The hidden costs of rewards

The hidden costs of rewards

Can you combine extrinsic and intrinsic rewards on the job? MO, claims Deci. Satisfying one detracts from the value employees attach to satisfying...

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Can you combine

extrinsic and intrinsic rewards on the job? MO, claims Deci.

Satisfying

one detracts from the value employees

attach to satisfying the other.

Moreover,

with most workers in most situations, intrinsic rewards are superior.

Edward L. Deck

n

cf

n well-managed age worker

much

organizational may

produce

as workers

In addition,

may produce

ways

worker.

How

for these wide variations How

can managers

ways that promote what

units.

several times

as much as the least productive effectiveness?

as

any given unit, the most

worker

do we account

times

in less well-managed

within

productive

units, the averseveral

in

behave

effective performance?

can they encourage

chological people

cost. The

The and

sequence create

shift over the past 15 years.

satisfaction.

feelings, and attitudes

drive

according

to the causes of behavior,

to the behavioristic

ple did not behave desires,

or

approach.

because

feelings;

rather, they behaved (much like machines) as they were programmed to behave. The contrast,

predominant

involves

view

the cognitive

today, processing

by of

when

needs

so forth)

a motive

for the

powerful,

(for food,

become

salient

individual-a

the awareness

For example,

becomes

on some-

a measure

when

of

the hunger

a person

The second element is goal selection.

will have

in the sequence

Here a person

decides what

to do on the basis of his expectations of the satisfaction that will follow this behavior. For example, under the influence of the hunger motive, his goal may be to cook a steak or to go out for a hot fudge sundae. A goal is the

information. This approach asserts that people act on the basis of their expectations of

completion

the consequences

result

of their actions. It is assumed

to

a motive to satisfy his hunger.

Peo-

of their wishes,

is that

the basic elements of behavior in Figure 1.

one’s part that he can achieve

People’s thoughts, said to be irrelevant

begins and

being simply

gone an important

were

point

to do in an attempt

I have outlined a sequence of motivated love, esteem,

has under-

important

psy-

achieve satisfaction.

motive study of motivation

and that people

their goals at the lowest

decide what

in

the motiva-

is goal-directed

try to achieve

In

tion to work ? The

that behavior

of a set of behaviors.

selects a goal because

A person

he expects the goal to

in the satisfaction

of his motive.

The

61

process of goal selection (deciding is at the heart of the motivation is the element

what to do) question

of the sequence

and

that has been

the subject of a great deal of theorizing

and

If his expectations

were correct,

then be satisfied. For example,

a hot fudge

sundae

should

desired

reduction

should

lead to the desired

person

experiences

bring

in hunger,

it with

the anticipated his motive

he

or doing

the a job

Thus

and compares

satisfaction

that con-

that satisfaction,

the

will terminate;

if not, he may go

back and set a different

goal that he expects

to satisfy the still unsatisfied To summarize, behavior,

tion available

in a sequence

a person

of mo-

to him to make decisions

what to do in an attempt

about

to achieve goals that

or the

In terms

to self-actualize;

and self-determining.

of Figure

need

for competence

leads

people

and

1, the intrinsic self-determination

to set challenging

when completed,

goals

fied with their own competence. approaches tention

to motivation

to this

extrinsic

aspect

they

of human

have

focused

drive reduction-hunger,

on

thirst, ma-

and so on. We shall now con-

sider two cognitive

or expectancy

theories

of

both of which relate to work be-

second,

an intrinsic

them,

Traditional

have paid little at-

important

Instead,

motivation,

that,

will leave them feeling satis-

In so doing,

between his current state and desired state to be sure he is on the right track toward his

need

need to feel competent

The

comparisons

It motivates

these are all aspects of people’s basic intrinsic

havior.

makes

need is the es-

motivation.

he expects will lead to the desired satisfaction. the person

en-

so on. You may have heard of the need for

terial rewards,

uses the informa-

to their

play, curiosity, puzzle solving, and

functioning.

motive.

they need to feel efin relation

This basic human

of intrinsic

a

for the action in the first

place. If he has achieved

tivated

sence

achievement,

eating

about

payment.

satisfaction

stituted sequence

vironment. exploration,

research. should

with their surroundings; fective or competent

first is an extrinsic model.

we shall consider

model;

After

the

reviewing

the relationship

be-

tween these two general approaches.

goal. Expectancy

theory

Victor Vroom INTRINSIC ANDEXTRINSIC MOTIVATION

theory

of work

generated

motivation

a considerable

outlined

amount

of empirical

We can divide the field of motivation

broadly

research and discussion.

