Porter and Lawler (1968) developed a complex model in their influential book, Managerial Attitudes and Performance, which consisted of four interrelated variables: (1) effort (work motivation), (2) job performance, (3) rewards received from performance (intrinsic and extrinsic rewards), (4) job satisfaction. The Porter-Lawler model also suggests that employee motivation depends upon two variables: the degree to which employees value certain rewards and employees’ belief that their efforts will result in their receiving of these rewards. This model integrated ideas of the expectancy theory and equity theory.
According to the expectancy theory, an employee will be motivated to exert a high level of effort when he or she believes the following: that the effort will lead to good performance; that good performance will lead to organizational rewards; that the rewards will satisfy his or her personal goals. Expectancy can be expressed as a probability. It is the belief that increased work effort will lead to desirable outcomes. This is affected by such things as: having the right resources available (e.g. raw materials, time); having the right skills to do the job; having the necessary support to get the job done (e.g. supervisor support, or correct information on the job).
As to effort-to-performance relationship, efforts of an employee depend on his or her individual differences. In Porter-Lawler model, the concept that individuals’ abilities and role perceptions moderate the relationship between effort and performance is emphasized. Employees are sometimes asked to do things for which they do not have the appropriate skills. When that is the case, they will be less motivated to try hard, because they already believe they will not be able to accomplish the required task.
Based on my previous work experiences, I encountered such situations when I worked at the Department of Accounting of a high-tech enterprise as an intern. Since it was approaching the end of the...