Title
Age-related differences in work motivation
Author
Faculty/Department
Faculty of Applied Economics
Publication type
article
Publication
Cambridge ,
Subject
Psychology
Economics
Source (journal)
Journal of occupational and organizational psychology. - Cambridge
Volume/pages
85(2012) :2 , p. 300-329
ISSN
0963-1798
ISI
000303809600005
Carrier
E
Target language
English (eng)
Full text (Publishers DOI)
Affiliation
University of Antwerp
Abstract
This paper examines age-related differences in work motivation in two samples of 9,388 and 2,512 individuals who completed a comprehensive motivation questionnaire for selection or development purposes. In the first sample, age differences were examined by controlling for gender and investigating whether relationships between age and motivation were non-linear. Statistically significant relationships between motivation and age were found for most motivation scales, explaining up to 12% of the variance in specific scales. The second sample was used to confirm these results and to determine whether differences on these motivation scales could be explained by additional demographic variables, which were not available in the first sample. When controlling for demographic variables, such as gender, managerial experience, and university education, the pattern of results was similar in the second data set although effects were smaller. Results generally support propositions from the literature, which suggest a shift in people's motives rather than a general decline in motivation with age: older employees were less motivated by extrinsically but more by intrinsically rewarding job features.
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