motiva-

to as an expectancy

theory because it suggests

include

that people engage

in behaviors

the internal

and intrinsic

definition

psychological

must

expect these behaviors

processes involved

in the two kinds of motivation. Using this approach, the distinction typically is made in

comes that they desire.

terms of the needs involved.

precise

Accordingly,

say that a person is intrinsically he engages

in an activity

we

motivated

if

to feel competent

and self-determining in relation to the activity. There is no external reward; the reward is internal to the person and takes the form of feelings he has about himself. Human beings are organisms in constant interaction

a

in 1964 that has

into two parts: extrinsic tion. A meaningful

62

of Yale University

The theory is referred because they

to lead to specific out-

The aim of this theory is to make predictions about what behaviors a

person will engage in. Since a goal refers to the satisfactory completion of a set of behaviors,

another

way

of

viewing

expectancy

theory is that it allows one to predict what goals a person will strive for. This is done by considering what satisfaction can be expected to follow from the behaviors that constitute

Figure 1 SCHEMATXC REPRESENTATION OFTHEBASICELEMENTSIN A SEQUENCEOF MOTIVATED BEHAVIOR

Cool

Motive

Awareness of the desi red sat isfact io of some need; for example, reducing hunger or feeling competent

motivation

Vroom

stated that

occur is called expectancy

to achieve

a goal de-

assessment

that are likely to fol-

assessment

low from the goal. Working

hard at a task,

person

does not much

that working

task that a

Therefore, tions in Vroom’s son’s motivation

model

suggests

the behaviors;

that a peron

importance

that may follow

second,

will actually

the probability follow

the be-

outcome

psychological

is called ualence.

that the second proposition

importance Later

end

of an

we will see

in Vroom’s model

tells us how to determine the valence of an outcome. The probability that an outcome will

up putting

in

probability-but

A person’s

More specifically, osition

decisions

are

Vroom’s first prop-

asserts that a person’s

work hard is calculated

motivation

to

by (1) determining

of each possible outcome,

the

(2) multi-

plying each valence by the probability that the outcome will occur, and (3) adding up the products of these multiplications. Suppose, in the above example, the valence of doing a job well is 4, the valence of working -1

(the minus

negative Further,

means

to do another

overtime

that the person

toward that outcome),

not having

haviors. The

he will

if he works hard at a task may not

based on his own expectations.

valence

to achieve a goal depends

to a person of each outcome that an outcome

it

the first of two proposi-

two things : first, the psychological from

that

that

overtime

like. It is not certain

hard will lead to each of them,

but there is at least some likelihood will.

that a person makes. His subjective

that doesn’t matter.

in overtime,

to do another

and is a subjective

reflect the actual or objective

may result in several outcomes:

(1) doing a job well, (2) putting or (3) not having

Satisfaction follows behavior; there may be a reward such as money or praise that follows the behavior and leads to satisfaction, or the satisfaction may inhere in the behavior itself

Engage in the behaviors selected in the previous step; continue to behave unti I the goals are achieved

pends on the outcomes for example,

Sot isfaction

Bchovior

Selection of a goal; that is, deciding on a set of behaviors that one expects to lead to the satisfaction that he was aware of in the motive

the goal. More specifically, a person’s

Selection

the valence of

task is 2, and so on.

suppose that the probability

a good job through

is

feels

working

of doing

hard is 80 per-

cent, the probability of having to work overtime is 40 percent, the probability of not having to do another

task is 20 percent,

and so

63

Actually,

of course, this step would

the previous

precede

step since one needs to know the

valences in order to calculate motivation. Vroom function

suggested

that

of the value assigned

ual to what

follows

from

valence

an outcome.

example, the valence of the outcome a job well depends job. It may

bonus, credit toward tomers, L. Deci is an assistant professor in the

Edward

department

of psychology at the University of

Rochester. He has MS. and Ph.D. degrees in

and

promotion,

so on. To

to the outcomes

a

satisfied cus-

clarify

used the phrase “first-order

a good

a supervisor, this, Vroom

outcomes”

to refer

that follow from a goal and

social psychology from Carnegie-Mellon

the phrase “second-order

Umversity and an M.B.A. degree from the

all those things that follow from a first-order

Wharton School. He also studied at the London

outcome.

School of Economics

and at Hamilton College.

In 1973-74, he was an interdisciplinary

post-

doctoral feNow at Stanford University. Dr. Deci is author of the boot Intrinsic Motivation

and co-author with B.Y.H. Gilmer

of Industrial

and Organizational

Psychology.

