Process and Content Theory of Motivation and How They Apply to th...

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Process and Content Theory of Motivation and How They Apply to the Work Place

By | May 2008
Page 1 of 6
The term motivation can be described in many different formats and views, but according to Dr Stephen P. Robbins, this is the process that account for an individuals intensity, direction and persistence of effort toward attaining a goal (S. P. Robbins, Organizational Behaviour 9ed, p.155). However, I will describe motivation as any factor which will cause an increase in my normal input into doing something, and with the knowledge and hope that a reward will be gained afterwards.

Below are a description of what a process and a content theory of motivation are, their features and how each applies to the workplace.
A process theory define motivation as a rational cognitive process occurring within the individual e.g. Adams’ Equity theory. While on the other hand, a content theory define motivation in terms of need satisfaction, e.g. Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs theory. Both of these theories defer in a significant way because each one recognises motivation and it features differently to the other.

The two main types of motivational theories, I will be discussing below are, Victor Vroom’s Expectancy theory which is a Process theory, its features and how it applies to the workplace. Further more, Clayton P. Alderfer’s ERG theory which on the other hand is a content theory, its features and how it also applies to the workplace.

According to Victor Vroom’s expectancy theory, motivation is “the strength of a tendency to act in a certain way depends on the strength of an expectation that the act will be followed by a given outcome and on the attractiveness of that outcome to the individual” (S. P. Robbins, Behaviour 9ed, p.171)

So in other words, by researching into motivational theories for my essay, not only will I benefit from it now, but I am likely to benefit from it in my future employment.

This theory also coincide with Alderfer ERG theory (Fincham and Rhodes, Organizational Behaviour, 3rd Edition), which emphasis that people who do not need...

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