Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us” as Want to Read:
Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

3.94  ·  Rating details ·  77,941 ratings  ·  3,778 reviews
Forget everything you thought you knew about how to motivate people—at work, at school, at home. It's wrong. As Daniel H. Pink (author of To Sell Is Human: The Surprising Truth About Motivating Others) explains in his paradigm-shattering book Drive, the secret to high performance and satisfaction in today's world is the deeply human need to direct our own lives, to learn a ...more
Hardcover, 242 pages
Published December 29th 2009 by Riverhead Books
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Drive, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Marek Sammul It does. To an extent. Mostly focusing on motivating others.
There is even the whole second part of the book giving you straight guidelines how to…more
It does. To an extent. Mostly focusing on motivating others.
There is even the whole second part of the book giving you straight guidelines how to motivate people... I would never follow these. Not that they were wrong, but they are way too black-and-white and narrow minded.

Read the first part of the book - the overview. And then devise your own approaches.(less)
Brian Kramp I wouldn't necessarily say that, but your question makes me remember a book called "True Enough: Learning to Live in a Post-Fact Society," which isn't…moreI wouldn't necessarily say that, but your question makes me remember a book called "True Enough: Learning to Live in a Post-Fact Society," which isn't necessarily going to answer your whole question, but you might want to check it out.(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.94  · 
Rating details
 ·  77,941 ratings  ·  3,778 reviews

Sort order
Feb 03, 2011 rated it really liked it
Why am I writing this review on Goodreads, anyway? I'm not getting paid for it. There are plenty of other things I should be doing. And it's not like I have a coterie of devoted followers waiting with bated breath for my next review (in fact, the vast majority of reviews I write here get zero comments and zero "likes"). So why, then?

DRIVE has the answer. I do it for me. I do it for intrinsic reasons and thumb my nose at the world of extrinsic ones. I do it because I derive personal pleasure from
Paul Eckert
Jul 11, 2010 rated it it was ok
I can think of a few alternate titles for this book.

“The Art of Beating a Dead Horse: Your Guide to Regurgitating the Same Point in Every Chapter”

“How to Filter Years of Other People’s Research into Broad Talking Points”

“You Too Can Write a Book With At Least 25% Filler Material”

“The Fair and Balanced Guide to Selling Your Point By Avoiding Contradictory Evidence”

I jest, yet I do think the main topic of this book is important and true. I will save you the pain of reading it by stating it here: p
Ian "Marvin" Graye
From the Fictive Desk of D.J. Ian:

The End is Much More Exciting than It Was Once Upon a Time

The story of GoodBetterBestReads has really only just begun, but we have already become the world’s largest community of potential readers, book buyers and Kindle users who have star-rated a book at least once in the last 12 months.

The problem is you can’t buy a condo or a beer off the back of potential alone. We need people to buy books, and to do that we need people who can sell books.

That’s where you
This book comes with its own summary – a very handy thing:

When it comes to motivation, there’s a gap between what science knows and what business does. Our current business operating system—which is built around external, carrot-and-stick motivators—doesn’t work and often does harm. We need an upgrade. And the science shows the way. This new approach has three essential elements: (1) Autonomy—the desire to direct our own lives; (2) Mastery—the urge to get better and better
Aug 30, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
What frustrates me is the main premise has a contradiction that is never addressed. He begins the book with some research on monkeys that demonstrated an innate interest in solving puzzles. He then goes on to describe his big premise which is that we are are in the midst of a major motivational shift. First our motivation was our biological drives. Then came a period of motivation from structure and oversight. And now we want autonomy to determine our own motivation. But Pink's presentation on t ...more
Jeanette  "Astute Crabbist"
So, I listened to this entire book about motivation, and I can't figure out why I don't feel motivated to write a review. No carrot, no stick, no review.
Jan 04, 2010 rated it it was ok
Only the first chapter is necessary. The rest is repetitious and filled with soon-to-be-obsolete computer metaphors.

However, I've been thinking a lot about this book since I read it (a few weeks ago?), so two stars was perhaps a stingy rating. Everywhere I go lately, I see examples of poorly-designed systems, destined to kill people's intrinsic motivation.

