Chapter 8: Motivation

Learning Objectives

In this chapter, we will:

  • Define motivation.
  • Identify the relationship between needs, equity and conflict at work.
  • Recognize how strategies like job enrichment, job enlargement and employee empowerment can help fulfill esteem needs.
  • Review principles of communication climate.
  • Explore types of confirming and disconfirming messages.
  • Describe characteristics of supportive and defensive communication climates.
  • Explain styles of communication on the passive-assertive-aggressive continuum.
  • Compare using I and You statements.
  • List steps in the assertion process.
  • Analyze how framing and reframing can help assert needs and boundaries.
  • Review goals in conflict and the SCARF model.

In this chapter, we will examine how our needs and goals can lead to conflict. In particular, we will examine two popular theories of motivation (Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and equity theory) as they relate to conflict. We will also explore how organizational strategies like job enrichment and communication strategies can be used to create an environment that fills an employees needs for safety, belonging, and esteem. Next, we will contrast strategies for asserting our needs from passivity to aggression and explore the process of asserting our needs in a way that honours our own boundaries while also respecting the other person. Finally, we will explore two additional frameworks that can help us to understand our goals and needs in conflict situations.


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Conflict Management Copyright © 2022 by Laura Westmaas, BA, MSc is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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