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Essay about Process Theories Of Motivation

Motivation is a huge influencer of productivity. Numerous managers know that what encourages workers to reach their peak performance is difficult. This is because employees react in lots of ways to their jobs and their company’s practices. Therefore, a behavior that is encouraged is one which is voluntarily selected by each employee.

The content approach to inspiration is one that is of the assumption that people are inspired by the desire to satisfy inner needs. Content theories are something that is on the requirements that encourage individuals.

On the other hand, process technique to motivation is on how and why people choose specific habits in order to fulfill their personal objectives. Process theories are on the outdoors influences or behaviors that individuals choose to meet their needs. These external or outside impacts are normally available to supervisors.

An example of the content method to motivation is Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs which has five level of needs. People increase these levels as their requirements are answered.

As the lower needs are pleased, then the higher needs are triggered. The most powerful worker need is that one which has not be yet pleased. Abraham Maslow presented his needs theory in 1942 and then was published in 1954 in Inspiration and Character. This can be advantageous due to the fact that the staff members’ requirements are addressed as the individual is satisfied.

However it has its weak point too since it is stiff and does not cover the other little information that require to be considered when discussing inspirations of people.

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Another material requirement is the Alderfer’s ERG which recognized three classifications of needs and its advantage is that there is the addition of the frustration-regression hypothesis that when individuals are not able to fulfill their higher level of requirements, then, the next lower level needs come out. Meanwhile, another among the material theory is McClelland’s Learned Needs which divides motivation into the requirements for power, association and accomplishment.

This is the theory that is more on people pursuing their goals. People like to control their situations so they take risks and get feedback on their progress. This is mainly what this content theory means. There is also the motivation for power and for affiliation all under McClelland’s Learned Needs. Content needs has advantages especially if the person is motivated internally. But if he is not motivated at all, then these content theories are of not much benefit. (McClelland).

Examples of the process theory Vroom’s Expectancy Model which suggests that people must choose among the alternative behaviors because they will be expecting that these behaviors will also lead to one or more desired outcomes and that the other behaviors will also bring undesirable outcomes.  Expectancy states that effort will also lead to first-order outcomes. Equity is the thinking of fairness which is involved in rewards given.

Another process theory is the Attention, Relevance, Confidence and Satisfaction (ARCS) Model of Motivational Design or Keller’s ARCS Model of Motivation was conceived in the early 1980s by John Keller. This was derived from his theory of motivation, performance and instructional influence developed in the late 1970s.

This is a macro theory that explains a network of relationships of personal and environmental characteristics with focus on the effort, performance and consequences. This is where the idea of reinforcement comes in. It confirms or denies expectations. Several views suggest that internal motivational drives control the lives of peak performers. When one sees a change that lasts, one can be almost be certain that it took roots within the individuals it affects, at the level of their own talents and motives. (Keller).

By contrast, many of the quick fixes treat motivation as if it were a fuel one injects into one’s system to make one run, and propose solutions that are external to the individual. Peak performers usually claim that external motivators produce the shortest-lived results. In effect, this theory is based upon the coordinated ideas of many researches that involve human motivation.  It will sustain learner’s motivation to learn. In short, this theory aims at identifying major categories of variables of individual behavior and of instructional design related to individual effort and performance (Wongwiwatthananukit, Supakit)

The ARCS theory integrates several motivational concepts such as the expectancy-value theory, attribution theory, self-efficacy theory, social learning theory, and environmental theories. An effective way of getting attention, the first building block of the ARCS theory is through the collaborative projects and different methods of presentation. Relevance, the next building block of Keller’s model is achieved by letting students take ownership of the learning experience, making them have more responsibility and commitment to the learning experience. By allowing them to choose a relevant task, they are able to better match their motives and values (Fernandez, Jerry).

The third building block is confidence and students’ learning is enhanced because of his achievements. Confidence is ego building and can thus enhance the way they perceive and learn things. The final building block is satisfaction and learners must have the possibilities to apply new skills (Driscoll, 1993, p. 318 as qtd in Fernandez). These process theories are useful because there are many environmental factors that can influence a person in many ways since they are coming from outside the person. The only problem with this is when the person does not give attention to his external environment or when the external circumstances are not good for the individuals concerned.

Indeed, motivation is why individuals behave the way they do. Two important dimensions of the “whys” of behavior are activation and direction. First, when people are motivated, they do something. Their behavior is activated or energized. Second, when people are motivated, their behavior also is directed. Motivation focuses on how adolescents direct their behavior, or put another way, the specific behaviors adolescents select in certain situations but not others. Thus, this is what defines motivation—it is why individuals behave, think, and feel the way they do, with special consideration of the activation and direction of their behavior (McClelland, David).


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Fernandez, J. Attribution Theory and Keller’s ARCS Model of Motivation. Accessed

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Wongwiwatthananukit, Supakit, Applying the ARCS model of motivational design to

pharmaceutical education. American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education. Retrieved May 6, 2008 at:

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Essay about Process Theories Of Motivation. (2017, Mar 17). Retrieved from

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