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Atin Dasgupta
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London-trained Dr. Sunita Banerji is a founding director of Eternessse Clinic. A warm, affectionate and caring human being, she is known in the entire Lokhandwala neighbourhood as a leading skin and hair specialist and a cosmetologist with a deep and genuine concern for the problems of her patients.
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  • Perfman HR: A Short History Of Motivation Tests 0 comments
    Sep 22, 2011 4:22 AM | about stocks: MPA


    There are a number of tests of motivation. For example, the Motivational Styles Questionnaire (MSQ) (Tarleton, 1997) looks at what an individual wants out of a work situation and how he or she will seek to deal with everyday tasks. The latter include the balance between an operational task focus and seeing the task in terms of personal success. In fact, many test publishers include motivational tests in their listings, and the BPS guide to personality tests (BPS, 2001) has a section on this  too. There are, however, a number of potential problems with motivation and, like many other things, it is something about which experts disagree. This is rather vividly illustrated in Reber’s (1995) Dictionary of Psychology where it is described as an ‘extremely important but definitionally elusive term’. This is followed by one of the longest entries in the dictionary, but including a useful reference to it as a general or a specific energizer.
     
    There is debate over the importance of transitory motivators, sometimes indistinguishable from states or moods and those that are enduring or characteristic in the sense of that which can readily be aroused, ie that  which can readily provide a specific energizer. For example, a golf enthusiast may find a cocktail party boring, with little beyond polite conventions to keep him involved in small talk. In other words, his motivation for the event is low and he may be thinking of leaving. Finding  fellow  enthusiast for the game with the little white ball, however, he happily and energetically engages in discussion, possibly outstaying his welcome at the social occasion.
     
    The idea of the enduring nature here is what has led some (eg Cooper, 2002) to question whether what is really being assessed is, after all, personality. The distinction between motivation and personality seems to become even less if one thinks of those motivations that seem ever present in some people, eg curiosity or need for achievement. The fact that some personality measures have scales labelled in terms like these (eg ‘variety’ and ‘achievement’ in the OPQ) is in line with this. Some writers (eg Clifton and Nelson, 1992) have suggested that many personal characteristics – ‘themes’ in their terminology – are motivational in the sense that exercising them produces positive feelings and denial of the scope to do so produces the opposite.
     
    My own practice has been to take these distinctions on board in assessment, but often to present findings on motivation – drawn from whatever source – somewhat separately. For example, in connection with potential succession in management buyouts and other major changes backed by private equity houses, I have found it helpful to comment on the potential successors’ motivations for the top job when the lead person exits with his or her money in two years’ time.
     
    Sonal Aurora is director and co-founder of Top Recruitment Company India. Perfman HR is a premier HR Consulting & Recruitment Company Founded in Mumbai, India. We are an inventive and dynamic Human Resource Company specializing in Executive Search, Performance Management, Assessments, Recruitments, Training, Learning & HR Solutions.


    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

    Additional disclosure: Perfman HR is a premier HR Consulting & Recruitment Company Founded in Mumbai, India. We are an inventive and dynamic Human Resource Company specializing in Executive Search, Performance Management, Assessments, Recruitments, Training, Learning & HR Solutions.
    Stocks: MPA
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