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MARS model of individual behaviour or MARS BAR model of individual behavior or simply MARS model is a model that seeks to explain individual behaviour as a result of internal and external factors [1] or influences acting together. The name of the model is an acronym for individual Motivation, Abilities, Role Perception and Situational Factors. These are seen as the four major factors in determining individual behaviour and results. Behaviour and Results is sometimes shortened to BAR and so the model becomes MARS BAR. However, individual values, personality, perceptions, emotions, attitudes, and stress form a basis on which the factors interact. The model can be applied to a variety of situations, but is usually used in Management, Industrial Psychology or Organizational Behaviour studies. The MARS model shows combined effect on individual performance in organisations. If any factor weakens, employee performance will be affected. For example, enthusiastic and extrovert sales personnel with high level of motivation who understands their job duties (roles perception) well, with adequate and sufficient resources (situational factors) will not be able to perform their job well if they lack of product knowledge and sales selling techniques (ability).

MARS MODEL OF INDIVIDUAL BEHAVIOR AND PERFORMANCE Individual behaviour influenced by motivation, ability, role perceptions, and situational factors (M.A.R.S.) Need to understand all four factors to diagnose and change individual behaviour

*Note: One colleague (Chris Perryer) coined the term MARS BAR to help students remember that motivation, ability, role perceptions, and situational factors (MARS) are drivers of individual Behaviour and Results (BAR).]

1. Motivation Internal forces that affect the direction, intensity, and persistence of a persons voluntary choice of behaviour - direction -- directed by goals - intensity -- amount of effort allocated - persistence -- amount of time that effort is exerted 2. Ability Natural aptitudes and learned capabilities required to successfully complete a task

Aptitudes -- natural talents that help people learn more quickly and perform better Learned capabilities -- acquired skills and knowledge Competencies -- abilities, individual values, personality traits and other characteristics of people that lead to superior performance Person-job matching -- three ways to match people with jobs - select qualified people - develop employee abilities through training - redesign job to fit person's existing abilities

3. Role perceptions Beliefs about what behavior is required to achieve the desired results - understanding what tasks to perform - understanding relative importance of tasks - understanding preferred behaviors to accomplish tasks Clarifying role perceptions - Provide information about tasks and priorities - Provide frequent and meaningful performance feedback. - Provide training on preferred work processes 4. Situational factors Environmental conditions (e.g. time, people, budget, and work facilities) that constrain or facilitate behavior - Beyond the individuals control in the short run

FIVE TYPES OF WORK-RELATED BEHAVIOR 1. Joining the organization Need qualified people to perform tasks war for Talent -- organizations acquire knowledge by hiring the best employees

Successful firms attract talent by applying many OB topics 2. Remaining with the organization Hold onto valuable knowledge by keeping knowledgeable employees Job dissatisfaction leads to motivation to quit 3. Maintaining work attendance Caused by: - situational factors -- weather, traffic - motivation -- job dissatisfaction, sick leave 4. Performing required tasks Task performance -- goal-directed activities under persons control Jobs have several performance dimensions, each requiring specific skills and knowledge 5. Exhibiting organizational citizenship Performance beyond the required job duties -- e.g., Avoiding unnecessary conflicts, helping others, tolerating impositions, being involved, performing beyond normal role requirements Improving org citizenship through: -- Rewarding extra-role behavior and performance -- perceived fairness minimizing perceptions of injustice in org. decisions - hire employees with a social responsibility norm LEARNING IN ORGANIZATIONS Learning -- relatively permanent change in behavior (or behavior tendency) that occurs as a result of a persons interaction with the environment Behavior change is evidence of learning Due to interaction with environment -- study, practice, experience (not instinct) Influences ability, role perceptions and motivation Relatively permanent change -- not due to situation Learning affects behavior/performance through: Ability -- developing competencies Role perceptions -- clarifying duties, priorities

Motivation -- linking behavior to rewards, feedback, feelings of accomplishment Learning also important for knowledge management Learning explicit and tacit knowledge Explicit Knowledge -- can be organized and communicated from one person to another Tacit Knowledge -- subtle info acquired through observation and experience -- cant be explicitly communicated -- only through observation and experience Challenge of knowledge management is to make more tacit knowledge explicit BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION: LEARNING THROUGH REINFORCEMENT We learn how to operate on the environment -- alter our behavior to maximize positive consequences and minimize adverse consequences. Operant behaviors -- make the environment respond in ways that we want Respondent behaviors -- uncontrollable responses to the environment -- taking hand away from hot stove A-B-Cs OF BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION Central objective of behavior modification is to change behavior (B) by managing its antecedents (A) and consequences (C). 1. Antecedents Events preceding the behavior Provide cues that certain behaviors will have particular consequences -- e.g. supervisor instructions, alarm signals 2. Behavior What people say or do ---e.g. improving attendance 3. Consequences Events following behavior that influence its future occurrence Law of effect -- likelihood that an operant behavior will be repeated depends on its consequences Includes contingencies and schedules of reinforcement CONTINGENCIES OF REINFORCEMENT 1. Positive reinforcement Introducing a desirable consequence -- increases or maintains future behavior

