Types of Motivation 

Nature of Motivation, Meaning, Definition, Types

Table of Contents:

Nature of Motivation

The nature of motivation is as follows:

1) Psychological Concept

The person’s activation depends upon the perceived needs and expectations. The process of motivation, which is mainly concerned with desires, needs, expectations, satisfaction, and confidence, is a psychological phenomenon. The psychology of every person is different from others and therefore it is very difficult to ascertain in practice what methods and purposes will motivate a person towards desired goals.

2) Continuous Process

Human wants are unlimited. With the satisfaction of one want, another want of the higher order is created. Thus, new wants arise when the present wants are fulfilled. Moreover, all the wants cannot be satisfied at the same time, they are to be satisfied one after another continuously. So, it is an ongoing and never-ending process.

3) Dynamic and Situational

The ideas, performance and aims all are dynamic. The things that motivate a person today may not motivate him tomorrow. His drives, expectations, needs, and value judgment keep changing and hence the process of motivation is extremely dynamic. 

Inspiration is also situational in a set of organizational structure, climate, physical facilities, and nature of work, a person may be deeply motivated, but any change in them may affect his stimulus.

4) Not Easily Observed Phenomenon

The actions of a person can be observed and then we try to understand the actions which constitute his behaviour in terms of his underlying motivations and fulfilment. In this analysis, there can be many misunderstandings.

5) Goal-Oriented Process

Proper and effective stimulus inspires people to contribute their best towards the realisation of their individual goals as well as organisational goals.

6) Influenced by Social and Cultural Norms

Social and cultural norms, customs, values, and traits play an essential role in stimulation. If society attaches respect, acceptance, and recognition to a job or organisation, a person is motivated toward that job or organization.

nature of motivation

Motivation Meaning

Motivation is derived from the word ‘motive’. Motive refers to the drives, needs, impulses, and wants within a person that induces him to continue in the course of action enthusiastically. 

It may be defined as the complex process of stimulating a person to achieve desired goals and to perform actions by using his maximum capabilities for the achievement of certain objectives. Stimulation includes promoting desires and needs in individuals to initiate and direct their behaviour in a purposive manner. It is a psychological phenomenon that arises from the feeling of the needs and wants of individuals. It causes goal-directed behaviour.

Motivation can be described as the driving force within people that drives them to perform actions. This driving force is generated by tension, which exists as a result of unsatisfied needs. Consciously and subconsciously people try both ways to reduce their tension through behaviour that they anticipate will fulfil their needs and thus free them of the stress they feel.

Related Article:- Nature of Organisational Behaviour

Motivation Definition

According to Dalton E. McFarland, “Motivation refers to how urges desires, drives, strivings, aspirations or needs direct, control or explain the behaviour of human beings”.

As per S.P. Robbins, “Motivation is the willingness to exert high levels of effort toward organisational goals, conditioned by the effort and ability to satisfy some individual need”.

According to Likert, “Motivation is the core of management which shows that every human being gives him a sense of worth in face-to-face groups which are most important to him. A supervisor should strive to treat individuals with dignity and recognition of their worth”.

Definition of Motivation

The term motivation has been defined in various ways some definitions of motivation are given below:

Feist and Rosenberg (2015, p. 397) define motivation as “the urge to move towards one’s goals, to accomplish tasks”.

Quick, Nelson and Khandelwal (2013, p. 172) defined motivation as “the process of arousing and sustaining goal-directed behaviour”.

Feldman (2015, p. 287) defined motivation as “the factors that direct and energize the behaviour of humans and other organisms”.

Morgan et al (1993, p. 268) define motivation as “the driving and pulling forces which result in persistent behaviour directed toward particular goals”.

Chamorro-Premuzic (2015, p. 272) defined motivation as “an internal state, dynamic rather than static in nature, that propels action, directs behaviour and is oriented toward satisfying both instincts and cultural needs and goals”.

Petri (1996) defines motivation as “the process by which activities are started, directed and continued so that physical or psychological needs or wants are met”.

Nolen-Hoeksema et al (2009, p. 419) describe motivation as “a condition that energizes behaviour and gives it direction”.

Analyzing the above definitions, we can say that motivation is an internal force that drives individuals into some action or behaviour. It is a process of having a goal-directed orientation. It is dynamic, which energizes an individual to pursue a goal.

Types of Motivation 

Generally, there are two types of motivation.

  1. Positive motivation and 
  2. Negative motivation

Stimulation can be classified on the following bases, some of the important types of motivation are as follows: 

  • Positive and Negative Motivation
  • Rational and Emotional Motivation
  • Primary and Secondary Motivation
  • Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation
  • Financial and Non Financial Motivation

1) Positive and Negative Motivation

i) Positive Motivation

This type of motivation tries to create an optimistic and supportive environment in the organization. Positive motivation is that such type of stimulus involves identifying an employee’s potential and making him realise the possible result by achieving his potential. Individuals are considered positively motivated when they receive a reward and are guided on how to attain it. Compensation for employees can take the form of both financial and non-financial rewards.

ii) Negative Motivation

An individual can get the desired work done by instilling fear in the minds of other people. In this method of inspiration, the fear of results always keeps the worker in the desired direction. This method has several limitations. Fear produces frustration, a hostile state of mind and an unfavourable attitude towards the job which hinders productivity and efficiency. So the use of it should be kept to its lowest.

2) Rational and Emotional Motivation

i) Rational Motivation

Traditionally the term rationality is associated with persons who carefully evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of all the alternatives before selecting the one that gives them the greatest utility. In the marketing context, we can say that consumers who are ‘rational’ will select the goals after learning many objective criteria such as weight, size, price, etc.

ii) Emotional Motivation

As against this emotional motive are those goals, which are selected based on emotion’s involvement. Usually, such goals are selected purely on personal or subjective criteria such as a desire for recognition of status, fear, pride, esteem, love, etc.

