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  1. 1. Chapter 4Fostering Learning and ReinforcementOverview of Learning TheoriesLearning Through Rewards and Punishments*Contingencies of Reinforcement*Schedules of Reinforcement*Social Learning TheoryCase: Henry Butts Oldsmobile 1
  2. 2. Nature of LearningLearning is a relatively permanent change inknowledge or observable behavior that resultsfrom practice or experience.Importance of Learning to OB* [Not in Text] Most organizational behavior is learned (remember that only 2-12% of behavior is directly linked to personality) By controlling the situation, a manager can influence behavior/performance The manager is held accountable for the performance of his/her subordinates 2
  3. 3. Overview of the Three Types of LearningClassical Conditioning: The learning of“involuntary,” reflexive behavior, such asemotional reactionsOperant Conditioning: The learning ofvoluntary, goal-directed behavior through thedirect experience of consequencesSocial Learning: The learning of voluntary, goal-directed behavior through observation andimitation of others 3
  4. 4. Classical ConditioningUnconditionedstimulus(food) Reflex response (salivation)Conditionedstimulus(metronome) 4
  5. 5. Examples of Operant Behaviors and Their ConsequencesBEHAVIORS CONSEQUENCESThe Individual works and is paid. is late to work and is docked pay. enters a restaurant and eats. enters a football stadium and watches a football game. enters a grocery store and buys food. 5
  6. 6. Examples of the Three Types of Learning: Which Example Illustrates Each Type?After a tightening in policy regarding lateness, a workersees a coworker fired for excessive tardiness, resulting inincreased attention to arriving on timeAfter a tightening in policy regarding lateness, a workerreceives a written reprimand for being late twice in onemonth, resulting in increased attention to arriving on timeAfter witnessing a coworker’s accidental loss of severalfingers in a machinery accident, a worker experiencesanxiety when operating the same piece of machinery 6
  7. 7. Contingency of Reinforcement*Definition: The relationship between a behavior and thepreceding and following environmental events thatinfluence that behaviorBasic Components: Antecedent -- the stimulus that precedes the behavior Behavior -- the behavior emitted in response to the stimulus Consequence -- the positive or negative consequence of the behaviorImportant Note: Managers can often control thecontingencies of reinforcement influencing theirsubordinate’s behavior, and thereby, the behavior itself 7
  8. 8. Example of Contingent Reinforcement NO Manager is silent or reprimands employeeManager and Does employeeemployee achieve goal?set goal Manager compliments employee for YES accomplishmentAntecedent Employee Consequences Reinforcement(precedes the Task (result of the Contingentbehavior) Behavior behavior) on Consequence 8
  9. 9. Categories of ReinforcersAll reinforcers fall into one of two categories: Primary Reinforcers -- Based upon the satisfaction of physiological needs, such as food, water, air, sex, escape from pain, etc. (Note that the text defines this as: “an event for which the individual already knows the value.”) Secondary Reinforcers -- Learned reinforcers; the text defines this as “an event that once had neutral value but has taken on some positive or negative value for an individual because of past experience.” 9
  10. 10. Types of Contingencies of Reinforcement* Event is Added Event is Removed (best to use)Pleasant Positive reinforcement OmissionEvent (decreases behavior) (increases behavior)Unpleasant Punishment NegativeEvent (decreases behavior) reinforcement (worst to use) (increases behavior) 10
  11. 11. Rewards Used by OrganizationsMATERIAL REWARDS SUPPLEMENTAL BENEFITS STATUS SYMBOLSPay Company automobiles Corner officesPay raises Health insurance plans Offices with windowsStock options Pension contributions CarpetingProfit sharingDeferred compensation Vacation and sick leave DrapesBonuses/bonus plans Recreation facilities PaintingsIncentive plans Child care support WatchesExpense accounts Club privileges Rings Parental leave Private restroomsSOCIAL/INTER- REWARDS FROM SELF-ADMINISTEREDPERSONAL REWARDS THE TASK REWARDSPraise Sense of achievement Self-congratulationDevelopmental feedback Jobs with more responsibility Self-recognitionSmiles, pats on the back, and Job autonomy/self-direction Self-praise other nonverbal signals Performing important tasks Self-development throughRequests for suggestions expanded knowledge/skillsInvitations to coffee or lunch Greater sense of self-worthWall plaques 11
  12. 12. Negative Reinforcement*Definition: An unpleasant event is occurring which can beremoved by emitting the desired behaviorDiffers from punishment, but may result from the fear ofpunishmentTwo types are identified: Escape Learning: An unpleasant event occurs until the employee emits an “escape response” to terminate it Avoidance Learning: An employee prevents an unpleasant event from occurring by emitting the proper behavior [Not in Text] 12
  13. 13. Potential Negative Effects of Punishment* Recurrence of undesirable employee behavior Undesirable emotional reaction Short-term But decrease in leads to Aggressive, disruptive Undesirable Punishment frequency long-term behaviorAntecedent employee by of behavior manager undesirable Apathetic, employee noncreative behavior performance Fear of manager Which tends to reinforce High turnover and absenteeism 13
