Motivation of software professionals

Discussion in 'C Programming' started by Stefan Kiryazov, Feb 5, 2010.

  1. Hi all,

    I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    popularity, etc.

    As a part of the research, I am doing an online survey for software
    engineers and managers in software development. It takes just several
    minutes and filling it is a good opportunity to share your opinion
    about the motivation practices being used in the software industry
    today:
    http://ask.wizefish.com/en/MotivationSurvey.aspx

    Anyone who does the survey and leaves any contacts will be sent the
    results.

    Also, if someone is running a web site or blog dedicated to any aspect
    of software development we can do some link exchange.

    Regards,
    Stefan Kiryazov
    Stefan Kiryazov, Feb 5, 2010
    #1
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  2. On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    > Hi all,
    >
    > I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    > the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    > their popularity, etc.


    Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    money, and money is very popular.

    > As a part of the research, I am doing an online survey for
    > software engineers and managers in software development.

    <snip>

    This would be more convincing as an academic exercise, as opposed to,
    say, spam intended to encourage visitors to some web page with the
    intention of gaining advertising revenue, if there were not so many
    advertisements on the page.

    In any event, your survey needs the addition of a large number of
    "This question makes no sense" option checkboxes, as it is
    unanswerable as it is.

    Richard.
    Richard Cornford, Feb 5, 2010
    #2
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  3. Stefan Kiryazov

    Jeff Gaines Guest

    On 05/02/2010 in message
    <> Stefan
    Kiryazov wrote:

    >I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    >most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    >popularity, etc.


    M O N E Y

    --
    Jeff Gaines Dorset UK
    I can please only one person per day. Today is not your day.
    Tomorrow, isn't looking good either.
    Jeff Gaines, Feb 5, 2010
    #3
  4. Stefan Kiryazov

    Erwin Moller Guest

    Stefan Kiryazov schreef:
    > Hi all,
    >
    > I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    > most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    > popularity, etc.
    >
    > As a part of the research, I am doing an online survey for software
    > engineers and managers in software development. It takes just several
    > minutes and filling it is a good opportunity to share your opinion
    > about the motivation practices being used in the software industry
    > today:
    > http://ask.wizefish.com/en/MotivationSurvey.aspx
    >
    > Anyone who does the survey and leaves any contacts will be sent the
    > results.
    >
    > Also, if someone is running a web site or blog dedicated to any aspect
    > of software development we can do some link exchange.
    >
    > Regards,
    > Stefan Kiryazov



    I am in this business so I can fill in online questionaires.

    Erwin Moller


    --
    "There are two ways of constructing a software design: One way is to
    make it so simple that there are obviously no deficiencies, and the
    other way is to make it so complicated that there are no obvious
    deficiencies. The first method is far more difficult."
    -- C.A.R. Hoare
    Erwin Moller, Feb 5, 2010
    #4
  5. Stefan Kiryazov

    Mick Guest

    Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    > Hi all,
    >
    > I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    > most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    > popularity, etc.
    >
    > As a part of the research, I am doing an online survey for software
    > engineers and managers in software development. It takes just several
    > minutes and filling it is a good opportunity to share your opinion
    > about the motivation practices being used in the software industry
    > today:
    > http://ask.wizefish.com/en/MotivationSurvey.aspx
    >
    > Anyone who does the survey and leaves any contacts will be sent the
    > results.
    >
    > Also, if someone is running a web site or blog dedicated to any aspect
    > of software development we can do some link exchange.
    >
    > Regards,
    > Stefan Kiryazov

    Gotta pay the bills!
    Mick, Feb 5, 2010
    #5
  6. Richard Cornford <> writes:

    > On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    >> Hi all,
    >>
    >> I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    >> the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    >> their popularity, etc.

    >
    > Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    > money, and money is very popular.


    Whilst people like money, it's not necessary the most efficient
    motivator. Developers also like interesting, challenging, varied work,
    work with new technologies, flexible hours, freedom to do what they feel
    is technically best without being hampered by management dictat and many
    other things.

    Anthony
    --
    Author of C++ Concurrency in Action http://www.stdthread.co.uk/book/
    just::thread C++0x thread library http://www.stdthread.co.uk
    Just Software Solutions Ltd http://www.justsoftwaresolutions.co.uk
    15 Carrallack Mews, St Just, Cornwall, TR19 7UL, UK. Company No. 5478976
    Anthony Williams, Feb 5, 2010
    #6
  7. Stefan Kiryazov

    JR Guest

    On Feb 5, 9:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov <> wrote:
    > Hi all,
    >
    > I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    > most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    > popularity, etc.
    >
    > As a part of the research, I am doing an online survey for software
    > engineers and managers in software development. It takes just several
    > minutes and filling it is a good opportunity to share your opinion
    > about the motivation practices being used in the software industry
    > today:http://ask.wizefish.com/en/MotivationSurvey.aspx
    >
    > Anyone who does the survey and leaves any contacts will be sent the
    > results.
    >
    > Also, if someone is running a web site or blog dedicated to any aspect
    > of software development we can do some link exchange.


