Work Motivation Profiles and Work Performance in a Group of Corporate Employees: A Two-Step Cluster Analysis

Keywords: work motivation profiles, self-determination theory, two-step cluster analysis, corporate employees, subjective work performance, transnational organizations


Few studies have applied a person-centered approach to work motivation using cluster or profile analyses. Thus, little is known about which configurations of work motivations characterize professionals. The aim of this study is to establish the structure of work motivation profiles under the framework of self-determination theory and to examine the relationship between work motivation and subjective work performance. The study involved 147 corporate employees who completed the Multidimensional Work Motivation Scale and self-rated their work performance. The two-step cluster analysis was applied, followed by a one-way ANOVA and a post-hoc Bonferroni test. The findings revealed differences between the five profiles for all forms of motivational regulation on the self-determination continuum (large effect sizes). Further examination revealed that the employees’ current work performances differed across motivational profiles (medium effect size). Strongly and poorly motivated as well as autonomously motivated employees reported better subjective work performance compared to unmotivated individuals. In line with self-determination theory, the quantity and shape of motivation can be simultaneously considered in terms of both theoretical and practical implementation.


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