Motivation can be defined as a condition that is initiated by a physiological or psychological deficiency or need of an individual, which causes the individual to behave in a certain manner in order to achieve a particular goal or incentive. Physiological/ psychological deficiency (NEED) Achieve a particular goal (INCENTIVE) Individual behaves in a certain manner (DRIVE) Motivation consists of three interacting and interdependent elements – needs, drives and incentives. The Motivation Process
A physiological or psychological imbalance leads to the creation of a need.
Both physiological and psychological drives push an individual towards achieving a certain goal or accomplishing a certain task.
Anything that can mitigate a need and decrease the intensity of a drive is called an incentive.
CLASSIFICATION OF MOTIVES I) Primary Motives
A motive is termed as a primary motive when it satisfies both the criteria – it is not learned, and it is physiologically based. The most common primary motives are hunger, thirst, sleep, sex , avoidance of pain and maternal concern.
II) General Motives
A motive is considered to be a general motive if it is not learned, but is also not based on physiological needs.
General motives stimulate tension within the individual.
The motives of curiosity, manipulation, motive to remain active and to display affection are examples of general motives.
1)The curiosity, manipulation and activity motives The motives of curiosity, manipulation and activity are very beneficial for a person, as they often result in innovations and better ways of doing things. 2) The affection motive- for e.g. love sometimes resembles primary motive and sometimes secondary motive.
III) Secondary Motives
A secondary motive is a motive that has been learned or acquired over time.
Important secondary motives are power, achievement and affiliation. These are commonly referred as nPow, nAch and nAff .
1) The power motive
Alfred Adler , a close associate of Sigmund Freud, placed more importance on the future and a person’s drive to gain power and prove himself superior to others .
A person tries to compensate for the feelings of inferiority and also tries to fulfill his innate need for power, which is then reflected in his lifestyle.
2) The achievement motive
David C. McClelland , a Harvard psychologist, has conducted extensive research on different aspects of achievement. According to him, the achievement motive is a person’s desire to perform excellently or to handle complex or competitive situations successfully .
3) The affiliation motive
Employees, especially those at the lower levels of the organizational hierarchy, have a strong desire to belong to and be accepted by other employees or the whole group.
People with a high need for affiliation exhibit a high degree of concern for social relationships .
Managers with strong needs for affiliation tend to create congenial work environments where people enjoy working together.
4) The security motive
People try to avoid insecurity rather than attempt to achieve security .
The security motive helps individuals safeguard themselves from various unfavorable developments and avoid situations that would prevent them form reaching their goals.
5) The status motive
Status is defined as the rank a person holds relative to others within a group, organization or society .
When people are grouped together, a status hierarchy emerges.
Status refers to position or ranking of individuals in a group or organization, which may be high or low.
Status is influenced by the prevailing cultural values and the importance of different roles in society.
THE CONTENT THEORIES OF WORK MOTIVATION
The content theories of motivation attempt to identify and prioritize the needs and drives that motivate people at work.
Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs
According to this theory, once the needs at a particular level in the hierarchy of needs are satisfied, they are no longer a motivating factor .
(Challenging projects, Opportunities for innovation and creativity, training) Self actualization needs Esteem needs (Important projects, recognition, prestigious office location) Safety or Security Needs (Job security; benefits like life insurance; safety regulations) Social needs (Good coworkers, peers, superiors, customers Physiological needs ( Basis pay, workspace, heat, water, company cafeteria) A Hierarchy of Work Motivation
Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory of Motivation
Good feelings employees had about their job were related to the job content and job experiences .
Negative feelings they had about their work they related to job context factors or aspects that were not directly related to their job but which had an effect on the work environment.
Job satisfiers were associated with the job content , and job dissatisfiers were related to the job context .
The satisfiers were termed as motivators , while the dissatisfiers were termed hygiene factors.
While hygiene factors were responsible for preventing dissatisfaction , motivators were essential to keep the employees satisfied .
Contribution of Herzberg’s theory to work motivation
Herzberg considered hygiene factors to be very important for an organization to maintain its human resources; but these were not motivators .
Employees are motivated only if they have a challenging job which not only gives them an opportunity to achieve something, get recognition, advance in their careers and grow in the organization, but also allows them to handle greater responsibilities .
Important motivators are:-
a) work itself
b) clear achievable goals
c) appreciation for good work
d) giving adequate responsibilities to
e) career growth
Some important hygiene factors are:-
a) administrative policies
b) presence of able supervisors
c) fair pay
d) good interpersonal relations
e) conducive working conditions
Alderfer’s ERG Theory Alderfer recognized the importance of categorizing needs and saw that there was a definite distinction between lower-level and higher-level needs. According to Alderfer, there are three basic groups of core needs:
Existence needs (E) – These are associated with the survival and physiological well-being of an individual.
Relatedness needs (R) – These needs emphasize the significance of social and interpersonal relationships.
Growth needs (G) – These needs are related to a person’s inner desire for personal growth and development .
According to the ERG theory, a person’s background or cultural environment may cause the relatedness needs to predominate over unfulfilled existence needs.
