6 Sources Of Intrinsic Motivation That eLearning Pros Should Consider
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Sources Of Intrinsic Motivation: 6 Points eLearning Pros Should Consider

Intrinsic motivation mainly deals with internal rewards. For instance, if you poll your corporate learners about what motivated them to sign up, you’ll get a variety of answers. Some will say that they joined to upskill or fulfill their potential. Others will admit that it’s all about the recognition of earning the online certification. The reason given by the first group is an example of intrinsic motivation. All eLearning pros can use this powerful source of motivation to make their corporate eLearning courses appealing and effective. Here are 6 ways to use intrinsic motivation to your corporate learners’ advantage.

1. Challenge Corporate Learners

People love it when they get to test their mettle and overcome a challenge. Ensure that the online training deliverables cater to corporate learners’ personal interests and that the type of learning goals you set for them take them out of their comfort zone. It is human nature that when things are challenging, they are more meaningful. Thus, the urge to achieve them is intensified. You should, however, stir clear of online training activities that make your audience feel defeated. Hard tasks kill motivation while challenging ones build intrinsic motivation. To ensure that you motivate your corporate learners, set the activities' difficulty level a bit higher than where it stands now. As a result, they feel as though they have accomplished something they can be proud of.

Conversely, those who fail to complete the task are more likely to learn from their mistakes when you incorporate the perfect amount of challenge instead of being discouraged by a task that was far above their experience level. The intrinsic motivation here will come from their urge to want to prove that they can succeed. You need to do intensive research on your audience to ensure that they can overcome the challenges you set for them. You also need to identify skill sets and create online training activities that are difficult enough to hold their interest.

2. Find Ways To Work Their Curiosity

Curiosity is an innate human trait. It plays a critical role in intrinsic motivation because learners are drawn to seek out answers and discover the meaning. For example, how something works or why certain behaviors elicit certain responses. However, it is important that you understand the two types of curiosity: cognitive and sensory. You must consider exposing your audience to visual elements that work to direct their attention. It is critical to explore audio and visual stimulations that encourage them to actively participate in the online training process. Cognitive curiosity mainly comes into play when online training activities require individuals to learn more. It makes it easy to accept new ideas, even ideas that they may not necessarily agree with. Ensure that the audience is learning by engaging their critical thinking and make the most of their creativity through active problem-solving.

3. Encourage Teamwork

Regardless of their different personalities, one thing is clear; people love helping others overcome challenges. This helps to increase intrinsic motivation and cater to altruistic tendencies. It is even better when your trainees can compare their performance to that of their colleagues. In the process, they may even discover something new about themselves. For example, uncover hidden talents they never knew they had or challenge their own assumptions. Thus, you should encourage your audience to participate in online discussions and provide peer-based feedback. Allow them to express their concerns and share experiences.

4. Give Them Control

People love to feel that they are in control. This is one of the most powerful intrinsic motivation sources that can be used in online training. You need to make your audience feel that they have control over the process and that their input will affect the outcome. One of the best ways to hold them accountable and give them more L&D responsibilities is to create personalized online training paths. Corporate learners are able to choose how and when they access the information. They can also focus on their own areas for improvement, which taps into the power of fulfilling one’s potential - another key motivator.

5. Lead Them To A Personal Pursuit Of Knowledge

The thirst for knowledge is yet another source of intrinsic motivation to consider. Some corporate learners are simply looking to expand their knowledge base and quench the thirst. They don’t have any specific goals in mind except for exploring the subject matter and learning something new about themselves or the world. Therefore, you should give them every opportunity to build their knowledge base, with the help of supplemental online training tools and ongoing support, such as online discussions where they can “pick the brains” of their peers or microlearning online training repositories that introduce them to related topics.

6. Note Their Accomplishments

Even the most experienced corporate learners need a pat on the back from time to time. Particularly when they have outperformed their peers or achieved a notable milestone. Provide immediate feedback that highlights their strengths. Offer personalized praise, or provide badges or certificates of achievements to show your recognition. These rewards may walk the fine line between intrinsic and extrinsic motivation, but they’re a great way to bridge the gap until corporate learners’ internal drive kicks in.

Finding the right motivation factors that will make your audience receptive is the key to online training success. You need to find the right fuel to drive their ambitions in order to keep them engaged. Once you’ve determined their primary sources of intrinsic motivation, you can unlock their true potential, as well as achieve the desired learning outcomes and improve your eLearning ROI.

Now that you know how to utilize intrinsic motivation in your eLearning course design, would you like to see the other side of the coin? Read the article Extrinsic Motivation In Online Training to discover the basics of extrinsic motivation, as well as tips on how to add extrinsic motivation elements in your online training course.

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