Psychology 2990A/B Lecture Notes - Job Satisfaction, Job Performance, Job Enrichment
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Chapter 6 (Textbook) – Psychology and the workplace
Content theories of motivation – focus on the importance of the work itself and the challenges,
growth opportunities and responsibilities work provides for employees.
Achievement motivation theory – is a characteristic of successful executives. Desire to
accomplish something, to do a good job and to be the best.
Eg: In Poland (communist country) level of concern for achievement was as high as the US.
1. Favor work enviro – able to assume responsibility for solving problems.
2. Take calculated risks and set moderate, attainable goals.
3. Need continued recognition and feedback about their progress
- *Managers high in the need to achieve display more respect for their subordinates.
- * Men and women have been found to score significantly high in the need to achieve than
male and female employees who are not entrepreneurs.
- Two types of goals –
- Mastery – developing competence and self-satisfaction through acquiring knowledge
- Performance – goals involve developing competence by performing better than other
people, such as co-workers.
- Study in Netherlands – employees with mastery orientation were more effective on the
job than were those with a strong performance orientation.
- *People with strong performance orientation established lower in job satisfaction and
- Study on Taiwanese employees - found three things in high-tech jobs – perseverance,
competition and level of difficulty of controlling task.
Needs Hierarchy theory – needs hierarchy theory suggests that people always want what they
do not yet have.
Physiological needs, safety needs (shelter and psych security), belonging and love needs ( social
needs for love and affection), esteem needs (admiration and respect for others), self-
actualization (achieving our full-potential).
- *belonging needs can be important motivating forces on the job.
- * routine or boring job DOES NOT satisfy self-actualization needs, no matter how high
- Maslow’s theory has gotten little research support.
Motivator-hygiene (two-factor) theory - which deals with both motivation and job satisfaction.
There are two things – motivator needs (Maslow’s self actualization)– produce job satisfaction
and hygiene needs – motivate employees to high job performance.
Hygiene needs (Maslow’s physio, belonging and safety) are external to the tasks of a particular
job and involve things like- company policy, supervision, interpersonal relations.
*Motivator’s needs played a more important role in job performance in the study on British
- Note” when hygiene needs are satisfied the results are not necessarily job satisfaction, but an
absence of dissatisfaction.
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Job enrichment (Herzberg believed to focus on internal job factors) :
1. Remove some management control over employees
2. Give employees to work on a whole unit instead of one part of it
3. Provide regular feedback
4. Encourage employees to take on new, challenging tasks and become experts.
Job characteristics theory – of motivation that states that specific job characteristics lead to
psychological conditions that can increase motivation, performance and satisfaction in
employees who have a high growth need.
1. skills variety
2. task identity – doing a whole unit
3. task significance
5. feedback – info of their contribution to the company.
Eg: In research, ppl with high growth need were found to be more uncomfortable with changes
in job characteristics.
Note – The stronger the growth need , the more the person will value the positive emotional
feelings that result from good job performance.
- Increase sense of growth = increase motivation.
Hackman developed Job Diagnostic Survey (JDS) – self0report inventory survey. 1. Employees
perception of the job, 2. Employees level of growth need, 3. Job satisfaction.
Process theories of motivation
Valence-instrumentality expectancy ( VIE) – the theory of motivation that stresses that people
make choices that are based on their perceived expectations that certain rewards will follow if
they behave in a particular way.
3. Valence- employees must decide if these outcomes have sufficient value to motivate
them to behave a certain way.
Note – the greater our expectation of receiving a reward, the harder we weill work for it.
Equity theory – by J- Stacy – notion that motivation is influenced by our perception of how
equitably or fairly we are treated at work.
1. Benevolent – ppl described as altruistic, are satisfied when they are under rewarded
compared to other co-workers.
2. Equity sensitive- everyone should be rewarded equally.
3. Entitled –ppl believe that everything they receive is their due. They are only satisfied
when they are over rewarded.
Feeling of unfairly treatment ? – Reduction in level of performance.
Boxed reading.: The work ethic
- Cal Ripken – baseball player; no one has broken his work attendance record!
- Greek, romans and the Hebrews perceived work as a pessimistic thing; curse of gods, sin,
and punishment from god.
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