- e.g. receiving a bonus after successfully completing an important project

2. Negative reinforcement Removing or avoiding a consequence increases or maintains future behavior (avoidance learning) -- e.g. manager stops criticizing employee when performance improves 3. Punishment A consequence decreases chance of future behavior a. introducing an unpleasant consequence - e.g. threat b. removing a pleasant consequence - e.g. losing bonus Punishment differs from negative reinforcement 4. Extinction No consequence follows the target behavior - e.g. employee receives no praise for good performance Comparing reinforcement contingencies Fewest adverse consequences when positive reinforcement follows desired behaviors; extinction follows undesirable behaviors Risks involved with using punishment and negative reinforcement, but may be necessary to maintain equity and justice in the workplace SCHEDULES OF REINFORCEMENT Reinforcement schedule may have a greater effect than the size of the reinforcer on learning and behavior management 1. Continuous reinforcement Reinforce every occurrence of the desired behavior - more rapid learning than intermittent schedules - faster extinction when reinforcer removed 2. Fixed interval Behavior is reinforced after a fixed time - e.g. employees paid every two weeks 3. Variable interval

Reinforcer administered after a varying length of time - e.g. receiving promotions after an average of 18 months of good performance

4. Fixed ratio Reinforce behavior after it has occurred a fixed number of times - e.g. piece rate -- paid after produce a fixed number of units completed 5. Variable ratio Reinforce desired behavior after it occurs a varying number of times - e.g. making one successful sales call after an average of five calls BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION IN PRACTICE Everyone practices behavior modification Electric Boat uses behavior modification principles to minimize sick time among salaried employees at the Groton, Rhode Island, shipyard Dana Corp. -- safety bingo reinforces safe work behaviors Behavior Modification at Nova Chemicals Introduced a million dollar Recruitment and Retention Program to reinforce good attendance and continued employment at its Canadian construction site -- cut absenteeism rates by 25 percent BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION LIMITATIONS Cant reinforce nonobservable behavior Reward inflation -- reinforcer tends to wear off Ethical concerns -- Variable ratio schedule viewed as a form of gambling -- Perceived manipulation -- sounds as if employees have no control LEARNING THROUGH FEEDBACK Information received about the consequences of our behavior - can be an antecedent or a consequence Improves role perceptions, ability and motivation Corrective Feedback -- identifies performance errors and helps to correct them Positive feedback motivates future behavior

Social feedback sources Supervisors, clients, co-workers etc. multi-source (360-degree) feedback - received from a full circle of people around the employee - provides more complete and accurate information than from a supervisor alone -- lower level employees feel a greater sense of fairness and open communication 360-degree feedback challenges -- expensive and time consuming -- potentially ambiguous and conflicting feedback -- may be inflated feedback from peers -- emotional consequences of giving and receiving critical feedback involving people who work with you Non-social feedback sources - the job itself or results - corrective feedback better through non-social sources - considered more accurate, protects self-esteem - positive feedback better through social sources Giving feedback effectively Specific -- redirects effort/behavior more precisely Frequent -- optimal frequency depends on job cycle -- continuously available from non-social sources Timely -- available as soon as possible -- clearer association between behavior and consequences Credible -- more accepted from trustworthy sources Relevant

-- relate to individuals behavior and goals Seeking feedback Monitoring - looking for information cues - more efficient; avoids face saving problems Direct inquiry - asking others for feedback - problems: awkward and often inaccurate with negative feedback from social sources Ethics of employee monitoring Many employers monitor employee performance

- critics says it is an invasion of privacy and symbolizes a lack of trust - advocates say it protects company assets, provides a safer work environment, gives employees more accurate feedback about their performance others argue it gives employees more accurate feedback

SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY Learning by observing others, then modeling the behaviors that lead to favorable outcomes and avoiding behaviors that lead to punishing consequences 1) Behavioral modeling a. observe models behavior b. remember important actions c. try to reproduce actions through practice

Model should be respected and reinforced Good for learning tacit knowledge and skills Enhances self-efficacy -- - belief that you have the ability, motivation, and resources to complete a task successfully -- behavioral modeling makes environment predictable, thereby increasing self-efficacy 2) Learning behavior consequences We learn to anticipate the consequences of future actions through logic and by observing the experiences of others

3) Self-reinforcement Employee controls a reinforcer (e.g. having a break), but doesnt take the reinforcer until a selfset goal is done Increasingly important as employees manage themselves LEARNING THROUGH EXPERIENCE Kolbs Experiential learning model Concrete experience -- sensory and emotional engagement in some activity Reflective observation -- listening, watching, recording, and elaborating on the experience Abstract conceptualization -- developing concepts and integrating observations into logically sound theories Active experimentation testing previous experience, reflection, and conceptualization in a particular context

