- to provide with a motive, or a cause or reason to act; incite; impel.
Origin of motivate
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
induce, move, provoke, prompt, cause.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for motivator
While his health was a motivator, many also speculate he did it with an eye on a future presidential run.Should We Judge Hillary’s Hair or Christie’s Weight?
January 6, 2014
That goes a long way here in South Carolina and could trump party loyalty as a motivator.South Carolina Special Election Has All the Makings of a Scandal-Filled Telenovela
April 3, 2013
Reputational harm may be more of a motivator than the sanctions.Where Modern Slavery Thrives: State Department Unveils Trafficking Report
June 19, 2012
I'm sure those are both on the table, but when someone is sitting on nine digits, that kind of package isn't a motivator.AOL Buys Huffington Post: Arianna Cashes Out
February 7, 2011
- (tr) to give incentive to
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Word Origin and History for motivator
1917, agent noun in Latin form from motivate (v.).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper