I recall learning in some MBA management course that money does not motivate; only large sums of money motivate. (That might explain some of the problems with the US economy: highly paid executives are motivated to make even more, while average workers remain locked in a downward spiral.) I guess that the point they were trying to instill was that workers could not be driven with pennies; fear of losing one’s job works better.
That maxim may or may not be true in business, but it is true in everyday life. In Florida, I could not help noticing huge billboards on bleak stretches of the interstate announcing incremental increases in the Powerball jackpot. Once the sum passed $80 million, I asked myself: “Why not?” The chance of winning might be slim, but it is non-existent if one does not try. And, $1 is a reasonable price to pay for so many millions.
I did not win…
…which might not be a bad result. First, because it would mean avoiding another trip to Florida—Tallahassee, of all places—to present the winning ticket. And, on top of that, I would not have to figure out what to do with the bloody money. I enjoy a comfortable, simple life and have learned to get by with what we have. At this stage, I am not good with decisions and do not need complications…which a vast sum of money would cause. Some might claim that money means freedom, but that is not always true.( Or, the preceding sentences are just one big rationalization to hide my disappointment!)
There is a saying in German: Glück in der Lieb,; Pech im Spiel. (Happiness in love, no luck in gambling). I’ll take the former over the latter any day of this life. Still, that does not mean that money motivates me, on occasion, to try something foolish…
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.