Experiential Learning at Michigans CREST Combined Regional Emergency Services Training (CREST) center in Michigan transfers tacit knowledge to police, fire, and emergency medical personnel through experiential learning at a mock city designed to provide real-life instruction Developing a learning orientation critical for experiential learning Value the generation of new knowledge Reward experimentation Recognize mistakes as part of learning process Encourage employees to take reasonable risks Action learning Experiential learning -- employees involved in a real, complex, and stressful problem, usually in teams, with immediate relevance to the company concrete experience with a real organizational problem learning meetings -- participants reflect on their observations regarding the problem or opportunity Team conceptualizes and applies a solution to a problem


MARS Model of Individual Behavior and Performance

September 9, 2012relivingmbadaysLeave a commentGo to comments

MARS Model seeks to explain individual behavior as a result of internal and external factors or influences acting together. The acronym MARS stands for motivation, ability, role perceptions and situational factors. All the above four factors are critical and influence the individual behavior and performance, if any one of them is low in a given situation the employee will perform poorly. These are seen as the four major factors in determining individual behavior and results.

Motivation Motivation represents the forces within a person that affects his or her direction, intensity and persistence of voluntary behavior. Direction refers to the path along which people engage their effort. People have choices about where they put their effort; they have a sense of what they are trying to achieve and at what level of quality, quantity, and so forth. In other words, motivation is goal-directed, not random. People are motivated to arrive at work on time, finish a project a few hours early, or aim for many other targets. The second element of motivation, called intensity, is the amount of effort allocated to the goal. Intensity is all about how much people push themselves to complete a task. For example, two employees might be motivated to finish their project a few hours early (direction), but only one of them puts forth enough effort (intensity) to achieve this goal. Finally, motivation involves varying levels of persistence that is, continuing the effort for a certain amount of time. Employees sustain their effort until they reach their goal or give up beforehand. Remember that motivation exists within individuals; it is not their actual behavior. Thus, direction, intensity, and persistence are cognitive (thoughts) and emotional conditions that directly cause us to move. Ability Employee abilities also make a difference in behavior and task performance. Ability includes both the natural aptitudes and the learned capabilities required to successfully complete a task.Aptitudes are the natural talents that help employees learn specific tasks more quickly and perform them better. There are many physical and mental aptitudes, and our ability to acquire skills is affected by these aptitudes. For example, finger dexterity is an aptitude by which individuals learn more quickly and potentially achieve higher performance at picking up and handling small objects with their fingers. Employees with high finger dexterity are not necessarily better than others at first; rather, their learning tends to be faster and performance potential tends to be higher. Learned capabilities are the skills and knowledge that you currently possess.

These capabilities include the physical and mental skills and knowledge you have acquired. Learned capabilities tend to wane over time when not in use. Aptitudes and learned capabilities are closely related to competencies, which has become a frequently used term in business. Competencies are characteristics of a person that result in superior performance. Many experts describe these characteristics as personal traits (i.e., knowledge, skills, aptitudes, personality, self-concept, values). Others suggest that competencies represent actions produced by a persons traits, such as serving customers, coping with heavy workloads, and providing creative ideas. With either definition, the challenge is to match a persons competencies with the jobs task requirements. A good person-job match not only produces higher performance; it also tends to increase the employees well-being. Role Perceptions Motivation and ability are important influences on individual behavior and performance, but employees also require accurate role perceptions to perform their jobs well. Role perceptions are the extent to which people understand the job duties (roles) assigned to them or expected of them. These perceptions are critical because they guide the employees direction of effort and improve coordination with co-workers, suppliers, and other stakeholders. Unfortunately, many employees do not have clear role perceptions. According to one large-scale survey, most employees understand their organizations business goals, but only 39 percent know what to do in their own jobs to achieve those goals. The role perceptions concept has three components. First, employees have accurate role perceptions when they understand the specific tasks assigned to them, that is, when they know the specific duties or consequences for which they are accountable. This may seem obvious, but employees have been (unjustly) fired for failing to perform tasks that they didnt even know were part of their job duties. Second, people have accurate role perceptions when they understand the priority of their various tasks and performance expectations. This includes the quantity versus quality dilemma, such as how many customers to serve in an hour (quantity) versus how well the employee should serve each customer (quality). It also refers to properly allocating time and resources to various tasks, such as how much time a manager should spend coaching employees in a typical week. The third component of role perceptions is understanding the preferred behaviors or procedures for accomplishing the assigned tasks. This refers to situations in which more than one method could be followed to perform the work. Employees with clear role perceptions know which of these methods is preferred by the organization. Situational Factors Employees behavior and performance also depend on how much the situation supports or interferes with their task goals. Situational factors include conditions beyond the employees immediate control that constrain or facilitate behavior and performance. Some situational characteristicssuch as consumer preferences and economic conditionsoriginate from the external environment and, consequently, are beyond the employees and organizations control. However, other situational factors such as time, people, budget, and physical work facilitiesare controlled by people within the organization. Therefore, corporate leaders need to carefully arrange these conditions so that employees can achieve their performance potential. The four elements of the MARS modelmotivation, ability, role perceptions, and situational factorsaffect all voluntary workplace behaviors and their performance outcomes. These elements are themselves influenced by other individual differences. References: McShaneVon Glinow, Organizational Behavior.