Motivation is the psychological process that arouses and directs behavior. There are three theories that will help us understand the motivation of employees in the workplace.
- Goal-setting theory – Suggests behavior can be motivated with specific, challenging goals that are obtainable. The key to goal-setting theory is ensuring employees understand what is expected and accept the goals.
- Self-efficacy – Is the belief “I Can/Can’t Do this Task.” Self-efficacy is the belief in one’s personal ability to do a task. There is a lot to be said to scoring high in this trait. People who are confident about their ability tend to succeed, whereas those who doubt their ability tend to fail.
- Reinforcement theory – Explains how behavior can be altered by administering positive or negative consequences to actions of employees. Behavior with positive consequences tends to be repeated, and behavior with negative consequences tends not to be repeated.
For this week’s discussion, I want you to take a moment to think about what it would take to motivate you to achieve your goals at work, and what it would take to motivate people that you’ve worked with, or your family or friends, to achieve their goals.
- Of the four areas of study listed above, which would you focus on first?
- Make sure to explain why you chose this area, and why it would take precedence over the other areas.