In addition, he is co-editor with Victor I/room of Management

and with

and Motivation

Gilmer and Karn of Readings and Organizational

His writings

Psychology.

numerous

well, putting

in overtime, outcomes.

There is no funda-

between

first- and second-

mental

difference

order outcomes

except the sequence

they occur in any given situation. outcome

may be a first-order

outcome

example,

payment

the bonus

in determining however,

one’s motivation

nesses, hospitals, boards of education, univer-

time, the bonus payment

sities, and government

outcome.

agencies throughout

the United States and lapan.

bonus

payment

we would multiply it to -1

to work hard,

4 times 80 percent and add

times 40 percent,

and so on. If we

consider all possible outcomes, the resulting value will be a number that tells us how motivated a person is to achieve a particular

goal.

We saw that quantifying motivation requires that we know the valence or psychological value of the outcomes that follow a goal. The second proposition of Vroom’s model allows us to calculate these valences.

(which

depends

for example, the motivation

in which Something

in one example in another.

For

was a secondone’s motivaif we were deto put

in extra

might be a first-order

In the latter case, the valence of the

outcome) on. To calculate

and so on are first-

are second-order

termining

Dr. Deci has also been a consultant to busi-

doing a job

whereas the praise and bonus

tion to work hard;

periodicals.

to refer to

order outcomes,

order outcome

professional journals and other

outcomes”

In the present example,

that is a second-order

in Industrial

about intrinsic motivation have appeared in

64

from

For

of doing

on what follows

be praise

is a

by an individ-

being

here is a first-order

on what it may lead toable to buy a color tele-

vision. To

set up the analysis,

we simply

begin with the behaviors and call their completion a goal. The things that may be necessary to achieve the goal and that may follow immediately

from the goal are first-order

out-

comes; whatever may result from any of the first-order outcomes will be considered a second-order outcome. To summarize, serts that people decide

Vroom’s model aswhat to do on the

basis of their perceptions possible

behaviors

satisfaction.

about which

will

lead

People will choose a goal on the

basis of the value of outcomes from

of the

to the greatest

the achievement

probability

that

that may result

of the goal

those outcomes

and

will in fact

follow the goal. Of course a manager typically

not go through

the

would

these calculations;

from

the personality

added,

his model

cause both

suggest

mined

multiplying

by

achieving

the outcome. is in

the

son, however,

managers

is that workers decide how they will

perform

based on their expectations

rewards

will follow

fore, managers

tions so that valent rectly

from

what

must the

of what

behaviors.

There-

learn to structure outcomes

situa-

will follow

behaviors

that

di-

constitute

follow

for Atkin-

valence is primarily

dependent

on the intrinsic

value of succeeding

on how difficult a task is;

the more

the task,

difficult

valence. Actually,

an individual

the task with the highest probability

the higher

structure

a work

situation

that allows effective performance desired extrinsic

in a way

would eschew

of success would be so slight. Peo-

the highest

motivation;

it is also true that intrinsic

rewards are powerful motivators; we must include them in any theory of motivation.

a theory

tasks com-

of completion-thus

they are pre-

far we have looked

at two theories

one focuses on extrinsic

the other on intrinsic

rewards.

of

rewards,

These theories

tend to parallel two managerial

strategies

that

have been prominently advocated in management literature. The extrinsic approach Doug-

theory

of The

gan, in sharp contrast posed

moderate

Parallel strategies

Thus

Atkinson

tasks have

but they are not

ferred.

extrinsic

John

value,

bine fairly high reward value with reasonable probability

people will do things in the hope of obtaining

At&son’s

reward

rather than

to lead to the

rewards. While it is true that

rewards,

the

valence because the

likely to be completed;

should

at a task.

This value depends

intrinsic

that logi-

other

outcomes;

ple prefer to work on moderately,

theory is that we

For

a behavior-in

words, the second-order

very, difficult tasks. Very difficult

cally follows from Vroom’s

however,

by the extrinsic

There is one major shortcoming to Vroom’s theory: It pays scant attention to the he does a job well. The prescription

of

is determined.

effective performance.

awards that accrue to a person when

is deter-

times the valence of

valence

that

be-

probability

Vroom, valence is determined

been verified

for

the

The critical difference,

way

rewards

the message

that Atkinson to Vroom’s

that motivation

some outcome

they are used for scientists to make precise predictions. However, since the theory has by researchers,

variable

is similar

University with Vroom,

of achievement

primarily

on instrinsic

to ignore

extrinsic

of Michi-

motivation

rewards.

