Essays on Vrooms Expectancy Theory of Motivation Literature review

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The paper “ Vrooms Expectancy Theory of Motivation ” is an intriguing variant of the literature review on human resources. The expectancy theory developed by victor vroom in 1964 mainly deals with motivation and management whereby managers are advised to secure a well and motivated workforce. The essence perceived to surround this theory is mainly on the action and behaviors of staff are based on the objective of minimizing pain and maximizing pleasures. According to Miner (2005), this model consists of elements namely, valence, instrumentality, and expectancy.   Valence is defined as the strength displayed by an individual in obtaining a predesigned outcome.

Valence is said to be positive when a person greatly prefers to attain a particular outcome to not attaining it. When this same individual displays an indifferent attitude valence is perceived to be zero (Miner, 2005).   Instrumentality based on Vroom model is defined as belief displayed by an individual to accomplish any given task thus attainment of a valued reward after completion. Vroom explains that instrumentality is considered to be high, usually when an employee believes engaging in certain actions will automatically result in attaining reward valued by her.

Finally, expectancy mainly relates to what level of confidence does an individual has in accomplishing predesigned objectives satisfactorily. It further goes ahead to indicate that if an individual does not believe he is competent then he may not be feasible to obtain desired rewards (Darmon, 2004). Clearly Vroom's expectancy theory assumes that different behaviors among people are usually a result of conscious choices that are made among several alternatives.   It suggests that the relationship described individual behavior while working and their predesigned goals are not as simple as assumed by scientists.

In a real sense, employee performance during work is mainly connected to personal attributes such as personality, experience, abilities, knowledge, and skills (Lawler & Vroom, 2009).   An individual is perceived to have a wide range of goals that are usually motivated when certain expectations are put in place. The theory further predicts that employees tend to believe they are motivated if;   more effort is placed so as to yield good performance and good performance will endure rewards such as an increase in salary are issued (Banks, 2007). Vroom further indicates that when expectancy, valence, and instrumentality are significantly met, a certain motivational force occurs among employees.   This force is known to exert pressure on an individual performing a particular task within an organization thus motivation is gained.

  According to Lawler & Vroom (2009), the larger the motivational force, the more a person is motivated to attain defined outcomes of a specific job. It is correct if we state that the motivational force will remain high as long as valence, expectancy, and instrumentality are high and the vice versa is true.

Further research on Vroom's expectancy theory indicates that among the many factors known to influence life expectancy for example ability, perception, and interest, perception is considered to be more of significance. Perception is defined as that engine that usually drives individual performance, outcome, and effort (Droar, 2006).   Motivational Force (MF) =Expectancy× Instrumentality× Valence ExampleEvidently, my working in a multinational organization gave me a clear indication of the implication of what vrooms motivational theory describes. Lawler & Vroom (2009) asserts that, constantly, a motivated employee is normally as a result of perceived great levels of satisfaction, confidence displayed in achieving and variety of rewards that this employee hopes to receive after completing a certain task or achieve various stipulated goals.

After a clear follow up on various employees' expectancy levels under my managerial viewpoint, it was obvious that expectancy was widely defined when an individual is able to strengthen his conviction in relation to his ability in attaining predesigned goals Lawler & Vroom (2009).     Further, most employees when rewarded through increased salary tended to account for organization performance satisfactory.

Being in a managerial position, I was also forced into creating more effort as part to yield desired yields. According to Isaac & Pitt (2001), the issue of confidence within one inner self is needed.     It is obvious that a self -proclaimed achiever is considered to be more confident when performing his duties thus perfect performance whereas that of a skeptical entirely consists of a much different perspective. Further, an employee who feels that most of his effort does not yield results in terms of attaining stipulated goals is likely to automatically lack or have less expectancy.

The probability of this eventuality can only assume value zero and one (Fang, 2008).   A manager's ability to understand Vroom's theory of motivation can portray a useful workforce in workplaces.   For instance, an instrument widely links upon three main beliefs of followers.   Firstly, a follower needs to trust that a manager will be able to deliver what he has promised. It is from these promises that an employee is able to be motivated according to Vrooms.   Secondly, managers are required to make sure that employees are able to receive fair treatment at all times.

