BoredToDeath: Daniel Pink has worked on this; as far as he can tell, dangling conditional money at people makes then solve open problems worse. If that's what middle managers are doing, then they're destructive of the thing that they allegedly want.
Apathy bound to vague objectives is needed to maintain the proper level of confusion at a company's lower levels so no one has the faintest idea what is going on at the higher levels. Not that THEY do either - how is it possible for so many companies in this country to continue to exist??