I recently read "Unconditional Parenting" by Alfie Kohn. Kohn's premise is basically that rewarding and punishing children for acting in cert
Dec 30, 2009 rated it it was ok
Shelves: business, nonfiction
Some good ideas, but for once I'd like to see a book where the case studies about flexible scheduling and autonomy don't involve software companies or consultants. I'd like to see an example where they motivate DMV employees to work harder to do the same menial work, but if giving DMV employees 20% flex time for their own projects means a corresponding 20% increase in the 2 hour wait time, I'm not on board with it. I don't know why, but it bugs me when authors use software version numbers, the b ...more
Jay Connor
May 15, 2010 rated it it was ok
As a consultant, I am particularly sensitive to unhelpful jargon and the creation of distinctions without a difference. Enter "Drive." This could have been so much better. As Pink presents correctly, much of the research re human motivation IS counter-intuitive to what most of us tend to think is the best way to reward, incentivize or bribe people to act in beneficial ways. Unfortunately, Pink insists on creating such a tower of babble -- "motivation 3.0," "type-I," "ROE," "if/then contingent re ...more
May 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult-nonfiction
Reading Pink's book, I endlessly thought about teachers and what motivates us (it's NOT merit-pay) and students and what motivates them to read (it's not pizza coupons or AR points). Funny, insightful, and supported by research, Drive has far-reaching implications for our society and how we view work and the people we try to motivate.
Laura Noggle
2.5 ⭐'s rounded up to 3 — Interesting approach for a hard to nail down answer. Most relevant for employers trying to extract optimum performance from employees, parents raising children, or those with general curiosity.

We're born to be players, not pawns. We're meant to be autonomous individuals, not individual automatons.

Best predictor of success: Grit. (I actually liked Angela Duckworth's book, "Grit," a little more than this one.)

Second Law of Mastery: Mastery Is A Pain

A lot of this stuff i
Feb 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
In Drive, Daniel H. Pink suggests that there is a gap between what "science knows and what business does." I was not shocked to learn that this gap exists, and I attributed Pink's decision to emphasize the existence of this gap to what I believe is the author's drive to attract corporate speaking engagements, consultancies, and Op/Ed articles in national newspapers. If he's lucky, he could maybe land a job as a pundit. Ostensibly, Pink's purpose is to share the "surprising truth about what motiv ...more
Carrie Kellenberger
Are you the type of person that is motivated by money and fame, or are you someone that is motivated by having a larger purpose in life? Or are you a combination of both? Financial gain has always been a motivator for me, but I'm also the type of person that will take on extra work, new projects or volunteer my time simply because I like the work and it makes me feel good. It might sound crazy, but I'm not the only one. The volunteer industry is booming with people just like me who are looking f ...more
May 02, 2010 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Tomio by: Leah
Shelves: poppsych
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michael Halligan
Jan 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I imagine this is a great book to confuse those with a lot of management theory behind them. Luckily I'm not one of those, and this book has really struck home. Pink focuses begins by focusing on describing existing management processes as a carrot and stick reward system having evolved workplace of monotonous, undesirable tasks. He introduces the work of a number of social scientists and management theorists, as well as the results of their experiments both in the lab and in the work place. He ...more
May 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
This book has been on my "to read" shelf for some time, and while I had read some excerpts, understood the general ideas and seen the excellent RSA Animate excerpt (, there is far more here than is generally summed up.

This book became extremely interesting because it was juxtaposed with a discussion of Walter Isaacson's biography of Steve Jobs published shortly after his death. A coworker not known for his managerial skills but who is respected for his results read the Jobs b
Lars Guthrie
Feb 18, 2011 rated it liked it
In his essay about the spate of new books dealing with the effects of the internet on culture in a recent New Yorker (, Adam Gopnik separates observers into three camps: the Never-Betters, the Better-Nevers, and the Ever-Wasers.

Daniel Pink, as readers of his previous ‘A Whole New Mind,’ will guess, is a Never-Better type, seriously optimistic about our potential and the odds of achieving it.

While ‘Drive’ isn’t specifically about what the Internet is doi
Cath Duncan
Dec 01, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I got an early copy for the Bottom-line Bookclub. Look out for Drive on the shelves from 29 Dec.

I'm LOVING this latest book by Dan Pink. A Whole New Mind is a stroke of genius in understanding the way that the world of work has changed, and DRIVE is a powerful extension to A Whole New Mind that argues that, because of the ways that the world of work has changed, carrot-and-stick motivation is no longer effective or desirable. Instead, he explains how you can elicit a much more powerful form of m
Sep 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: business, psychology
This is another great book by Daniel Pink. It may be a coincidence, but just a few weeks ago I read another book on the same theme: Punished by Rewards: The Trouble With Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A'S, Praise, and Other Bribes by Alfie Kohn. The book by Kohn was published about 20 years earlier, and tells much the same story, in a much more scholarly, and perhaps drier style.

