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Expectancy Theory of Motivation Part 2

By Dave Gannaway

Vroom's Expectancy Theory of Motivation is one of many motivational theories that I find amusing in that the academic communities seem to enjoy taking something very obvious and making it complex. I ask myself, do I really need the studies of Victor Vroom’s long and convoluted Expectancy Theory of Motivation to conclude that:

• If I work hard, my job performance will improve?

• If I do a better job my boss may increase my pay and/or benefits?

• If all that happens I will be considered a valued employee?

Many thousands of self-help and motivational books put the expectancy theory of motivation into its true and simple context … what you think and expect is what you create! Who can deny that? Ask any entrepreneur, business owner or motivational guru.

If employees are not interested and have no intention of making any effort at their job, no amount of employer motivation can create a desire in him!

All Motivation Comes from Within the Individual

It is quite impossible to want something for someone else. Many parents observe great potential in their children … they may see a brilliant futures awaiting them, yet despite much motivation and encouragement, the child shows zero response or interest and may end-up flipping burgers.

All desires and motivation comes from within. The setting of a goal or having the intention to do something contains all the ingredients required to do it. To desperately want to do or achieve something contains within it the seeds, all the energy and power it requires … the intention to make this thing happen is charged with the power to do it.

Another person cannot be given power or intention, it’s an inside job.

When an activity is approached from a place of apathy, the power applied is correspondingly apathetic. As I so often say, “you cannot steer a stationary car!” One has to first overcome inertia. The degree and ease to which the car can be moved depends upon the energy and vitality applied to it.

Motivated people can be encouraged to increase their motivation by a third party but the spark of life must be there to begin with.

Music, movies, and good books can inspire an individual into action. From that point the spark can be fanned into fire and the fire into a furnaces but the spark has to be there to begin with.

The expectancy theory also works in reverse. Notice when people are receiving unemployment payments, their expectancy to get work can drop alarmingly. In the UK where the unemployed can receive very generous allowances, there are areas where several generations of families have never worked nor have any expectancy to work.

Enough negativity … the thoughts and expectations you hold in consciousness are the fertile seeds of your future. Even from the depths of depression great achievements can and will grow when vitality and excitement are applied to a specific goal or undertaking. Expecting success is a self-fulfilling prophecy. No employer, parent or the most loving spouse can give it, the seed is conceived within the individual.

You May Also Enjoy These Related Articles:

Expectancy Theory of Motivation Part 1

Intrinsic vs. Extrisnic Motivation

Employee Motivation

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