Essays on Locke And Latham's Goal Setting Theory Essay

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The paper 'Locke And Latham's Goal Setting Theory' is a good example of a Management Essay. Goal setting can be defined as the process of motivating employees and clarifying their role perceptions by establishing performance objectives. The process of setting goals has been replicated the world over and many influential kinds of literature in management have several proposals on goal setting. Many studies that have been conducted in different contexts underscore the importance of setting very specific and challenging goals as it is said that this acts as a powerful way of boosting the performance of an organization (Barsky, 2008).

Following a series of studies, Locke and Latham came up with what has become a very preferred theory of goal setting. As such it has been rightly called the goal-setting theory. When an individual engages in the act of setting a goal, it is an indication that they are discontent with their current conditions and for this reason, they seek to achieve a particular objective which they deem necessary to change their conditions to be better. Barsky (2008), states that the individuals develop an effect towards the goal that they have set which is a necessary aspect of goals acting since the goals that one sets act as the standards to gauge their satisfaction with the performance.

The pursuit of goals and the realization of one’ s ability to meet them creates feelings of success in the workplace (Galinsky, Mussweiler, & Medvec, 2002). It has been argued that the setting higher goals act as motivation for an individual to work harder than moderate or vague goals do. The setting of goals coupled with the relevant skill in one's particular field of skill is arguably the best way of motivating an individual towards higher performance.

This is because goals not only motivate a person to make use of their existing ability but they also pull the stored knowledge and skills to one’ s awareness or even in other circumstances make an individual to get new knowledge to tackle the new task that confronts them (Drach-Zahavy & Erez, 2002). According to the theory, goals can be effective even when they come from different sources or set jointly through participation.

In this light, an employee who has been employed as a salesperson is bound to set goals if indeed they wish to be successful in their career as a salesperson. The goals that they set may make or break their career. A manager who is helping such an employee to set their goals is going to have to look at various factors before together with the employee they are able to set realistic and achievable goals for the salesperson in question. For the goals to act as a motivation towards a higher performance for the salesperson, he or she must own the goals that have been set.

Thus the manager will do well to consider his experience and skill in terms of sales and find out how much he or has been able to sell in their past jobs. This will be necessary in order to gauge their ability as a salesperson (Barsky, 2008). This can act as a good guide as to what will be a high or difficult goal, moderate goal, and vague goal.

This is because all these vary with an individual’ s ability. Once high but realistic goals that are achievable are set, then the salesperson is bound to achieve them. The achievement of these goals is going to result in personal gratitude and more job satisfaction which are important in instilling confidence. Thus regarding the Lock and Latham goal-setting theory, the salesperson who sets hard but realistic goals is bound to get motivation once these goals are achieved.

References

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Galinsky, A. D., Mussweiler, T., & Medvec, V. H. (2002). Disconnecting outcomes and evaluations: The role of negotiator focus. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 83(5), 1131-1140. Retrieved from

http://social-cognition.uni-koeln.de/scc4/research/judgment/documents/jpsp83.pdf

Latham, G. P., & Locke, E. A. (2006). Enhancing the Benefits and Overcoming the Pitfalls of Goal Setting. Organizational Dynamics , 35(4), 332-340. Retrieved from http://www.gpworldwide.com/quick/nov2006/art5.asp

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