has pro-

las McGregor ment;

dubbed

Frederick

Winslow

focuses

scientific

management.

and tends

sumption

underlying

that

He argues

that

in order to determine a person’s motivation for a particular activity, we need to take three things into account: (1) his enduring personality orientation toward achieving success and avoiding failure, (2) the probability of his succeeding at that activity, and (3) the valence of success at the activity. Thus, apart

people will perform that

their

rewards

Theory

Taylor

The this

X managecalled

motivational approach

effectively are made

it as-

is that

.

to the extent contingent

on

effective performance. This approach put the assumption into practice through piece-rate payments. Workers’ paychecks were a direct reflection of their output. Another example of the use of contingent extrinsic rewards as a motivational technique is sales commissions

65

in which a salesman’s own pay is a percentage of his total

sales. Managers

are sometimes

with bonuses and other

Newer

contingently

systems. Heads of profit centers may

management,

be paid

in accord

Gregor)

the profits

units.

There

tween

the way it is used with

are differences,

of their

of course,

and the way it is used with upper management, upper-level

the most noteworthy workers

autonomy

be-

line workers levels of being that

have more freedom

and

in the way they do their jobs. Even

if rank-and-file

workers

lines, they generally

are not on assembly

are told how to do their

jobs in great detail-the

assumption

that there

is a best way to do any job being an essential part

of scientific

workers

management.

are allowed

much

Higher-level more

say about

the way they do their jobs, but of course they are held accountable Herbert

Meyer,

1975 issue of Organizational cussed

employees.

di&rlty

to

that it

The essence of the

satisfaction

for

the

instrinsic

doing

a job

rewards well-are

not

under the control of management and cannot be administered contingently. Furthermore, approaches

that

focus

in

on controlling

two

work

in their jobs

them

well. This

general

ways.

is

First, in the to par-

ticipate

receive much greater in a meaningful

way on important

issues related to their jobs, they become committed to carrying out the decisions. Second, jobs are restructured interesting

and

so that

they are more

challenging. with

activities

and resourcefulness, jobs from

which

When

people

that

require

and when they

they get feedback

on results, their response will be positive they will be more motivated

to perform

and effec-

tively. Research

of

ego-involved

to doing

latitude

is that some of the most important

rewards-namely

workers

stress the importance

way they do their jobs. Once allowed

perform

approach

to struc-

a desire to do well on the

and committed

Dynamics,

He concluded

has serious shortcomings.

approaches

creativity

dis-

Y Mc-

so that people will motivate

job. These

accomplished

re-

(Theory

by Douglas

that it is possible

from

in the Winter

the pay-for-performance

motivating

assumes

are challenged

for the results.

H.

management

themselves

workers

to instrinsic

as advocated

ture a situation

of getting

to management

attention

wards. Participative

rewarded incentive

with

approaches

have paid greater

head of The

by Rensis Likert,

University

formerly

of Michigan’s

Insti-

tute for Social Research, advocates the use of participation in decision making, goal setting, and performance the importance

reviews. of treating

His work

stresses

subordinates

in a

behavior through extrinsic rewards generally leave workers feeling unjustly treated be-

way that will lead them to perceive an experi-

cause the great

sense of personal

majority

sistently

overrate

quantity

of extrinsic

are legitimately

their

of employees performance

rewards

entitled.

con-

and the

to which

they

ence as supportive Patterns

and give them worth.

of Management

Organization,

Likert

a strong

In his books Nets and

reported

The

Human

several

large-

scale studies carried on by the institute that indicated that high-producing organizations tended to utilize these principles much more than low-producing

organizations.

The classic study of the impact of participation at Harwood-Weldon revealed marked increases in morale and modest in-

66

creases in productivity when more participative methods were employed. This research,

reported

Management

in

by

showed that comprehensive including

the

training

redesign

of reward

in interpersonal

problem

solving,

development crease

relations

along

program,

productivity.

Out

in

Weldon,

8 percent

an

at

could

and involved

workers

percent

Harwood-

to travel.

creative

should

extrinsic have

would

prescribe

that

jobs

to give employees

con-

in decision

Such jobs would

motivating

for workers.

on

In addition,

performers

rewards.

