Expectancy Theory
(Vroom)

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Summary
Expectancy Theory

What is Expectancy Theory? Description

The Expectancy Theory of Victor Vroom deals with motivation and management. Vroom's theory assumes that behavior is a result from conscious choices among alternatives. The purpose of the choices is to maximize pleasure and minimize pain. Together with Edward Lawler and Lyman Porter, Vroom suggested that the relationship between people's behavior at work and their goals was not as simple as was first imagined by other scientists. Vroom realized that an employee's performance is based on individual factors such as personality, skills, knowledge, experience and abilities.


The expectancy theory says that individuals have different sets of goals and can be motivated if they have certain expectations.


Expectancy Theory expectations

  • There is a positive correlation between efforts and performance,
  • Favorable performance will result in a desirable reward,
  • The reward will satisfy an important need,
  • The desire to satisfy the need is strong enough to make the effort worthwhile.

Vroom's Expectancy Theory is based upon the following three beliefs.


Expectancy Theory beliefs

  1. Valence. Refers to the emotional orientations which people hold with respect to outcomes [rewards]. The depth of the want of an employee for extrinsic [money, promotion, free time, benefits] or intrinsic [satisfaction] rewards. Management must discover what employees appreciate.

  2. Expectancy. Employees have different expectations and levels of confidence about what they are capable of doing. Management must discover what resources, training, or supervision the employees need.

  3. Instrumentality. The perception of employees whether they will actually receive what they desire, even if it has been promised by a manager. Management must ensure that promises of rewards are fulfilled and that employees are aware of that.

Vroom suggests that an employee's beliefs about Expectancy, Instrumentality, and Valence interact psychologically. In this way they create a motivational force, such that the employee will act in a way that brings pleasure and avoids pain. This force can be 'calculated' via a formula:


Expectancy Theory formula


Motivation = Valence x Expectancy(Instrumentality).


This formula can be used to indicate and predict things as: job satisfaction, occupational choice, the likelihood of staying in a job, and the effort that one might expend at work.


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🔥 NEW Why People Want to Become Leaders? Motivation to Lead
Leadership roles in an organization are obviously pivotal to the successful and smooth functioning of the organization i (...)
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20 comments
Effort Leads to Performance
This is true in most cases, the more you put in the more you get out but there are times when this is not the case.
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Motivating an Employee by Expectancy
According to Vroom, Expectancy is the 'momentary belief concerning the likelihood that a particular act will be followed (...)
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1 comments
Misunderstandings About Motivation
Motivation is found to be hard by many people. I would like to put across a number of misconceptions around motivation:< (...)
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Human Motivation Lies Within
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Creative Chaos is Conducive to Motivation
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Measuring Motivation:The PIAV Assessment
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Expectancy versus Needs?
There are many different ways to reach goals, but I believe that the NEEDS have more weight than the EXPECTANCY. So what (...)
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2 comments
Motivation Should be a Two-way Process
I think the motivation process between the manager and the employees is exchangeable, i.e. bosses should motivate their (...)
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Marrying Employee and Employer Goals and Expectations
This is the one theory that seeks to marry employee value proposition (goals and expectations) to the employer's (effect (...)
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Motivating Workers: McGregor´s Example
I believe that success in motivating employees is well explained in McGregor´s example in which, to the question: "What (...)
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Problems with ET. Disadvantages
A problem with ET is that it breaks down if employee does not believe in the motivation or reward. Then o (...)
2
 
What Precisely is Valence? Definition of Valence
Hi, for me it's hard to understand "valence"? It's not in my English dictionary. Can you give me some help? (...)
2
 
2 comments
Motivation for Success
In my opinion, success comes from loving what you do. Is your current work your passion? When you study highly successfu (...)
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Can Perpetual Demotivation Be Reversed?
Demotivation is like the decomposition process, once it has started, the tale-tale signs remains in spite of whatever vi (...)
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How to Align Vroom's Theory with Psychological Contract in Disengaged Employees?
Has anyone/organisation successfully achieved meaningful employee motivation applying the Vroom formula in appraisal sys (...)
-3
 

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The top-rated topics about the Expectancy Theory. Here you will find the most valuable ideas and practical suggestions.


How Can You Motivate Knowledge Workers?
In the current 'knowledge era', the question what motivates knowledge workers, and, being a manager, how you should mot (...)
62
 
37 comments

What Motivates Employees? The Answer Depends (Partly) on their Generation
The age of retirement has been moved to 60, 65, 70 years and beyond. Where each generation used to pass the baton; there (...)
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50 comments

Working hard for a raise?
A consequence that should not be overlooked of the formula M = V * E * I is that even if only one of the 3 elements is z (...)
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3 comments

Motivation in Non-Profit Organizations
I'm having difficulties finding a theory to help me research motivation, and the importance of it, in a non-profit organ (...)
20
 
5 comments

What is the distinguishing ratio?
My problem with this theory is that there is no distinguishing ratio as to the level of performance that leads to a part (...)
19
 
Is your Job Meaningful?
Finding a purpose in your job is important for millennials and in fact for everybody.
Nevertheless, many people hav (...)
17
 
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Controlling the Minds of Employees
I think there can be several way to achieve goals, however what's more important is to have control over the mind of the (...)
17
 
6 comments

Extended Version of the ET (Lambright)
Lambright (2010) addresses an important weakness of the ET: it makes no distinction between certainty and (...)
15
 
Motivating an Employee by Valence
According to Vroom, Valence refers to a preference for one outcome over another. It can be positive, neutral or negative (...)
14
 
3 comments

Theory of Needs by Maslow versus Vroom's ET
Unlike the Theory of Needs by Maslow, Vroom's ET (ET) does NOT a priori assumes there are certain needs p (...)
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Motivation is Owned by the Individual
Motivation is a slippery slope. I believe Wlodkowski who says: one cannot directly motivate another since motivation is (...)
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5 comments

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Advanced insights about the Expectancy Theory. Here you will find professional advices by experts.


4 Steps to Motivate your Employees...

Using ET in your Department / Group
As a manager, you can motivate your employees applying ET. Take these 4 steps: 1. Find out what each ind (...)

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The Effort -> Performance Relationship

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Paid and unpaid workers in hybrid organizations Although financial considerations are an important reason to work for a (...)
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Various sources of information regarding the Expectancy Theory. Here you will find powerpoints, videos, news, etc. to use in your own lectures and workshops.


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Compare with the Expectancy Theory on Motivation with:  Hierarchy of Needs  |  Servant-Leadership  |  Theory of Needs  |  Hawthorne Effect  |  Competing Values Framework  |  Attribution Theory  |  Framing  |  Two Factor Theory Herzberg   |  Theory X Theory Y  |  Managerial Grid  |  ERG Theory  |  Leadership Continuum  |  Path-Goal Theory  |  Leadership Styles  |  Situational Leadership  |  EPIC ADVISERS  |  Coaching  |  Mentoring


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