motivation monday gif

Work motivation “is a set of energetic forces that originate both within as well as beyond an individual’s being, to initiate work-related behavior, and to determine its form, direction, intensity, and duration” Understanding what motivates an organization’s employees is central to the study of I–O psychology. Motivation is a person’s internal disposition to be concerned with and approach positive incentives and avoid negative incentives. To further this, an incentive is the anticipated reward or aversive event available in the environment. While motivation can often be used as a tool to help predict behavior, it varies greatly among individuals and must often be combined with ability and environmental factors to actually influence behavior and performance. Results from a 2012 study, which examined age-related differences in work motivation, suggest a “shift in people’s motives” rather than a general decline in motivation with age. That is, it seemed that older employees were less motivated by extrinsically related features of a job, but more by intrinsically rewarding job features. Work motivation is strongly influenced by certain cultural characteristics. Between countries with comparable levels of economic development, collectivist countries tend to have higher levels of work motivation than do countries that tend toward individualism. Similarly measured, higher levels of work motivation can be found in countries that exhibit a long versus a short-term orientation. Also, while national income is not itself a strong predictor of work motivation, indicators that describe a nation’s economic strength and stability, such as life expectancy, are. Work motivation decreases as a nation’s long term economic strength increases. Currently work motivation research has explored motivation that may not be consciously driven. This method goal setting is referred to as goal priming. Effects of primed subconscious goals in addition to goals that are consciously set related to job performance have been studied by Stajkovic, Latham, Sergent, and Peterson, who conducted research on a CEO of a for-profit business organization using goal priming to motivate job performance. Goal priming refers to the achievement of a goal by external cues given. These cues can affect information processing and behaviour the pursuit of this goal. In this study, the goal was primed by the CEO using achievement related words strategy placed in emails to employees. This seemingly small gesture alone not only cost the CEO very little money, but it increased objectively measured performance efficiency by 35% and effectiveness by 15% over the course of a 5 day work week. There has been controversy about the true efficacy of this work as to date, only four goal priming experiments have been conducted. However, the results of these studies found support for the hypothesis that primed goals do enhance performance in a for-profit business organization setting.The It is important for organizations to understand and to structure the work environment to encourage productive behaviors and discourage those that are unproductive given work motivation’s role in influencing workplace behavior and performance. Motivational systems are at the center of behavioral organization. Emmons states, “Behavior is a discrepancy-reduction process, whereby individuals act to minimize the discrepancy between their present condition and a desired standard or goal” (1999, p. 28). If we look at this from the standpoint of how leaders can motivate their followers to enhance their performance, participation in any organization involves exercising choice; a person chooses among alternatives, responding to the motivation to perform or ignore what is offered. This suggests that a follower’s consideration of personal interests and the desire to expand knowledge and skill has significant motivational impact, requiring the leader to consider motivating strategies to enhance performance. There is general consensus that motivation involves three psychological processes: arousal, direction, and intensity. Arousal is what initiates action. It is fueled by a person’s need or desire for something that is missing from their lives at a given moment, either totally or partially. Direction refers to the path employees take in accomplishing the goals they set for themselves. Finally, intensity is the vigor and amount of energy employees put into this goal-directed work performance. The level of intensity is based on the importance and difficulty of the goal. These psychological processes result in four outcomes. First, motivation serves to direct attention, focusing on particular issues, people, tasks, etc. It also serves to stimulate an employee to put forth effort. Next, motivation results in persistence, preventing one from deviating from the goal-seeking behavior. Finally, motivation results in task strategies, which as defined by Mitchell & Daniels, are “patterns of behavior produced to reach a particular goal.

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