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Motivation Theory - Similarity of Maslow Motivational Needs and Lockes and Lathams Goal Setting theory

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Introduction to motivation We all need some a psychology/mental drives to achieving set of needs. This drives could be our reactive responses to situations, the incentive that drives people to behavioural response are sometime innate or acquired as a result of their experiences. The stimulants are our motive of doing whatever we doing at a particular point in time. These motives vary from individual, teams and organisations. For some people, their motives (drives) for going to work is to earn plenty of money; for some it is basically for job satisfactions and the working environments. In management term this drive is also called motivation. ?Motivation is the result of the interaction between an individual and situation. Motivation can be defined as the process that form individual intensity, direction and persistence of effort toward attaining a goal? (T.R Mithell 1997). From the above definitions, motivation is defined simple as our interaction with what we are engaged in. What drives us to doing it, what make us more persistence in doing it and what goals we set out to achieve in the situation. Motivation is our inner enforcement that constantly drives us on towards achieving set-out goals and objectives. In work environment motivation is the extent to which individual/group engaged by their job roles. From the study of different motivation theories, it is a known fact that work performances are directly linked to the psychological satisfactions derived from his/her engagement with the tasks at hand or situation. ...read more.


Even those who get to this point of the hierarchy never stop aiming for something else as human needs are endless. Motivators at this point are usually thing like justice, truth, wisdom, meaning etc. Process Theory of Motivation (Locke?s Goal-setting theory) Process theories explain how people select behavioural actions to meet their needs and determine whether their choices were successful (Richard L. Daft 2010, p.412). The process theory of motivation that will be discussed in this essay is goal-setting theory by Edwin Locke?s. Locke?s believed managers can improve motivations of it staffs and enhance performance by setting specific, goal difficulty/challenging, achievable goals and by helping people track their progress toward goal attainment by providing timely and fair feedback. The main features of goal-setting theory as stated by Locke and Latham (1990) are as follows: Goal difficulty: people are most likely to me motivated by challenging task than a simple task; so it is ideal for a manager to set difficult tasks for the staffs in other to encourage them to work hard towards achieving it. Goal specificity: goal should be clear and written in the language understood by the employees; it should also contain less ambiguity. Participation: mutual participation encourages employees to work towards achieving the goals set?out by the employers as participating create a sense of belonging. Acceptance: the goals should be thoroughly explain to the people concerned, as understanding of goals will lead to the willingness to pursue the goals and the acceptance of the goals. ...read more.


Here manager/supervisor gives task to lower staffs within a time-frame, set the objectives and the expected outcome of the task. Goal-setting is prevalent in most or all service organisations as these companies are result-driven hence target has to be set to meet up with the result. Limitations of these theories (Maslow and Locke theory) Limitations and criticisms Hierarchy of needs Goal setting theory It lack practical support It assume rational model of humanity It is societal based approach to motivation i.e. it is based on westernised ideas of self realisation. Goals can unanticipated and adverse effect and manager must select them carefully to ensure it there are do-able. Little evidence support Maslow?s claim of satisfying one motivational need at a time. Manager sometime believes goal-setting is the penance for all motivation deficits. Conclusions Motivation is an important part of our daily existence; what drives us towards achieving goals is a question of how much we perceived the attainment of the target. This drives are mostly innate hence it cannot be accessed by an outsiders. However, the output of the drives is quantifiable and can be measures by performance indicators. This essay has focused great amount of time explaining the process and content theories of motivation. The differences of these theories were analysed, also looked at are how these theories can be apply at work place. The limitations of both theories were also looked at. However, this essay does not rigidly recommend the use of any particular theory. It is axiomatic that organisation that employed the use of different theories simultaneously yielded high performance results from its employees. ...read more.

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