carrot-and-stick

adjective
car·​rot-and-stick | \ ˌker-ət-ᵊn-ˈstik How to pronounce carrot-and-stick (audio) , ˌka-rət- \

Definition of carrot-and-stick

: characterized by the use of both reward and punishment to induce cooperation carrot-and-stick foreign policy the carrot-and-stick style of sales management

First Known Use of carrot-and-stick

1876, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for carrot-and-stick

from the traditional alternatives of driving a donkey on by either holding out a carrot or whipping it with a stick

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about carrot-and-stick

Time Traveler for carrot-and-stick

Time Traveler

The first known use of carrot-and-stick was in 1876

See more words from the same year

Statistics for carrot-and-stick

Cite this Entry

“Carrot-and-stick.” The Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/carrot-and-stick. Accessed 18 January 2020.

More from Merriam-Webster on carrot-and-stick

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with carrot-and-stick

Comments on carrot-and-stick

What made you want to look up carrot-and-stick? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

experienced by way of someone else

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Eponym Quiz

  • rubens painting
  • Which is the best synonym of bowdlerize?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!