These

substantially

THE

PUZZLE

would

extrinsic

weaken

research

person’s

intrinsic

observed

motivation

hundreds

such

a system

would

to a

for an activity for perform-

laboratory

this question,

I have

of college students

in a

setting. I used a commercially

pro-

duced puzzle

interesting

work-

puzzles

called Soma that has seven dif-

ferently shaped, three-dimensional

pieces, each

of which is made to look as though posed of three or four one-inch used these puzzle configurations subjects found

extrinsi-

has in-

happens

extrinsically

ing on intrinsically

the

payments

that

What

To investigate

receive

workers

and extrinsically

however,

of

ing the activity?

for them.

work well because it would motivate time. Notice,

the usefulness

program

that had been drawn

Pilot

testing puzzle

it is com-

cubes. Subjects

pieces to reproduce clearly

various on paper

showed

solving highly

that

interest-

ing and enjoyable. In the experiments, ceived four configurations

both intrinsically

strat-

the past five years, I have conducted

the

cally. Presumably,

be a desirable

EXDERIMENTs

so that

contingent

be used to motivate

and

be intrinsically

be administered

most effective would

making

to be challenging

interesting.

most

route

issues related to them; furthermore,

would

would

when he is rewarded to

the best

be the preferred

jobs would be designed

rewards

advantages; It stands

strategy that combines

participation

important

approaches

theory

be structured

siderable

rewards

and

of ef-

that a motivational

This

extrinsic

is correct,

intrinsic

egy; if the third turns out to be true, then this

vestigated’ the question:

employees

aspects oE both would

leaves unmotivation.

of jobs in

motivator

each is effective to some degree. or managerial

increases, intrinsic

of joining

to de-

administra-

If either of the first two possibilities

an extensive

and

therefore,

rewards

decreases

then the prescription

During

the intrinsic

or

the prescription.

The best of both worlds?

reason,

changed,

Nonetheless,

to become

as a powerful

to motivating

tion of extrinsic

take it for granted) the contingent

the importance

fective performance.

Both

shouldn’t whether

would

and the redesign

ways that allow

to in-

certainly termine

be attributed

participation.

not underestimate

of participation

earnings-

a 30

of

productivity

clearly to increased we should

with

systems, and group

were necessary

improvement only

Participation,

change programs,

lowed ten minutes

each person

re-

to solve and was al-

to solve each one. If a sub-

workers

at the same

that this prescription

rests on the assumption that the two kinds of motivation are compatible, that added together, the effects are equal to, or greater than, the effects of the two taken necessary

to investigate

separately.

It is

this assumption

(we

67

ject was unable within

ten

to solve one of the puzzles

minutes,

he

was

stopped

shown how to do it. He then proceeded next puzzle.

and

from

within

themselves

to external

rewards.

to the

At the end of the session with

In an experiment and I conducted,

that Wayne

Cascio

some subjects were told that

the four puzzles, he was left alone in the room

if they were unable to solve any of the puzzles

to read magazines,

within

solve more puzzles,

whatever

he liked

ostensibly

was at a computer

reasoning

was that, if subjects

cally motivated,

while

the

or do

experimenter terminal.

The

were intrinsi-

when they were alone and

there were other sources of distraction, as reading

magazines.

Hence,

time they spent working

on the puzzles

they were alone was a measure trinsic motivation

ing

in-

learned

at the

session

that

receive one dollar for each of the

four puzzles minute

when

of their

of the experimental

they would

of

for this activity.

Some of the subjects beginning

such

the amount

that they solved within

period. Earnings

(which

took

the ten-

for the puzzle

about

ten minutes,

indicating

they would spend time work-

ing on the puzzles

solv-

expired. posure truly

a buzzer

They

were then given

to the buzzer noxious.

to realize

were performing

and

trinsic

motivation

wanted

to avoid a punishment

results

indicate

formed

under

that

the threat

also less intrinsically

who

the puzzles,

motivation

Because

crucial

sounding)

and

they

in doing

element

in decreasing

behavior,

intrinsic

become

causes (avoiding

merit),

and

intrinsic

working on the puzzles when they were alone in the room than did those who had worked

creased.

In

decreases

intrinsic

on the same puzzles

trinsically

had

been

paid

began

to receive

ments

for doing

spent

significantly

less time

for no pay. Once subjects contingent

an interesting

was

like the behavior

the paid subjects, had apparently who

experithe task.

in this experiment.

Their

upon performance The students

most

they received little or no punish-

on external

happened?

were

than subjects

no threats.

pendent

What

per-

of the buzzer

Thus it appears that threat of punishment the

(one dollar for each puzzle solved).