The intensity of growth needs will increase with an increase in the degree to which they are satisfied.
THE PROCESS THEORIES OF WORK MOTIVATION
The process theories of motivation deal with the cognitive antecedents that go into motivation or effort , and more specifically, with the way the cognitive antecedents of an individual relate to one another .
Vroom’s Expectancy Theory of Motivation
The theory is based on three variables - valence, instrumentality and expectancy – and is therefore commonly termed VIE theory .
Meaning of the variables
Valence (V) denotes the strength of an individual’s preference for a particular outcome .
Instrumentality (I) refers to the degree to which a first-level outcome would help in attaining the desired second-level outcome . Instrumentality serves as an input for valence.
Expectancy (E) is the probability (ranging from 0 to 1) that performing a specific action would produce a particular first-level outcome or effort .
Superior performance of an employee is the first-level outcome, which is considered instrumental for getting a promotion , the second-level outcome.
Expectancy is the effort to achieve first-level outcome
Instrumentality relates first-level outcome to second-level outcome.
Three types of relationships are identified in Vroom’s theory:
Effort-performance relationship : This shows an individual’s perception of the probability that a specific level of performance would result if he exerts a certain amount of effort .
Performance-reward relationship : It denotes the extent of an individual’s belief that a particular level of performance would result in achieving the desired outcome.
Rewards-personal goals relationship: This refers to the degree to which an individual’s personal goals or needs are satisfied by the rewards given by the organization and his perception of the attractiveness of these rewards.
The Porter-Lawler Model The model holds that performance in an organization is dependent on three factors :
An employee should have the desire to perform , i. e. he must feel motivated to accomplish the task .
Motivation alone cannot ensure successful performance of a task. The employee should also have the abilities and skills required to successfully perform the task.
The employee should have a clear perception of his role in the organization and an accurate knowledge of the job requirements . This will enable him to focus his efforts on accomplishing the assigned tasks.
THE CONTEMPORARY THEORIES OF WORK MOTIVATION Equity Theory
The degree of equity or inequity perceived by an employee with reference to his work situation plays a major role in work performance and satisfaction.
An employee compares the outcome: what he gets from his job in relation to what he gives to the job , i.e. job inputs.
Equity is represented schematically as: = Person’s outcomes Person’s inputs Other’s outcomes Other’s inputs Inequity is represented as followed: Person’s outcomes Person’s inputs < Other’s outcomes Other’s inputs Other’s outcomes Other’s inputs Person’s inputs Person’s outcomes > or
Self-inside: The employee compares his experiences in the present position with the experiences of those holding a similar position in the same organization .
Self-outside: The employee compares his experiences in the present position with the experiences of those holding a similar position in another organization .
The various referent comparisons used by an employee are:
Other-inside : The employee compares his experience in the present position with the experience of another individual or group of individuals holding a different position but belonging to the same organization.
Other-outside: The employee compares his experiences in the present position with that of another individual or group of individuals holding a different position and belonging to a different organization .
There are four variables that influence an employee’s choice of referent . These are the gender of the employee, length of tenure of the employee in the organization, level at which the employee is working in the organization , and level of education or professional qualifications of the employee.
If an employee perceives an inequity, he will make certain choices .
Change in inputs
Change in outcomes
Distort perceptions of self
Distort perception of others
Choose a different referent
Leave the field
It identifies attributions made by people as the basis for their motivation .
Explains the relationship between personal perception and interpersonal behavior .
Common assumptions of attribution theories:
They try to provide a logical explanation to all that is happening.
They attribute actions of individuals to internal or external causes.
Those theories propose that individuals follow a fairly logical approach in making attributions .
The theory states that since the causes and reasons for an individual’s behavior cannot be directly observed , one has to depend to a great extent on the perception of the individual in order to understand his behavior .
Attribution theory also assumes that humans are rational and motivated beings.
Locus of control attributions
‘ Locus of control’ refers to the chief source of factors that creates a result or gives rise to an outcome in the employee’s perception.
Those employees who believe that there is an internal control for all outcomes feel they have the power to change or influence the outcomes by means of their ability, skills and efforts.
Those employees who believe that there is an external control for all outcomes feel that they are in no position to control them . In their opinion, external factors like luck, chance, etc. are responsible for influencing outcomes .
Bernard Weiner, a social psychologist, found that the stability of attribution was also important in determining motivation .
Employees with longer work experience tend to have stable internal attributions about their abilities and unstable internal attribution regarding effort .
Kelley suggested other dimensions such as consensus, consistency and distinctiveness having an impact on the type of attributions made by individuals .
Consensus denotes the extent to which others behave in a similar manner in the same situation .
Consistency refers to a pattern of behavior, which may be relatively stable or unstable . This shows whether a person behaves similarly in a similar situation or if a particular behavior is just an infrequent occurrence.
Distinctiveness indicates whether a person’s behavior is similar for all tasks or whether his behavior differs from one task to another.
An individual having high consensus, consistency, as well as distinctiveness can be expected to make attributions to external or environmental factors .