Daniel Pink's book, though, is much more readable, much shorter, and has a different slant. Rewards can be used to motiv
Aljazi Al-Maghlouth
Nov 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
الهدف من الكتاب هو توضيح عدم التوافق الكبير مابين ما يطرحه العلم، وخاصة علم النفس، وبين ما يقوم به الناس في قطاع الأعمال. عدم التوافق هذا في مجال عوامل التحفيز والإثارة يشكل حفرة كبير مفزعة، الجميع يكره أعمالهم ولا يرون أنها تحفيزية. المال لم يعد حافزًًا الا للبعض. العلم يوضح أن سياسات مثل سياسة العصا والجزرة، والمكافئة والعقاب، والتي نعتقد أنها طبيعية كجزء محفز للإنسان من الممكن أن يعمل بشكل حسن ولكن فقط في دائرة ظروف ضيقة. ويوضح كذلك أن سياسات مثل “اذا فعلت- فسوف تحلصل على..” هي سياسات غير مفي ...more
Fiona Leonard
Apr 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
As a homeschooling, self employed person, this book didn't come as a huge surprise, but it is one that I really enjoyed. I suspect it is because this is a book that sets down on paper what your gut has been telling you for years.

Drawing on decades of research and numerous commercial case studies, Daniel Pink unpacks and refutes the notion that the carrot and stick approach is an optimal approach to management. Pink asserts that while financial incentives may provide an initial motivational spike
Jul 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Amanda's Informal Notes:

Surprisingly, pretty darn fascinating. I don't usually read a lot of non-fiction, so it took me a bit to get used to the author's style, but I'm glad I pushed through because Drive gave me some great food for thought:

-So for hundreds of years, businesses have been modeled around the idea that people don't have any inherent motivation to work. To keep your workforce productive, you have to reward employees for good behavior (i.e. money and recognition) and punish them for
Nguyên ngộ ngộ
Cuốn sách này viết về gì?
Một cuộc cách mạng về cách cổ vũ động viên người khác trải qua 3 giai đoạn
- Hệ 1.0 - động lực sinh học: thỏa mãn được mấy nhu cầu cơ bản nhất của con người: ăn, uống, ngủ nghỉ, tình dục, lương thưởng...
- Hệ 2.0 - động lực ngoại vi: động lực kiểu "cây gậy và củ cà rốt", tốt thì thưởng, sai thì phạt
- Hệ 3.0 - động lực nội tại: xuất phát từ 3 gốc rễ: quyền tự trị, sự làm chủ, và mục đích ý nghĩa.
Cuốn sách xoay quanh những nhược điểm trong hệ 2.0 - điều gì khiến "cây gậy và
Mar 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
This book was a really exciting read, it covered research into motivational field and opinions and theories of experts in psychology and business. It is rare that a textbook type of book captions my attention so much that I don't really want to read anything else, but this one did so.

In many of the situations and models described I saw myself, my flaws and actually got motivated to change something in my life. I don't really know, how long the motivation will last though. What also helped is th
Irene McHugh
After watching Pink’s TED Talk years ago, I enthusiastically added Drive to my list of books to read. This book was such a disappointment. Watch the talk and read the first chapter. Then bail before his incessant jargon rehashing studies other researchers have conducted numbs your mind.
Chad Warner
May 14, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Chad by: Holland Chamber of Commerce
An intriguing investigation of the factors that motivate people. Pink shows that science has learned much about motivation, but business and education still follow outdated models. The old systems of rewards and punishments are no longer effective for today’s non-routine, creative, conceptual work. People need a sense of autonomy, mastery, and purpose.

Pink divides human history into three “operating systems” of motivation:
Motivation 1.0: People are driven by their biological urges: hunger, thirs
Jun 26, 2012 rated it it was ok
I think the whole book could've been wrapped up in one or two chapters. I really get what Author is trying to say and it is important that Governments, Corporations understand that not everything that their employee (or a person) does for them is because they get paid for it. In fact, I personally believe that most of us deep down do realize that point because otherwise Human Civilization would not have come as far as it has come today. (Look at any major discoveries, inventions of past few cent ...more
Mar 08, 2012 rated it did not like it
I have to confess I didn't really enjoy this book. I wanted to. I certainly enjoy the autonomy my job currently provides and am sympathetic to a book whose agenda is to propagate such.