The

had

subjects were able to solve all or all but one of

sion. It is important

were contingent

they

(the buzzer).

motivated

who had received

paid to subjects in cash at the end of the sesto note that these money

of in-

because

subjects

little or no failure

and this was

it was subjects

because

also

ex-

but were given no threats of the buzzer.

enced

was over two dollars),

had

Other subjects were asked to solve the puzzles

to four dollars

average

that

these

the activity

(buzzer

(the

sound

sufficient

Consequently,

ment

from one dollar

would

that their time on that puzzle

20 or 30 minutes)

ranged

payments

68

shifted

their

summation,

de-

punish-

motivation

de-

process

that

one

motivation

motivated

of

is to have in-

behavior

become

de-

monetary

pay-

pendent

on external

causes such as tangible

activity,

their

rewards

like money

or avoidance

of punish-

intrinsic motivation to perform the activity apparently decreased; they were less willing to perform the activity in the absence of the external rewards than were the subjects who

ment. The perceived locus of causality shifts from within the person to the external reward

had not been paid. To some extent,

wards,

the paid

subjects had become dependent on external rewards (money), and their intrinsic motivation had decreased. In other words, the locus of causality of their behavior seems to have

and causes a decrease in intrinsic In the studies involving payment

was made

motivation. monetary

contingent

reupon

performance (one dollar for each puzzle solved). In another study, subjects were paid two dollars for participating in the experiment, regardless of their performance, and

they showed

no change

in intrinsic

tion. This seems consistent

with

in-the-perceived-locus-of-causality With

contingent

payments,

on it than did nonrewarded

proposition.

ceived no positive verbal feedback.

a subject’s

formance

of an activity is instrumental

receiving

a reward,

perceive rewards the activity. however,

to his

as the reason for performing payments, tied to per-

so he is less likely to perceive them

is less likely

to experience

Hence,

a decrease

ment

increases

he

in in-

trinsic motivation.

subjects

intrinsic

motivation,

what underlies

tion.

intrinsically

Being

an

an activity

extrinsic

fosters

This

but

means,

involves

it will lead to

rather

because

internal

feeds these his intrinsic

then, that external

it

feelings

and self-actualization.

any feedback that potential to affect

motiva-

motivated

individual’s

competence

we need

intrinsic

not because

reward

the

who re-

why verbal reinforce-

to reconsider doing

noncontingent are not directly

as the reason for his performance.

To understand

per-

so he is likely to come to

With

rewards

formance,

task more and spent more free time working

motiva-

the change-

of

Therefore, feelings has motivation. rewards

can

have at least two aspects. One is a “controlIMPACT OF FEEDBACK

ling” aspect, which pendent

We have demonstrated perceived

affects intrinsic involves

that a change

locus of causality motivation.

feedback.

A second process

With

the

verbal

fast for that puzzle.

jects increased positive

one”

verbal

were reinforced

each time motivation

they

solved

They

a

of these subenjoyed

de-

and self-actualization. money

and

aspect is quite

son’s mind

because

prominent

money

perceived

threats, and

as controllers

the

con-

in a perthreats

are

of behav-

ior. As a result, subjects become dependent

with

that’s very

because of their experience feedback.

trolling commonly

such as “Good,

The intrinsic

of

in one of the groups

on the puzzles statements

process

can be either

the individual

the other is an “in-

aspect, which affects his feelings

of competence

Through

Male subjects

formational”

is one process that

feedback, intrinsic motivation enhanced or diminished. working

in the

makes

on the reward;

with the

these controls even though ishment

and

lose intrinsic

earning

money or avoiding

could provide

formation

about

their

on

motivation pun-

them with positive competence

and

inself-

actualization. On the other hand,

a subject

is less

“ln szlmmdtion,one process tbdt decreasesintrinsic motivation is to have intrinsicdlly motivated behdvior becomedependenton external cdzlses szlcha tangible reweds like moneyor dvoiddnce of ptinishment.”

69

likely

to become

forcements

dependent

because

ceive feedback

on verbal

he is less likely

as the reason

rein-

to per-

for his perfor-

mance. Instead, feedback increases his feelings of competence

and self-actualization,

him more intrinsically circumstances

of course, a person

that

could

under become

dependent

on praise and thereby lose intrinsic

motivation.

In fact, in one of our experiments

this did happen subjects trinsic

motivation

did nonpraised trolling

subjects.

the praise

Apparently,

In

however,

when

and

other

females

were

ministered”

laboratory

than

positive

feedback,

were told that

was not as good as that of

people.