Fang (2008) asserts that it is essential that an employee action is associated with a particular type of treatment. Clearly, a manager is a key determinant especially when analyzing employees' instrumentality. Based on valence, there are two distinct issues that managers are required to concern with. Firstly, it is very essential that managers realize that values tend to vary differently amongst people. A manager should at foremost be able to identify value exhibited by each outcome from an employee perspective (Stecher & Rosse, 2007).   Different kind of reward within the organization is known to effect on motivation differently.   Rewards that range from time off, money, promotion, and praise may be used as motivational elements by different employers.

Rewards such as praise and appreciation may not cost much but in the real sense, Vroom perceives them as highly motivational tools. Once a manager has been able to identify what outcome is required, a motivational force equation can be used to determine the extent of employee performance.   The second issue entails a manager or leader to put a lot of determination into a predesigned alignment on employee personal goals and that of the perceived organization.

Researches indicate that the pairing of these described issues serves crucial importance in workforce motivation (Wilson & Gilbert, 2005). RecommendationsIt is recommendable that employee goals and objectives run congruent to those of their organizations.   Clearly, employee motivational force is widely associated with receiving of outcomes that are normally high in valence with a vision of furthering organizational interests. It is obvious that a manager's ability to motivate employees should first and foremost begin with understanding valence pertained by different individuals.

Further, it is very recommendable that managers or employers are able to identify different factors that normally affect the employee’ s motivation. Although Vroom theory indicates that motivational factors may vary from one employee to another, it is very essential that an employer is able to create a neutral ground when issuing out of any form of motivational factor. Selecting and distinguishing various variables clearly results in the establishment of a reward system that is usually effective and contributes positively towards organizational goals, vision, and mission.

  A manager or employer may use performance result to determine if motivational system established within an organization is creating a positive change or one which is negative. In order to ensure that performance works hand in hand with the outcome, managers are required to come up with systems which only offer reward in relation to employee performance.   Further, managers are required to improve employees’ effort and performance by way of constantly offering training. Training will always ensure that employees are able to realize and learn about their in-built skills which are normally achieved while working.   Training will always ensure better performance is achieved thus an organization will always be ahead of its competitors ConclusionIn conclusion, it is obvious that the Vroom expectancy theory has been accepted by most organizations across the globe since they greatly influence decision making.

Clearly, most employees found in organizations are able to perform well if widely motivated. Organizations can assist in motivation by ensuring that all three elements of vrooms motivational theory are highly utilized.

If only two or one of these elements is implemented then, an employee will not be able to perform satisfactorily due to lack of proper motivation. Vroom motivational theory clearly brings out the essence in the strength of the tendency to act or perform in accordance with the expectation which is usually followed up with a perceived outcome towards the organization thus the determination of efficacy.   Most employees within an organization, who normally see clear paths in the attainment of goals normally, have placed a defined trust toward his manager that after a particular action he or she will be rewarded accordingly.


Banks, C. (2007). Met Expectations Hypothesis: The use of Direct Measures to Develop Participant Surveys. Online Journal of Workforce Education and Development, Volume II, Issue 4

Darmon, Y. (2004). The Measurement of Sales Force Motivation Revisited, ESSEC Business School

Droar, D. (2006). Expectancy theory of motivation. Retrieved April 18, 2011, from

Fang, C. (2008). The moderating effect of impression management on the organizational politics performance relationship. Journal of Business Ethics, 79(3).

Isaac, R. & Pitt, D. (2001). Leadership and motivation: The effective application of expectancy theory. Journal of Managerial Issues, 13(2), 212-226.

Lawler, E.& Vroom, V. (2009). Motivation and management Vroom's expectancy theory. Value Based Management Website. Retrieved April 18, 2011, from

Miner, J. (2005). Organizational behavior I: Essential theories of motivation and leadership. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe.

Stecher, M., & Rosse, J. (2007). Understanding reactions to workplace injustice through process theories of motivation: A teaching module and simulation. Journal of Management Education, 31(6), 781.

Wilson, T & Gilbert, T. (2005). Affective forecasting: Knowing what to want. Current Directions in Psychological Science, 14, 131-134.

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