organisms seek information concerning what activities are rewarded and then seek to do (or at least pretend to do) these things, often to the virtual exclusion of activities not rewarded.” The implication? If you want your people to do some particular thing, that’s the thing you’d better reward. It’s folly, Kerr said, to “reward A while hoping for B.”1

But three decades later, the problem persists, as Kerr observes in his latest book.2 Organizations want long-term performance, he notes, but they reward employees ...

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