Individuals showing low consensus, high consistency and low distinctiveness , can be expected to attribute outcome or results to internal or personal causes .
Control Theory And Agency Theory
Control is a cognitive phenomenon. It reflects an individual’s ability to control his life and aspects associated with his job .
Perceived control enhances job satisfaction and reduces absenteeism .
An agency relationship is said to exist when one or more individuals i.e. the principal , engages another person i.e. the agent, to perform some activity on his or their behalf.
The interests of principals and agents sometimes conflict with each other .
MOTIVATION OF PERFORMANCE THROUGH JOB DESIGN AND GOAL SETTING Motivating Performance through Job Design
This theory advocated the structuring of work tasks into highly standardized and specialized jobs to simplify the process of hiring, training and supervision .
The primary objective of this exercise was to minimize the operational costs involved at each stage of the production of good and service.
This kind of organizational structure led to a high degree of control over workers.
The design of a person’s job has a considerable impact on his/her behavior .
“ Job Design ” can be defined as the process of structuring tasks and responsibilities into a job in an attempt to make the job more meaningful, significant and satisfying.
Approaches to job design
Job engineering approach to job design
The job engineering approach is concerned with issues like plant layout, design of processes and tools, and the measurement and standardization of work processes and human-machine interactions.
Job enlargement approach
Horizontal expansion of jobs means increasing the number of jobs performed by the worker , thereby making the job less specialized and monotonous .
The rotation of workers between various departments reduces the boredom of performing the same job activities.
Vertical expansion results in an increase in the content of work and requires employee to have a high level of skill and knowledge .
It also facilitates an increase in the level of autonomy by allowing workers to plan, direct, control and evaluate their own performance on the job.
Quality of work life and sociotechnical approach to job design
QWL is concerned with the overall climate at the workplace . This approach deals with the impact of work on the employees and on organizational effectiveness.
Job characteristics approach to job design
Identifies certain features of jobs that result in certain psychological states .
The core dimensions or characteristics of a job that affect its nature are skill variety, task identity, task significance, autonomy and feedback .
Skill variety refers to the degree to which a worker is given the opportunity to use his knowledge and his wide range of skills and abilities , to perform his job.
Task identity refers to the extent to which an employee is responsible for the completion of a distinct, identifiable module of the job assigned .
Task significance refers to the importance attached to a specific job in the organization.
Autonomy refers to the amount of freedom a worker has in performing his job.
Feedback refers to any appraisal received by the employee about his performance on the job after its accomplishment.
Realization of critical psychological states
The psychological states discussed below, play an important role in shaping individuals job motivation and satisfaction .
Meaningfulness Responsibility Awareness of results Personal of work outcomes
Job enrichment results in increasing the responsibility and accountability of the job rather then simply increasing the number of tasks to be performed.
Provides employees with the opportunity to plan and execute their of job and evaluate their own performance.
Measuring task scope
Task scope refers to a dimension for describing jobs at various levels of the organization. This task scope encompasses the variety of activities a person has to perform to complete as particular job .
Combination of tasks
Employees are not only given adequate opportunities to develop their skills, but are also empowered to plan, schedule and execute activities themselves . The employees are thus made completely accountable for their performance.
Introduction of an open feed back system
The employees should be given feedback on the positive aspects of their performance to encourage them to raise their level of productivity. This feedback should be free from the biases held by the managers.
Formation of natural teams
The management must encourage the formation of informal, self motivated teams within the existing structures of the organization. This facilitates interaction among the various groups of employees , irrespective of the type of work they are involved in. The formation of such teams enhances skill variety, builds emotional relationships among employees and facilitates free interaction among them .
Motivating Performance through Goal Setting
The theory of goal setting originated at the turn of the century with the emergence of the theory of Scientific Management by F W Taylor.
The theory of goal setting as propounded by Locke, Wood and Mento is based on the principle that difficult goals stimulate performance and commitment .
Locke’s theory assumes that human behavior is purposeful and that goals direct and sustain their behavior in a particular manner.
Two primary attributes of goals, content and intensity, drive behavior towards the accomplishment of tasks .
The content attribute of goals refers to the level of difficulty involved in attaining the goal.
Intensity refers to the process by which a goal is set and accomplished.
It relates to employee participation in goal setting and then commitment towards achieving the goal set by them .
Goals should be specific
Goals should be difficult and challenging
Goals must be owned and accepted
Goals must have a specific time frame
Goals should be measurable
Performance enhancement through goal setting
Barriers to effective goal setting
Lack of top management support
Lack of communication
Content of the goal
APPLICATION OF GOAL SETTING TO ORGANIZATIONAL SYSTEM PERFORMANCE
The theory of goal setting is usually implemented through a system called Management by Objectives , popularly knows as MBO. The term MBO was coined by Peter Drucker.
MBO refers to the process of setting goals and objectives through the participation of the management and the workers.
MBO therefore, is a program consisting of a specific set of goals to be achieved within a pre-determined time period.
The common features of all MBO programs are goal specification , participative decision making , an explicit time period for the achievement of targets , and performance feedback .