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carrot on a stick

A reward that is promised to someone as an incentive to complete some task. It is a variant of "carrot and stick" or "carrot or stick," which refer to both reward and punishment being simultaneously offered/threatened as an incentive to complete a task. The boss offered a 10% bonus as a carrot on a stick to whomever sold the most units by the end of the month. I always allow myself a chocolate bar as a carrot on a stick to motivate me to go to the gym each day.
See also: carrot, on, stick

carrot or stick

(hyphenated if used as a modifier before a noun) An incentivization method in which a reward and a punishment are simultaneously offered/threatened as a motivation to complete some task. It is a variant of "carrot and stick," which means the same. We use the carrot or stick as motivation at this company: you make more money if you sell more units, or your pay gets docked if you don't meet your quota. Some people like it, but I think their carrot-or-stick approach creates a dynamic of fear in employees.
See also: carrot, stick

carrot and stick

A motivational tactic that uses a reward and punishment system to encourage improved performance or behavior. Companies are slowly learning that the carrot and stick approach to management is ineffective—employees are much more motivated to do a better job when they are recognized for their hard work.
See also: and, carrot, stick


A person with red (orange) hair. I bet my future child will be a carrot-top. Red hair runs in my family.

a carrot and stick (approach)

rewards and punishments that influence someone's behavior Our company uses a carrot and stick - more money is the carrot, loss of your job is the stick.
Usage notes: used in different forms to describe different combinations of rewards and punishments: Management's proposed deal is all stick and no carrot. The latest round of peace talks offers both sides the carrot as well as the stick.
Etymology: based on the reward of a carrot (a long orange vegetable) and the punishment of using a stick to encourage a horse to move
See also: and, carrot, stick


if you use a carrot-and-stick method to make someone do something, you both offer rewards and threaten punishments (always before noun) I've had to take the carrot-and-stick approach to disciplining my kids. The harder they work, the more money they get.

a carrot-top

a person with hair that is an orange colour Joe's blond and Rosie's a carrot-top.

carrot and stick

Reward and punishment used as persuasive measures, as in Management dangled the carrot of a possible raise before strikers, but at the same time waved the stick of losing their pension benefits . This term alludes to enticing a horse or donkey to move by dangling a carrot before it and, either alternately or at the same time, urging it forward by beating it with a stick. [Late 1800s]
See also: and, carrot, stick
References in periodicals archive ?
About new machine prepared by Engineers of AMRI, has good capacity to wash nearly 25 maunds of carrots within one hour.
MULTAN -- Agriculture experts have advised farmers to complete sowing of carrot heads by first week of January to obtain seed for the next crop and should prefer T-29 variety for the purpose.
Swiss organic equivalency agreement announced in July, all Biotta juices, including the new Carrot Juice, are recognized as USDA Organic.
Carrots are easy-to-grow plants but remember this - not much fertilizer, no stones or hard soil.
No other vegetable or fruit contains as much carotene as carrots, which the body converts into vitamin A.
2 LOOK out for carrots that are brightly coloured with smooth skin because they will be the sweetest and have a long shelf life.
Since carrots will germinate in 45[degrees]F soil, I get an early start on my garden by sowing a short row of them in January, about ten weeks before my last spring frost.
Sophie Richards, by email: They say carrot fly move to carrots from wild members of the same family, like cow parsley.
Add the halved or whole baby Add the halved or whole baby carrots to a pan containing enough cold water to just cover them and add some salt.
2 CARROTS are high in anti-ageing vitamin C and are a good source of dietary fibre.
Or grow your carrots in big pots, sprinkling seed sparingly on the surface of good compost.
Though carrots often make it into the Easter feast lineup, I've never understood why.
So it was in a vaguely grumpy but pensive mood that my eye came to light quite incidentally on a stall selling carrots.
Carrots are pretty and full of flavor and nutrients.
When the government was faced with an oversupply of carrots, they tried to get rid of the excess by saying the vegetable was fed to RAF pilots to help them see in the dark during the Battle of Britain.