Keyword is propagate, as this book quickly became an annoying parade of unoriginal ideas wrapped in an idealism that didn't honestly deal with the challenges of "setting your workforce free." There's been a lot of intelligent thought on human organization and motivation that isn't usefully dismissed by asserting th
د.أمجد الجنباز
يتحدث الكتاب عن طرق التحفيز الحديثة
حيث أن الطريقة القديمة تعتمد على مبدأ الثواب والعقاب، أما حديثا، فهذا الكلام لم يعد قابلا للتطبيق
ونظريات التحفيز الحديثة تعتمد بشكل أساسي على ثلاثة محاور
المحور الأول: تلقائية العمل، وهي التحفيز عن طريق ترك الشخص يعمل المهمة بالطريقة التي يفضلها والوقت الذي يريده ويختار الفريق الذي سينفذها معه
المحور الثاني: الإتقان، وفيها يعمل الشخص بهدف الحصول على العلم وتعميق اتقانه فيها
المحور الثالث: الهدف، وفيها يعمل الشخص ما يتوافق ويتساير مع أهدافه المستقبلية

إن إعطاء الموظ
Dec 10, 2012 rated it did not like it
Mediocre at best. Like many pop science writers, Pink regurgitates a bunch of other people's work and tries to put his own spin on it. Unfortunately, nothing in this book is new or even surprising, despite Pink's assertion to the contrary. Pink alternately sneers at the idea of "empowerment" then goes on to basically advocate the exact same thing.

The worst part is that the book is written in a salesman's voice. Unsurprisingly, Pink has a whole 'kit' to help people discover their own internal mot
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Defensive Driving Course Online New York 1 1 Oct 29, 2018 06:47AM  
UCAS English 10 H...: April Reading Assignment 1 3 Apr 10, 2018 01:47PM  
CMLE Librarian Pr...: * August 2017 Book: Drive 1 2 Aug 07, 2017 12:35PM  
Houston Christian...: What caused you to pick this book? 1 1 Jun 03, 2017 06:45AM  
Drive by Daniel Pink 1 9 Apr 13, 2017 06:37AM  
  • The Way We're Working Isn't Working: The Four Forgotten Needs That Energize Great Performance
  • Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard
  • Click: The Magic of Instant Connections
  • Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else
  • The Global Achievement Gap: Why Our Kids Don't Have the Skills They Need for College, Careers, and Citizenship—and What We Can Do About It
  • Who's Got Your Back: The Breakthrough Program to Build Deep, Trusting Relationships That Create Success--And Won't Let You Fail
  • The Power of Pull: How Small Moves, Smartly Made, Can Set Big Things in Motion
  • Fascinate: Unlocking the Secret Triggers of Influence, Persuasion, and Captivation
  • Adapt: Why Success Always Starts with Failure
  • Visual Meetings: How Graphics, Sticky Notes & Idea Mapping Can Transform Group Productivity
  • Disrupting Class: How Disruptive Innovation Will Change the Way the World Learns
  • The Wisdom of Crowds
  • Slide: Ology: The Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations
  • Linchpin: Are You Indispensable?
  • The Little Big Things: 163 Ways to Pursue EXCELLENCE
  • Readicide: How Schools Are Killing Reading and What You Can Do About It
  • The Cluetrain Manifesto
  • Redirect: The Surprising New Science of Psychological Change
Daniel H. Pink is the author of six provocative books — including his newest, When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing.

WHEN has spent 4 months on the New York Times bestseller list and was named a Best Book of 2018 by Amazon and iBooks.

Dan's other books include the long-running New York Times bestseller A Whole New Mind and the #1 New York Times bestsellers Drive and To Sell is Human. His
“Greatness and nearsightedness are incompatible. Meaningful achievement depends on lifting one's sights and pushing toward the horizon.” 56 likes
“The ultimate freedom for creative groups is the freedom to experiment with new ideas. Some skeptics insist that innovation is expensive. In the long run, innovation is cheap. Mediocrity is expensive—and autonomy can be the antidote.”   TOM KELLEY General Manager, IDEO” 52 likes
More quotes…