When

were told that most to do the task;

they

subjects

when

they

failed,

they

had been

able

succeeded,

they

they had completed as most

feedback

condition

motivation

than

“self-adperfor-

displayed subjects

less

who

intrinsic

had

not

re-

ceived any negative feedback. In summary, motivation

two processes: causality

we have seen that in-

appears

a change

and a change

to be affected

in perceived in feelings

tence and self-actualization.

locus of of compe-

Intrinsic

the key ingredient.

money or the avoidance of punishment. It also decreases when a person receives negative

tion,

feedback

conveys

it tends to decrease intrinsic

motiva-

but when

competent intrinsic when

and

positive

havior,

feedback

rather

use-their

subjects appear

is given

that

as information motivation

feedback

imagine

is negative;

ens it. Wayne

a situation logically

motivation

process that positive

for their will be in which

it should

through

motivated

reinforcement

as a result of positive

feedback

and interper-

Mark Lepper and David found

Greene

very

similar

Children

for an activity

of Stanford results

using

lost intrinsic and Greene

led to decreases

strength-

motivation

with

a

higher success rate. The poor performance probably diminished their feelings of competence and self-actualization, thereby decreasing their intrinsic motivation.

of the children.

children

preschool

perceived

also found

Under

for that

in intrinsic close super-

the task as some-

thing they did to please the teacher and/or avoid the teacher’s disapproval as an activity that was interesting Considerable

have

motivation

when they were rewarded

close supervision vision,

University

of Carnegie-Mellon

doing it. Lepper

Cascio and I did an experiment

easier puzzles

on an in-

But it increases

de-

a different and more difficult set of The subjects failed badly in solving

on somewhat

his performance activity.

be-

rewards such as

the same

these puzzles, and afterwards they were less intrinsically motivated than subjects who had worked

about

children.

crease intrinsic

utilizing puzzles.

feedback trinsically

their be-

enhanced. Now

on extrinsic

behavior

sonal supportiveness.

to subordi-

to control

intrinsic

are

it increases

It would

in an attempt but

that

self-determining,

motivation.

nates-not own

it conveys

comes dependent

a person’s

motiva-

mance and confidence increased. Thus we see that the meaning of feedback to subjects is When

when

by

tion decreases

control,

70

other

trinsic

well at a

their

in one group

their performance

for

experiments,

receiving

subjects

other subjects. These subjects in the negative

the con-

performed

therefore

we found that

the task, they did not do it as quickly

less in-

aspect of praise was quite salient

females. task

displayed

following

ment,

were told that although

to our female subjects. Female

who were praised

experiment

negative verbal feedback also caused a decrease in intrinsic motivation. In this experi-

most

motivated.

It is possible, some

leaving

In another

to

rather than in itself.

research has also shown

that when threats of punishment

are used as

the external controls, they have the additional disadvantage of eliciting emotional responses and inducing anxiety in the person who is being punished. The work of the behaviorists

such as B. F. Skinner

sirable

the fact

In short, this method

an undesired

behavior

is an

behavior

way of eliminating

it. The

unde-

systems.

that punishing ineffective

has documented

behavior

punishment

continues

to reappear,

causes disturbing

These

and

emotional

reac-

tions.

through

focuses on controlling

the use of extrinsic systems,

problems.

Often

formance

objectively

however,

appropriate.

and

looking, These

experimental

counter

results

motivation. in

real-life

under

settings

of most

people,

will always increase

The results will need to be repli-

methodologies. up

are new and run

to the expectations

who believe that rewards cated

Further,

cat-and-mouse

situations

using

Nonetheless,

several

they

replications

The question

results apply to ongoing

held

in laboratory

and as such are important

take seriously.

differing have enough

to

is, how do these

organizational

situa-

fairly;

To

understand

the

importance

these results for organizations, to distinguish

between

the job and motivating

keeping

a person

him to perform

on

effec-

the mouse

means of beating larger

rewards

ward systems become thus

their

for them.

An

additional

tingent

On focuses

the boss constantly when

he will

not remain

an intrinsic

a person’s

not ignore

does not ensure

that he will

for motivating ternal

rewards.

seem to hold promise

employees. Using

One focuses on ex-

such a system necessi-

and

various

will

motivating

but it seems to be

the effort. One should approach extrinsic fringe

systems

competently.

intrinsically

jobs takes careful planning,

Satisfying

to have

mouse

out of ego-involve-

to perform

are not satisfied,

methods

of needing The

that

workers

With intrinsic

themselves

and a desire

a system

the cat is away if he is

motivated.

needs

Two

that

the intrin-

motivating

present.

well worth

perform effectively.

hand,

does not face the problem

working

needs, however,

disadvantage

on intrinsically

quate

organization.

against

rather than

of workers. the other

Of course, designing

the

to people;

to work

systems may be decreasing

will have to be paid a competitive salary and selected fringe benefits, be provided with ade-

in

begins

re-

we’ve seen from my studies is that these con-

ment

and so on. If his

Contingent

the interests of their organizations

tion, it is necessary

conditions,

of getting

a challenge

creativity

people motivate

He

to devise

the system-ways for less work.

