Organic and Inorganic Motivation


Recently I attended a marriage and since I was from dulha side, I was a privileged baraati 🙂 A few people were dancing with the band and intermittently trying to convince others (including me) to join them. A few of them were dancing with full energy and were visibly excited but few others were just standing and slowly moving their hands and feet and some were just walking along with baraat. One could classify the baraatis into 3 categories.

  1. Those who were genuinely excited and enjoying every bit of the moment.
  2. Those who were dancing only because they had no other option as they were unable to resist. (I would fit in here)
  3. Those who were neutral (or indifferent) and were just hoping that the baraat reaches the destination at the earliest.

Clearly, I can say that baraati classified as type 1 were highly motivated to dance in the baraat. Baraati classified as type 2 were probably poorly motivated or not motivated and type 3 were definitely not at all motivated. So, what is the reason some people are highly motivated to carry out a specific task and some are apparently poorly or not at all motivated? A trivial observation in a typical baraat and possibly most of you can relate to one of these 3 types when in similar situation. Further, it’s a no-brainer to figure out the reason behind high motivation of type 1 baraatis. However this trivial observation kept me awake for a couple of hours even though I was pretty much tired after returning from the marriage function.

And this led to my discovery of 2 types of motivation – Organic Motivation and Inorganic Motivation. Later when I Googled the terms, I realized these terms pre-exist … WHAT THE HECK!!! Nevertheless, since I spent couple of hours thinking about this, it deserves at least a blog post 🙂

Let’s go back to where we started – Type 1 baraatis. They were looking very excited, visibly happy and enjoying more than the other 2 types. The reason for that lies in organic and inorganic motivation. Type 1 people were either motivated organically or inorganically or probably both. Now you must be muttering … enough of this organic/non-organic BS, what do they mean after all?? Here you go.

Organic Motivation: If you are motivated enough and don’t need any external force to carry out a task then you are organically motivated. For example, dulha’s brother, his best friend(s), some of his dear cousins probably do not need any external motivation to dance in the baraat as they are happy deep inside .. for their brother, friend, cousin or whatever the relationship might be. Another very good example of inorganic motivation are entrepreneurs. True entrepreneurs are organically motivated and typically don’t need any external motivation (peers, customers, VC/Angels etc) to do their job.

Inorganic Motivation: Fair enough, but how do you explain the motivation of those who too were looking equally excited and dancing in the baraat with full energy but didn’t have any close relationship to the dulha? Alright, so this is where inorganic motivation comes into picture. People can be motivated inorganically as well. Some of the type 1 baraatis were under the influence of alcohol. Do I need to say more? It can also be explained in terms of pay hikes, rewards, recognition and the stuff which company bestows on you to (inorganically) motivate you.

Now when you have mastered the concepts of organic and inorganic movitation, here is a question for you 🙂

Question: There could be some people in the baraat who are neither close of dulha nor under influence of alcohol but could still be classified as type 1. Why? May be because they just love dancing and there could be some who do not want to miss any opportunity to show off (impress girls). Now what do you think – Are these people organically motivated or inorganically motivated?? Keep thinking and if you find an answer, leave your response as comment.

One friendly advise – If you need inorganic motivation to do your job then you probably shouldn’t be doing it. Find a job which organically motivates you. Unfortunately this is easier said than done!