3) Primary Motivation and Secondary Motivation 

i) Primary Motivation

Primary motive also known as biological motive has a definite physiological basis and is biologically necessary for the survival of the individual or species. These arouse the behaviour of the organism in directions that lead to the required change in the internal environment.

The sources of biological motivational needs include increased/decreased stimulation (arousal), activating senses (taste, touch, smell, etc.), and decreased hunger, thirst, and discomfort.

ii) Secondary Motivation

Secondary motivation is a learned stimulus and is sometimes known as the psychobiological rationale. They are not physiologically based. These are the reasons for the development of a personality. Secondary motives originate during our lifetime. They are gained and learned through our interaction with people. They are classified into two types which are social motives and psychological motives.

Social motives are those which motivate us to go out, interact with people and do things that give a feeling of pleasure and satisfaction psychological motives are individualistic as they are related to self-security, self-freedom, self-exhibition, self-esteem, self concept and self-assertion.

4) Intrinsic Motivation and Extrinsic Motivation 

i) Intrinsic Motivation

It refers to a motive that comes from inside of an individual rather than from any external or outside rewards, such as money or grades. People may work at a job because it gives them feelings of competence and a sense of personal control, the job is a subject of pride, doing the job is fun, the tasks are challenging, and so on. In this situation, the person is intrinsically motivated to do work.

Therefore, intrinsically motivated behaviours are ones for which there is no clear reward except the activity itself. People may be motivated by intrinsic needs, for example, the need for the satisfaction that accompanies performing meaningful, interesting, enjoyable or challenging work, a desire to belong to a social group, a sense of responsibility, self-esteem, success, creativity and making a difference in some way.

ii) Extrinsic Motivation

Extrinsic motivation refers to behaviour that is driven by external rewards and comes from the outside world. The tangible motivating factors are rewards such as grades or money and intangible rewards are praise or fame. These rewards provide happiness, fulfilment and job satisfaction that the job itself may not provide. Extrinsic stimulus drives the performance of an activity to gain a particular externally offered or required result. The stimulus that leaders or managers create in people through their actions is extrinsic. People are motivated to do something or not to do it as a result of a leader’s or manager’s behaviour.

Motivation is not just a result of good leadership. People may be motivated to achieve the required results through bullying or instilling fear in others, as a means to avoid unpleasant consequences. This is negative reinforcement. People may be motivated by the hope of extrinsic rewards, such as money recognition and other externally provided rewards and benefits. Extrinsic motivation entails a feeling of compulsion to do things for an external source to achieve a result that satisfies usually lower-order needs like money for survival.

Extrinsic motivation entails securing and seeking a reward to work. It occurs when an activity is rewarded by incentives that are not inherent in the task, i.e., extrinsic stimulation is external to the individual; rewards such as money are presented for engaging in tasks.

5) Financial and Non Financial Motivation

The term ‘incentive’ means a temptation, which excites or motivates one to act in the desired direction. An incentive has a motivational power, it influences the decisions of people about putting efforts toward task completion. In modern organisations, various incentives are used to motivate people.

These incentives are of two types, as given below:

i) Financial Motivation

These are monetary as they involve the flow of money from the organisation to staff. Examples of pecuniary benefits are wages, salaries, allowances, bonuses, fringe benefits, etc.

ii) Non Financial Motivation

Non financial incentives do not involve many financial commitments on the part of the organisation. They do not add to the monetary benefits of those who receive them. They take the form of job enrichment, participative management, praise, an opportunity for growth, etc.


1. How to improve motivation in organisational behaviour?

The management can use various techniques to improve an individual’s organizational potential. However, one central technique used by businesses is intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. It is used to boost the individual morale to do his best at the workplace.

2. What is motivation in organisational behaviour?

Motivation in organisational behaviour determines human behaviour within an organisation; It creates a desire for work in the employees and encourages them to utilise their abilities to the fullest. Motivation in an organisation refers to a positive state of mind that encourages employees to achieve organisational objectives successfully.

3. What is the concept of motivation?

Motivation is a factor that drives or pushes one in a specific direction or to behave in a certain way. Motivation can be called a driving force, or it can also be stated as a process that starts and drives various physical or psychological activities.

4. What is motivation in life?

Motivation can be defined as drive, force, desires, needs and wishes that may lead individuals to behave in a specific manner and achieve their goals or needs.  

5. What is the concept of motivation?

Motivation can be described in terms of drive, force, desires, needs and wishes that may lead to individuals behaving in a particular manner. Motivation is essential for breaking old habits and developing healthy ones. A willingness to get praise from the teacher may motivate a student to perform well in a class activity. A wish to gain more knowledge about a subject may encourage an individual to take up an educational programme. A hunger drive may enable an individual to buy biscuits or snacks. A desire to spend time with their parents may encourage a person to travel long distances. Thus, any human behaviour can result from some motivation.

6. What is the meaning of motivation?

Motivation refers to the willingness of individual members to set and accept challenging goals, engage in their work, take responsibility, and experience job satisfaction. It is a process that begins with a psychological or physiological need or deficiency, triggering behaviour or a drive directed toward a goal or stimulus.

7. What is the Nature of Motivation in organisational behaviour?

The nature of motivation in organisational behaviour is an Internal & psychological process. It is a process-driven, dynamic, goal-oriented and indirectly observed activity which is shaped by social and cultural factors.

You May Also Like:-

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top