  14. 14. Punishment and Interpersonal Relations* [Not in Text]The inappropriate use of punishment increaseswith: Anger and/or frustration on the part of the manager Inadequate interpersonal communicationIn such cases, this inappropriate punishmentcreates long term interpersonal problems, by: Reducing trust Stifling motivation Undermining and/or destroying relationships 14
  15. 15. How to Make Punishment EffectiveManagers should: Use the principles of contingent punishment, immediate punishment, and punishment size Praise in public, punish in private Develop alternative desired behavior Balance the use of pleasant and unpleasant events Use “positive discipline” (i.e., change behavior through reasoning, with an emphasis on personal responsibility or “self control,” rather than by imposing increasingly severe punishments) 15
  16. 16. Guidelines for Using Contingencies of ReinforcementManagers should: Not reward all employees the same (i.e., take individual differences into account to reward employees with consequences that they personally value, within the constraints of perceived equity) Consider consequences of both actions and non-actions Make employees aware of what behavior will be reinforced (and then be sure to reinforce it uniformly) Let employees know what they are doing wrong Not punish in front of others Make their response equal to workers’ behavior 16
  17. 17. Schedules of Reinforcement*Definition: The determination of when reinforcers areapplied; after every response or only after some responsesTwo general categories of schedule are: Continuous Reinforcement: Every behavior is reinforced; the simplest schedule Intermittent Reinforcement: Only some behaviors are reinforced; four types are identified in the text: – Fixed Interval: based on a fixed time interval – Fixed Ratio: based on a fixed number of responses – Variable Interval: based on a variable time interval – Variable Ratio: based on a variable number of responses 17
  18. 18. Comparisons of Schedules of Reinforcement FORM OF INFLUENCE ON EFFECTS ONSCHEDULE REWARD PERFORMANCE BEHAVIORFixed interval Reward on fixed Leads to average Fast extinction of time basis and irregular behavior performanceFixed ratio Reward tied to Leads quickly to Moderately fast specific number of very high and extinction of responses stable performance behaviorVariable interval Reward given after Leads to Slow extinction of varying periods of moderately high behavior time and stable performanceVariable ratio Reward given for Leads to very high Very slow some behaviors performance extinction of behavior 18
  19. 19. Social Learning TheoryLearning viewed as knowledge acquisition throughthe mental processing of informationIndividuals learn voluntary behaviors by observingthe behavior/consequences of others, cognitivelyprocessing that information, and then imitating, ornot repeating, that behavior 19
  20. 20. Symbolizing Forethought Vicarious Learning Five Dimensions of Social Learning Theory Self-Control Self-Efficacy20
  21. 21. Explanation of theFive Dimensions of Social Learning Theory People use symbols as cognitive models that serve to guide their behavior People use forethought to anticipate, plan, and guide their behaviors and actions People learn vicariously (indirectly) by observing the behavior of others and the real or imagined consequences of those behaviors People exhibit self-control by taking personal responsibility to learn new behavior even though there is no external pressure to do so People have differing levels of self-efficacy, which differentially influences their learning and behavior 21
  22. 22. Self-Efficacy*Definition: Refers to the individual’s confidence in their ability to perform a specific task in a specific situation Varies by people and tasks Strongly influences learning, with higher levels facilitating learning by enhancing goal setting, effort, and persistence toward success Managers can and should influence subordinate’s self- efficacy levels 22
  23. 23. Self-Efficacy at Work HIGH “I know I can do the job  Set goals and have outstanding  Preserve/practicePast quality”  Creatively solveAccomplishments problems  Visualize success  Learn from failure Performance of Others Self-efficacy LOW  Avoid difficult tasks  Think of excuses for failing  Develop low Emotional “I don’t think I can do the aspirations State  Quit job on time and have  Blame setbacks on outstanding quality” lack of ability or luck 23
  24. 24. How Managers Can Apply Social Learning TheoryManagers should: Identify behaviors that lead to improved performance Select an appropriate model Make sure that employees have requisite skills Create a positive learning situation Provide positive consequences for successful performance (i.e., reinforcement) Develop organizational support for new behaviors (i.e., maintain proper contingencies of reinforcement) 24
  25. 25. Henry Butts Oldsmobile Case Questions1. How effective is Henry Butts’ management strategy?2. Which component of this strategy is now illegal? What is used in its place?3. Identify or speculate on examples in the case of the following concepts from the chapter: a) Operant learning; social learning b) Secondary reinforcement c) Positive reinforcement, negative reinforcement, punishment d) Escape or avoidance learning e) Continuous, fixed ratio, and fixed or variable interval reinforcement schedules 25