    I suggest reading about the "Two Factor theory of emotion", also known
    as "Herzberg's motivation-hygiene theory". I studied this concept in
    1984 for the first time, and I think it is still acceptable today.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Two-factor_theory

    Cheers,
    JR
    JR, Feb 5, 2010
    #7
  8. In article
    <>,
    Stefan Kiryazov <> wrote:

    > I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    > most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    > popularity, etc.


    [...]

    This reminds me of "Drescher and the toaster":

    A disciple of another sect once came to Drescher as he was
    eating his morning meal.

    “I would like to give you this personality testâ€, said the
    outsider, “because I want you to be happy.â€

    Drescher took the paper that was offered him and put it into
    the toaster, saying: “I wish the toaster to be happy, too.â€

    <http://catb.org/jargon/html/koans.html#id3141308>

    --
    John B. Matthews
    trashgod at gmail dot com
    <http://sites.google.com/site/drjohnbmatthews>
    John B. Matthews, Feb 5, 2010
    #8
  9. Stefan Kiryazov

    John Bode Guest

    On Feb 5, 6:39 am, Anthony Williams <> wrote:
    > Richard Cornford <> writes:
    > > On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    > >> Hi all,

    >
    > >> I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    > >> the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    > >> their popularity, etc.

    >
    > > Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    > > money, and money is very popular.

    >
    > Whilst people like money, it's not necessary the most efficient
    > motivator. Developers also like interesting, challenging, varied work,
    > work with new technologies, flexible hours, freedom to do what they feel
    > is technically best without being hampered by management dictat and many
    > other things.
    >


    This is definitely true for me; I will trade some pay for more
    interesting work or a better working environment, at least up to a
    point.
    John Bode, Feb 5, 2010
    #9
  10. Stefan Kiryazov

    Wojtek Guest

    Patricia Shanahan wrote :
    > Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    >> Hi all,
    >>
    >> I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    >> most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    >> popularity, etc.

    > ...
    >
    > I don't qualify as a software professional now, but I did work in the
    > computer industry for 32 years.
    >
    > In my experience, software professionals are people, each with their own
    > motivations. Assuming everyone has the same motivations is a basic
    > leadership error.
    >
    > That said, by definition professionals are, to some extent, in it for
    > the money. If they were not, they would be amateurs as I am now. How
    > that is balanced against interesting work, physical working conditions,
    > status, etc. varies.


    Hmmm, I have seen "professionals" who should be escorted out by
    security. And then people who do it for personal satisfaction who
    produce excellent code.

    The FOSS movement has a mix of these two groups.

    Being a professional is a state of mind rather than renumeration.

    But yes, I like to eat too....

    --
    Wojtek :)
    Wojtek, Feb 5, 2010
    #10
  11. Stefan Kiryazov

    Walter Banks Guest

    Stefan Kiryazov wrote:

    > I am doing a research about motivation in software development, the
    > most efficient practices to motivate software engineers, their
    > popularity, etc.


    Watching it all come together in a project after 40 years still
    has the same excitement. I resigned from a good job 30 years
    ago to program again as a career telling colleges at the time
    that I may never work again but I am playing 50 or 60 hours
    a week at something I love to do.

    Regards,


    w..
    --
    Walter Banks
    Byte Craft Limited
    http://www.bytecraft.com
    Walter Banks, Feb 5, 2010
    #11
  12. "Anthony Williams" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Richard Cornford <> writes:
    >
    >> On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    >>> Hi all,
    >>>
    >>> I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    >>> the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    >>> their popularity, etc.

    >>
    >> Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    >> money, and money is very popular.

    >
    > Whilst people like money, it's not necessary the most efficient
    > motivator. Developers also like interesting, challenging, varied work,
    > work with new technologies, flexible hours, freedom to do what they feel
    > is technically best without being hampered by management dictat and many
    > other things.
    >


    OTOH, many programmers may also despise anything "new" or "different", or
    anything which may effect "the way things usually are".

    give them something new, and they will resist, like "this is not how I
    usually do things", ...

    it would be like, in a college, them adding soap dispensers all over the
    walls in the hallways.
    then, this is unsettling, since it is well known that soap dispensers are
    properly placed in the bathrooms, and so what are they doing in the
    hallways?...

    likewise, many may like a well-defined heirarchy of authority,
    strong-seeming authority figures, and the sense of "excitement" over the
    volumes of work being produced (measurable via metrics like money, units
    sold, kloc written, completing various items on various agendas, ...), ...


    and, granted, other people may not like this...

    they might dislike, for example, being expected to stand and greet the boss
    whenever he enters the room, waiting for him either to say something
    relevant or to tell them all to carry on, ...

    other people may also not like attending meetings for the sake of debating
    over agenda items, deciding on matters of policy, ...

    so, it may all depend a lot on the person (and/or, the personality types of
    the people involved...).
    BGB / cr88192, Feb 5, 2010
    #12
  13. On 5 Feb., 13:23, Richard Cornford <>
    wrote:
    > On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    >
    > > Hi all,

    >
    > > I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    > > the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    > > their popularity, etc.

