You're Invited—A Seminar on Identifying Core Motivational Drives
A live event with Dr. Joshua Miller and Luke Burgis on February 24, 2022, 6pm EST
#1: Zoom Event with Dr. Joshua Miller on Finding Your Core Motivational Drivers
On February 24 at 6pm EST, I’ll be hosting a Zoom seminar with Dr. Joshua Miller, one of the lead developers of the Motivational Code assessment (described in Chapter 6 of Wanting).
Please register here if interested. Space is limited. The event is free for premium subscribers—scroll all the way to the bottom of this newsletter to find your discount code. Otherwise, the cost is $10.
It will be helpful if you’ve already taken the assessment, but it’s not necessary to join. The event will be an introductory learning session, and I’ll be sharing a bit of my own motivational profile and explain how it comes into play when I’m doing anything from writing a book to working out.
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As many of you know by now, I’m a proponent of an exercise in narrative psychology called the MCODE (Motivation Code), developed by my friends at Pruvio.
I’ve been using it in interviews for over a decade. It has been particularly helpful to me in understanding how founders and executive teams work best together—or how to put them together in the first place.
I’ve learned that I can’t just throw a handful of smart, highly motivated people in a room together and expect them to work well. How each of them is uniquely motivated is vital. Unfortunately, few understand how they are specifically motivated; when I ask, I usually get extremely vague answers. Even fewer know how to identify the core motivational drives of others. The MCODE changes that.
The assessment goes back to Arthur Miller Jr.’s work in the early 1960’s, when he began to develop something called the System for Identifying Motivated Abilities (SIMA). Miller began asking people to tell him stories about times in their life when they were deeply satisfied about an achievement. After conducting an extensive biographical interview, a pattern began to emerge about the kinds of activities that they consistently gravitated toward. Approximately 100,000 interviews later— and after having assembled a team of researchers, including PhD’s in psychology and data scientists—they identified 27 distinct “motivational patterns” or themes, which I’ve listed below. Do any of them sound like you?
By understanding which of these core motivational themes have been most present in your life, you gain a powerful insight into how to be more fully engaged.
The 27 Motivational Themes
Achieve Potential: Identifying and realizing potential is a constant focus of your activities.
Advance: You love the experience of making progress as you accomplish a series of goals
Be Unique: You seek to distinguish yourself by displaying some talent, quality or aspect that is distinctive and special
Be Central: You are motivated to be a key person who holds things together and gives them meaning and/or direction.
Bring Control: You want to be in charge and in control of your own destiny.
Bring to Completion: Your motivation is satisfied when you can look at a finished product or final result and know that your work is done and that you have met the objective you set out to accomplish.
Comprehend and Express: Your motivation focuses on understanding, defining, and then communicating your insights.
Collaborate: You enjoy being involved in efforts in which people work together for a common purpose.
Demonstrate New Learning: You are motivated to learn how to do something new and show that you can do it
Develop: You are motivated by the process of building and developing from start to finish.
Evoke Recognition: You are motivated to capture the interest and attention of others.
Experience the Ideal: You are motivated to give concrete expression to certain concepts, visions, or values that are important to you
Establish: You are motivated to lay secure foundations and to be established.
Explore: Pressing beyond the existing limits of your knowledge and/or experience, you explore what is unknown or mysterious to you.
Excel: You want to excel or at least to do your absolute best as you exceed the performance or expectations of those around you.
Gain Ownership: The nature of your motivation is expressed through efforts to acquire what you want and to exercise ownership or control over what is yours.
Improve: You are happiest when you are using your abilities to make things better.
Influence Behavior: You are motivated to gain a reaction or response from people that indicates you have influenced their thinking, feelings and behavior.
Make an Impact: You seek to make an impact or personal mark upon the world around you.
Make It Right: You consistently set up or follow standards, procedures and principles that you believe are “right.”
Make It Work: Your motivation focuses on fixing something that has broken down or is functioning poorly.
Make the Grade: You are motivated to make the grade and gain acceptance into a group in which you want to be a member or participant.
Master: Your motivation is satisfied when you are able to gain complete command of a skill, subject, procedure, technique, or process.
Meet the Challenge: Your sense of achievement comes in looking back over a challenge you have met or a test you have passed.
Organize: You want to set up and maintain a smooth-running operation
Overcome: Your motivation focuses on overcoming and winning out over difficulties, disadvantages, or opposition.
Serve: You are motivated to identify and fulfill needs, requirements, and expectations.
How To Get Started
If you’d like to complete the MCODE exercise, you can start the process here. (A $10 off code is available at the link above, which drops the price from $49 to $39). Once you start, the process takes roughly 30-45 minutes. Again, it’s not necessary to have completed the assessment to attend the event on February 24.
I do recommend that, prior to taking the full assessment, you spend some time identifying your three “Fulfillment Stories.” I put together this worksheet to help you do that. The more time you spend discerning which three stories from your life are most important, the more meaningful the exercise becomes. If they come to right away, though, then great—run with those.