Describe the key concepts in the expectancy theory of motivation. How do these concepts explain the level of motivation that a person may display at work?
According to expectancy theory, work motivation depends on the relationships among the following three factors:
• Expectancy (also called the effort-performance expectancy) is a person’s belief that working hard will result in a desired level of task performance being achieved.
• Instrumentality (also called the performance-outcome expectancy) is a person’s belief that successful task performance will be followed by rewards and other potential outcomes.
• Valence is the value a person assigns to possible rewards and other work-related outcomes.
The relationship between motivation and the three factors –– expectancy, instrumentality, and valence –– can be expressed as an equation:
M = E x I x V
where M = motivation, E = expectancy, I = instrumentality, and V = valence.
This multiplier effect implies that for motivation to be high, expectancy, instrumentality, and valence must be high, and valence must be positive. Conversely, if expectancy is low (the person feels he or she can’t perform), instrumentality is low (the person is not confident performance will be rewarded), and/or valence is low or negative (the reward is not valued), motivation will be low.
Source: Management, 11th Edition & 12th Edition- John R. Schermerhorn