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Chapter 2

MGHB02H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 2: Career Management, Job Satisfaction, Absenteeism

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Brian Connelly

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Chapter 2 (pg. 55-76): Personality and Learning
Learning: a relatively permanent change in behaviour that occurs due to
practice or experience
Employees learn
o Practical skills: job specific, knowledge, and technical competence
o Interpersonal skills: communicating, teamwork, conflict resolution
o Cultural awareness: learning social norms of organization and
understanding company goals, business operations, and company
expectations and priorities
Operant learning: learning by which the subject learns to operate on the
environment to achieve certain consequences
o B.F. Skinner study: had rats in a box with a lever that would dispense
food once pressed
Overtime rats learned that pulling the lever meant food
Reinforcement: the process by which stimuli strengthen behaviours
Positive reinforcement: the application or action of a stimulus that
increases or maintains the probability of some behaviour
o Pleasant things such as food, praise, money
Negative reinforcement: the removal of a stimulus that in turn increases or
maintains the probability of some behaviour
o Aversive or unpleasant stimuli
o Managers nagging employees to get things done, and the only
way to stop the nagging is by getting the work done
Errors involving reinforcement
o Confusing rewards with reinforcers
Reward workers with pay, promotion, benefits, paid vacations
Can fail to serve as reinforcers because organizations don’t
make them contingent on behaviour
Ex. Attendance, innovation, productivity
o Neglecting diversity in preference for reinforcers
Individuals have different preferences for reinforcers
Preferences vary as a function of age
Younger employees prefer money while older ones
prefer experiential rewards
o Neglecting important sources of reinforcements
Performance feedback: providing quantitative or qualitative
information on past performance for the purpose of
changing or maintaining performance in specific ways
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Available for jobs that provide feedback concerning
adequacy of performance
Most effective when
o Conveyed in positive manner
o Delivered immediately after performance is
o Represented visually, such as graph or chart
o Specific to behaviour that is being targeted for
Social recognition: informal acknowledgement, attention,
praise, approval, or genuine appreciation for work well done
from one individual or group to another
When made contingent on employee behaviour it can
be an effective mean for performance improvement
Reinforcement strategies
o Fast acquisition of a response: continuous and immediate
reinforcement should be used
Reinforcer should be applied every time behaviour of interest
occurs, and should be done without delay after occurrence
o Persistent behaviour: when it is learned under conditions of partial
and delayed reinforcement
Reducing the probability of a behaviour
o Extinction: the gradual dissipation of behaviour following the
termination of reinforcement
Terminating reinforcement that is maintain some unwanted
Ex. Young marketer up for promotion but boss hesitant
because he always cracks jokes in meetings
Boss told other people in the meeting to not
reciprocate to the joke and to not laugh
Boss positively reinforced constructive comments
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