To attract and keep a person in an organizato satisfy his needs.

the cat isn’t

over the years have demonstrated)

intrinsically

them.

When

(as many studies

question,

confuse

is

may even use their creativity

go on working

people often

of a reward

In fact, workers

tively on that job. The two are not the same though

perit is

plays.

of

it is necessary

hence

the systems run into the

problem.

sic motivation

tions ?

present

it is difficult to measure

not easy to decide how much IMPLICATIONS

control

note that

to management rewards. benefits

Equitable

does pay

are, of course,

necessary to keep and attract high-quality

em-

ployees. But managers

not

to try controlling

should

subordinates

wards. As we saw, when

be careful

with these re-

these rewards

were

tates making rewards contingent upon performance. In order for money, promotions, and

not tied directly to performance, they did not decrease a person’s intrinsic motivation.

other rewards to motivate mance, these rewards must

effective perforbe administered

The dilemma is this: To use rewards as an extrinsic motivator of performance, one

so that the more effective his perthe more rewards a person receives.

must make these rewards directly contingent upon performance. However, doing so de-

selectively formance,

71

creases intrinsic noncontingent

motivation.

Making

upon performance

terfere with intrinsic

motivation;

rewards

them

more

ing workers

but neither

affect the nature

challenging

to participate

and allow-

in decisions

of their jobs-in

as work schedules and pace, output

intrinsic

motivation

of substance

in extrinsic

timing

motivation

and extrinsic

other words, is the increment

motivation ment

greater than the concomitant

in intrinsic

motivation?

If a job has to

for example,

interesting,

necessary

be to redesign rewarding. undoubtedly However,

Which depends anyone

on a variety

for more

give considerable

attention

tion. This does not mean wards Rather,

noncontingent it involves

in organizations

that

motiva-

programs

redesigning

and

jobs

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

The ideas presented in this paper are abridged from one part of Edward Deci’s book Zn~rz’nsic Motivation (Plenum Publishing Co., 1975). Victor Vroom’s classic study Work and Motivation (John Wiley and Sons, 1964) is now over ten years old but is still a valuable reference source. The work on participative management at the Harwood and Weldon companies is reported by David Bowers, Stanley Seashore, and

organization.

utilizing

To install will involve

and

subordi-

of various However,

major efforts toward developing fully

are now

simply making reupon performance.

that include

system

managers

of the

systems

change

oriented

of both

pects

structure

sophisti-

and provide

payments.

of factors.

to intrinsic

planned

reeducation

motivation

best

theorists

sophisticated

an intrinsically

more

that focus heavily on the

as well as restructuring

will do well to keep this trade-off in mind. calling

cated systems-ones

to get it

a personnel

as the

deal of careful

and effort to install

nates

strategy or setting up a compensation Most management

It will take a good planning

noncontingent

might

such trivia

of coffee breaks.

equitable,

will work

who is devising

than

of intrinsic

however,

approach

rather

utilization

the job to make it intrinsically

standards,

and so on; in short, matters

be

it may

to pay people contingently

done well. A better strategy,

criteria,

decre-

be done and there is no one who finds it intrinsically

quality

that

such areas

will it motivate extrinsically. Thus there is a trade-off between the effects of rewards on -in

72

to make

will not in-

asthese

organizations

human resources more . . seem to be critical for more effective

organizations.

their

Individuals

will be more motivated have a greater control.

And

in the organization

and satisfied;

sense of self-worth the organization

they will and

self-

will be better

able to meet its own goals because the members of the organization

will be performing

more effectively.

Alfred Marrow in Management by Participation (Harper and Row, 1967). Rensis Likert’s two books, New Patterns of Management (McGraw-Hill, 1961) and The Human Organization (McGraw-Hill, 1967) describe his basic approach to management-what he calls System 4-and document the reasons why he believes

it is the most effective

manage-

ment strategy.

’ If you have not already, Meyer’s

“The

(Organizational

read Herbert Pay for Performance Dilemma” Dynamics, Winter 1975).