There are many ways to influence people’s behavior, and the best strategy is to incorporate multiple pathways. In order to change, people must have both the motivation and the ability to do so. Social and environmental factors are often overlooked.
One of my favorite books on creating change within an organization is Influencer: The Power to Change Anything. Co-author Joseph Grenny has an interesting piece in Business Week titled “How Incentives Can Undermine Your Influence.” It looks at the ways that trying to use simple “carrots and sticks” as motivators can actually backfire.