    >
    > Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    > money, [...]


    This was proven wrong by Science. Read Bruce Eckels excellent blog
    entries about this topic, he always references relliable sources on
    this subject.
    MarkusSchaber, Feb 5, 2010
    #13
  14. Richard Cornford wrote:

    > On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    >> I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    >> the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    >> their popularity, etc.

    >
    > Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    > money, and money is very popular.


    That would mean that the more you are paid, the more motivated you are,
    which is obviously wrong. Money is only part of the equation. Money is a
    factor of motivation in capitalism only because of the things that money can
    buy, and which it means to others. But those things can be gained without
    money as well, so you would probably be equally motivated if someone
    provides them for work you have done. See, e.g., Maslow's hierarchy of
    needs.


    F'up2 poster

    PointedEars
    --
    var bugRiddenCrashPronePieceOfJunk = (
    navigator.userAgent.indexOf('MSIE 5') != -1
    && navigator.userAgent.indexOf('Mac') != -1
    ) // Plone, register_function.js:16
    Thomas 'PointedEars' Lahn, Feb 5, 2010
    #14
  15. Stefan Kiryazov

    Tom Anderson Guest

    On Fri, 5 Feb 2010, Richard Cornford wrote:

    > On Feb 5, 11:19 am, Stefan Kiryazov wrote:
    >
    >> I am doing a research about motivation in software development,
    >> the most efficient practices to motivate software engineers,
    >> their popularity, etc.

    >
    > Strange question; the most efficient motivator of professionals is
    > money, and money is very popular.


    There's a robust body of work that suggests this is very much *not* the
    case. Money motivates some people; technical people are more motivated by
    interesting work and respect from their colleagues.

    tom

    --
    It is a formal cultural policy to show unreasonable bias towards any
    woman who is both attractive and weird.
    Tom Anderson, Feb 5, 2010
    #15
  16. Stefan Kiryazov

    Stefan Ram Guest

    Stefan Kiryazov <> writes:
    >http://ask.wizefish.com/en/MotivationSurvey.aspx


    This survey has a strong selection bias:

    Real professionals are motivated by the money.

    But those motivated by money will not attend
    the survey as they are not being paid for it.
    Stefan Ram, Feb 5, 2010
    #16
  17. Stefan Kiryazov

    Saga Guest

    "Stefan Ram" <-berlin.de> wrote in message
    news:-berlin.de...
    > Stefan Kiryazov <> writes:
    >>http://ask.wizefish.com/en/MotivationSurvey.aspx

    >
    > This survey has a strong selection bias:
    >
    > Real professionals are motivated by the money.
    >
    > But those motivated by money will not attend
    > the survey as they are not being paid for it.


    And those not motivated by money will also not
    attend the survey because they'll think it is
    offensive, catagorizing them as "non professional"
    simply because they are not motivated by money.
    Saga
    Saga, Feb 5, 2010
    #17
  18. Stefan Kiryazov

    Tom Anderson Guest

    On Fri, 5 Feb 2010, Patricia Shanahan wrote:

    > That said, by definition professionals are, to some extent, in it for
    > the money. If they were not, they would be amateurs as I am now.


    Interesting. Do you think that all the non-financial rewards that are
    available (if rarely!) in industry are available in academia or on
    volunteer projects?

    Something i find quite enjoyable, having moved from academia into
    industry, is the sense that a project is actually doing something
    valuable, something a business thinks is worth money. Work in academia and
    the FOSS community can be very interesting, but a lot of it feels like
    farting about.

    tom

    --
    I sometimes think that the IETF is one of the crown jewels in all of
    western civilization. -- Tim O'Reilly
    Tom Anderson, Feb 5, 2010
    #18
  19. Stefan Kiryazov

    Jedrin Guest

    If money was the only motivating factor wouldn't we all want to be
    wall street bankers instead ?
    Jedrin, Feb 5, 2010
    #19
  20. Stefan Kiryazov

    Seebs Guest

    On 2010-02-05, Jedrin <> wrote:
    > If money was the only motivating factor wouldn't we all want to be
    > wall street bankers instead ?


    If we thought we could make more money at it than we could programming. I
    don't think I could. Comparative advantage ftw!

    -s
    --
    Copyright 2010, all wrongs reversed. Peter Seebach /
    http://www.seebs.net/log/ <-- lawsuits, religion, and funny pictures
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fair_Game_(Scientology) <-- get educated!
    Seebs, Feb 5, 2010
    #20
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