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What is the relationship

between motivation, morale, and performance in this example?

Pat and Terry processed the lateral move differently. Since this company job change was the same for both, the difference in how they processed it could have a lot to do with physiology or intrinsic motivation and how each deal with change. Pat welcomes the challenge, looking at the opportunities available in his new department, whereas, Terry is resisting the change by seeing it as a punishment. Pat’s morale is high; therefore, his motivation and performance will be high as well. However, Terry has low morale and will have low motivation and performance levels. 

Who is responsible for keeping Pat and Terry motivated?

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The responsibility for Pat and Terry’s motivation levels are dually shared by both themselves and their managers. From this short description, it appears little will need to be changed with regard to Pat and his motivation, however, Terry and his manager will have some work to do in that regard. Terry is having trouble overcoming the change, therefore, Terry’s manager will need to find a way to get Terry out of his low spot and into a more positive light. One way his manager could approach this would be to find out why Terry feels “slapped in the face” and empower Terry to come up with a plan to improve his outlook. Bruce (2012, p. 74), in our textbook, says “it makes good sense to transfer the responsibility for staying motivated to individual employees—because that’s where it lies in the first place.” Therefore, by allowing Terry to create his own plan to increase his motivation, the ownership and chance for success increase.

Building from previously discussed motivational theories (Module Two) and psychological theories, determine approaches that could be implemented to increase motivation, morale, and performance for both Pat and Terry.

Expectancy theory could be utilized in identifying clear goals with tasks that lead to the goal and matching rewards. Goal theory could be utilized in identifying reasonable goals along with specific path to reach the goal and reward. Also, McClelland’s Achievement Motivation theory would be helpful for a manager to utilize. Once Pat and Terry’s primary motivators were identified (achievement and affiliative, most likely), the manager would identify ways to motivate each of them based on these primary motives. 


Dinibutun, S. (2012). Work Motivation: Theoretical Framework. Journal on GSTF Business Review, 1(4). doi:10.5176/2010-4804_1.4.138

Georgopoulos, B. S., Mahoney, G. M., & Jones, N. J. (1957). A path-goal approach to productivity. Journal Of Applied Psychology41(6), 345-353. doi:10.1037/h0048473

J. T.D., C. (2009). Managers Empowering Employees. American Journal Of Economics And Business Administration, Vol 1, Iss 2, Pp 41-46 (2009), (2), 41. doi:10.3844/ajebasp.2009.41.46


The situation between Pat and Terry is not uncommon, and I have personally experienced a somewhat similar situation in a previous job. Pat and Terry are likely motivated by somewhat different aspects of the workplace considering the difference in reactions to being split up. In the example, Terry seems highly motivated by having Pat to work with, while Pat does not seem as directly influenced by having Terry to work with. In turn, the changes have caused Terry to have low morale and motivation, and will likely result in lower production, because Terry feels negatively toward the change. Considering these details, it is likely that Terry is highly influenced by social factors within the workplace (Bruce, 2011).

In contrast, Pat is likely to be influenced by other factors not associated with Terry or other social aspects, considering the separation did not negatively impact his work ethic and he actually became more motivated. He may thrive more on intrinsic motivators and sees this as an chance for personal improvement and opportunity over working with someone else. Pat also may have become bored with the previous set-up, explaining why he was so excited for the change and new possibilities.

It is important for Pat and Terry’s supervisor to understand each of their unique motivational factors, both internal and external, and reasonably take action to meet certain needs and keep them motivated. To understand each person’s distinctive needs, their supervisor could use Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs as one reference. Terry is much more motivated by establishing a sense of belongingness than Pat. To meet Terry’s social needs, the supervisor can provide numerous accommodations, including replacing Pat with another partner for Terry, making sure Terry works in plenty of group activities, including him in group decisions, and involving him in major contributions towards the company. This will give Terry plenty of other people to socialize with, have opportunities for leadership, and feel personally involved within the company. By also meeting these needs, it is highly likely that motivation, morale, and production will all increase from Terry, assuming other, more basic, needs are also being met.

Pat is likely higher on Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, with motivation focusing more on esteem than belongingness. For Pat, it would be best to provide plenty of occasions for self-improvement and advancement to keep him motivated and genuinely interested.


Bruce, A. (2011). Manager’s guide to motivating employees (2nd ed.). New York, NY: McGraw Hill.

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