Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Legal, Acronyms, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.


the force or process which impels people to behave in the way that they do. In a work setting, motivation can be viewed as that which determines whether workers expend the degree of effort necessary to achieve required task objectives. In OCCUPATIONAL PSYCHOLOGY two basic conceptions of motivation can be discerned: ‘needs’ theory and ‘expectancy’ theory Possibly the best known of the former is the ‘hierarchy of needs’ identified by Abraham Maslow (1908-70). He argued that individuals have intrinsic needs which they are impelled to seek to satisfy. These needs, which are ordered in a hierarchy are physical needs (food, warmth, shelter), security needs (safety, home), ego needs (esteem, status) and self-actualization needs (the realization of individual potential). Initially, the lower order needs such as safety determine behaviour but once these are satisfied higher order needs come to dominate. Maslow's theory has been widely criticized, however, for assuming that such needs are universal and that they are always ordered in this particular hierarchy.

Other needs theories include Herzberg's ‘Two Factor Theory of Motivation’. He argued that people are motivated by two kinds of need: hygiene factors (those basic needs such as shelter which, if not satisfied, lead to unhappiness but whose satisfaction does not in itself lead to happiness); and motivators (those higher order needs which when satisfied lead to contentment). The importance of this theory in a work setting is its insistence that managers have to ensure that both hygiene factors (i.e. pay, working conditions) and motivation (i.e. the need for personal fulfilment) are satisfied for a workforce to be content and highly motivated.

A further ‘needs’ theory is the ERG (Existence, Relatedness and Growth) theory of Clayton Alderfer (1940 -). Like Maslow he suggests that there is a hierarchy of needs but that the less a high level need is satisfied the more important a lower level need becomes. Hence demands for more pay in fact really reflect a desire for work to be made more satisfying.

The main alternative approach to ‘needs’ theories is the ‘expectancy’ approach associated with Victor Vroom (1932 -). This suggests that individuals are motivated to act in certain ways not by some basic inner need but by the strength of the expectation that the action will achieve a result seen by them as desirable. The desire for a particular outcome is known as the ‘valence’. This theory is essentially a ‘process’ theory: it emphasizes the process of motivation rather than the nature or content of particular motivators. The strength of people's motivation will be determined by weighing up how much they want something and how far they believe a certain action will contribute to achieving it.

References in periodicals archive ?
Motivation Depot's Club is designed to help people identify and utilize the weight loss methods that are best for their own personal lifestyles.
Nevertheless, there is no single recipe to motivate employees, as empirical data recommends striking a balance between extrinsic and intrinsic motivation. Research also reveals that intrinsic motivation is missing in most of the managers' tool kit when dealing with employees.
If you look at the word "motivation," the word is a derivative of the word "motive." The word "inspiration" on the other hand comes from the late Latin word "inspirare" which means "in spirit" or "divine guidance.
By using this new method, the investigators also hope to learn how inflammation could affect motivation in people mental health conditions, such as depression and schizophrenia.
Learning strategies are important factors in research that aimed to describe the motivation and learning strategy of students as its understanding allow students to report learning strategy they are using and to progress their learning (Chamot, 2004; Grenfell and Macaro, 2007).
There are many theories on motivation; some focus on quality of motivation and others on quantity.
Many theories on motivation and engagement provide helpful frameworks researching academic motivation and engagement in educational settings.
Motivation is individual actions that are performed which changes according to experiences, culture and needs.3,4 Motivation starts with individual's discern on not yet actualized desires or needs, and in order to achieve these the individual takes action.5 The researchers classify motivation in two components i.e as internal and external.
During the past years, researchers have increased their focus on learner motivation in second language (L2) learning and the learners' perceptions for motivational dispositions (Csizer and Magid, 2014).
Roberts (2001) defines motivation as the investigation of the energization, direction and regulation of behavior.
People: Ensure your teams are adequately staffed so employees don't feel overwhelmed by their workloads, which can sap their energy and their motivation. People also need to like and trust those they work with - or at least respect their skillsets.
This study aims to measure the relationship between UNITEN KSHAS employees' motivation to undertake entrepreneurship and innovative behavior.