The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students-The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students-Mark Vink_Entrepreneurship Startup Studio and Business Teacher_idcard
WRITTEN BY
Mark Vink
10 November, 2022

The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students

The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students-The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students-Mark_Northbridge
The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students

This semester, Northbridge International School Cambodia grade 12 DP Business Management students have been exploring the role of motivation in the workplace.

Students were tasked with examining a range of theories on how best to motivate a workforce so as to achieve organisational objectives. The starting point was for the students to reflect on what they consider to be important motivational factors when they, in the not-too-distant future, enter the workforce, ranking these factors on a spectrum:

 

The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students-The role of motivation in DP Business Management - and the lives of Northbridge students

 

Perhaps unsurprisingly, most students regarded financial rewards as highly significant, but it was widely acknowledged that there are many other important motivating factors in the workplace and indeed in their current lives as they near their final exams. These factors can be categorised as either intrinsic (motivation to work because it’s interesting, fun or challenging) or extrinsic (motivation to work in anticipation of reward or avoidance of punishment).

What aspects of motivation theory can we as teachers and parents draw upon in order to help motivate our students to enthusiastically engage with their studies? Here are some examples to consider:

  • In Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, it is argued that we all have ‘self-actualisation’ needs i.e. the desire to grow as a person and realise one’s potential. By encouraging a growth mindset – the belief that skills and talents can be developed through hard work and taking risks – we motivate our students. When students experience failure, they should not be resigned to ‘having tried their best’, but rather focus on the lessons that can be learnt and what the next steps should be.
  • Herzberg’s Two-Factor theory states that we are motivated by psychological growth factors including responsibility and recognition. Techniques adopted at NISC to encourage students to take more responsibility for their own learning include self- and peer-assessment. This approach empowers students and motivates them to engage more deeply with the course content and assessment criteria. Recognition of achievement comes not only from teachers, but notably also from the students’ peers.
  • Useful insights are offered by Adams’ Equity theory relating to the importance of fairness. Adams proposes that when people feel fairly treated it heightens their level of motivation. In an equitable classroom this means ensuring that all students have the resources and support they need and their work is assessed in a standardised manner.  In DP Business Management, students recently finalised their Internal Assessment research projects. To ensure fairness, their work was internally moderated by NISC business teachers, applying consistency of marking and maintenance of standards.
  • Pink’s Drive theory asserts that the focus should be firmly on intrinsic motivation, namely the internal drivers of autonomy, mastery and purpose. The DP Extended Essay, recently completed by our grade 12s, is a great example of cultivating all three components. Autonomy is promoted through independent academic research and writing, while giving students opportunities to develop mastery in a topic of interest to them, which in turn provides a real sense of purpose.

Source: Hoang, P (2018). Business Management 4th Ed. IBID