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Rensis Likert and High Producing Managers – Process Models of Motivation

Rensis Likert studied different systems of management and the things that ‘high-producing managers’ do to achieve the results they get. His conclusions build a helpful model of motivation and how to get the best from the people who work for you.

Watching this video is worth 3 Management Courses CPD Points*.
(See below for more details)

This video is part of course module number 3.7.2
Program 3: Managing and Leading Individuals
Course 7: Motivation
Section 2: Process Models of Motivation

Primary videos that precede this video include:
Introduction to Motivation https://youtu.be/hbPGqPLv2s4
The Fundamentals of Motivation https://youtu.be/IVjnAZ-8-dY

Primary videos about Process Models of Motivation include:
– Elton Mayo and the Hawthorne Experiment https://youtu.be/jRMO43s5NGY
– Victor Vroom and Expectancy Theory https://youtu.be/WDgF7Avijlc
– John Stacy Adams and Equity Theory https://youtu.be/ksnCw96vg7M
– Douglas McGregor and Theory X & Theory Y https://youtu.be/fS5iqEf1Azs
– Chris Argyris and the Immaturity-Maturity Model of Motivation https://youtu.be/L_QqwdwE_LI

In the 1950s/60s, Rensis Likert did his research on Management Styles. Likert set out 4 Systems or styles of Management:

System 1: Exploitative-Authoritative
Authoritarian. Power flows down, poor communication, high task focus & little/no attention to relationships, use of threats & punishments, productivity is ok.

System 2: Benevolent-Authoritative
Enlightened authoritarianism, low focus on relationships & some communication upwards, use of rewards and threats, some delegation, productivity is fair, but high rates of absenteeism & staff turnover.

System 3: Consultative
Up & down communication, sharing of power, goals are discussed rather than imposed, good productivity with moderate levels of turnover.

System 4: Participative Group
Power flows up, high focus on relationships as well as task, excellent communication up, down & laterally, participative decisions, commitment to goals & high levels of productivity with low turnover.

High Producing Managers
– Foster highly collaborative groups of employees via attention to motivational needs
– Use classical management tools, but in a participative way. Put them in the hands of the group
– Recognize & act on the importance of supportive relationships. People get a sense of respect & value from being a part of a group
– Foster group decision-making, rather than imposed managerial decisions

Linking Pin Structures
Likert’s approach to organizational structures was informed by his idea of High Producing Managers: Linking Pin Structures. Managers at the top of a group themselves form a group with their own manager who, in turn, forms a group with their own manager and peers. Linking Pin Structures lock teams together and create supportive environments at all levels.

1. Consider which of Likert’s 4 systems of management best matches your own approach. (1 MC CPD Point)
2. If you do not have a Participative Group style, reflect on what changes you could make to your team to improve performance. What more can you do to become a high-producing manager? (2 MC CPD Points)
4. Take steps to make those changes and reflect on what you learn along the way pf your transformation. (4 MC CPD Points)
5. How helpful would the idea of Linking Pin Structures be for you and your peers? What steps can u take to implement the idea at your workplace? (2 MC CPD Points)

Free Resources
– CPD Tools – https://gum.co/MC-CPD
Paid resources
– Management Courses Onboarding Kit – https://gum.co/MC-ObK ($3)

For a solid introduction to motivation:
– HBR Guide to Motivating People https://geni.us/sO2IKgn

The best of modern thinking on motivation, in accessible business books. These are all modern classics:
– Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us https://geni.us/uq3EBO
– Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone To Take Action https://geni.us/vjErAN
– Lead, Motivate, Engage: How to INSPIRE Your Team to Win at Work https://geni.us/ABkZEx
– Multipliers, Revised and Updated: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smart https://geni.us/E39I
– Payoff: The Hidden Logic That Shapes Our Motivations https://geni.us/uMaP
– The Progress Principle: Using Small Wins to Ignite Joy, Engagement, and Creativity at Work https://geni.us/tiEkeH

Management Courses Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Points
You can record your Management Courses CPD points on our free, downloadable CPD record log.
Download it at: https://gum.co/MC-CPD

Each video has two levels of MC CPD points. For this video:
– If you simply watched the video, record 3 MC CPD points
– If you also carried out all of the recommended exercises, score a total of 12 MC CPD points

Links to our book recommendations are affiliated through Amazon


What Motivates People? The Top Motivation Models [Compilation]
Porter & Lawler: Expectancy Theory on Steroids
Edward Lawler: Vroom Enhanced with Two Types of Expectancy
William Ouchi: Theory Z Organizations and Motivation
The Psychology of Motivation: Understand the Basics
Basics of Motivation: Building Morale in your Team
Basics of Motivation: Incentives – do they work?
Hackman and Oldham: Job Characteristics Model of Motivation
Work Orientation Theory: John Goldthorpe and How Attitudes affect Motivation
Edwin Locke: Goal-Setting Theory of Motivation
Daniel Pink and Motivation 3.0 – Content Models of Motivation
Ryan & Deci: Self Determination Theory (SDT) – Content Models of Motivation
Chris Argyris and the Immaturity-Maturity Model of Motivation: Treat People as Adults
David McClelland and Three Motivational Needs – Content Theories of Motivation
Clayton Alderfer and ERG Theory – Content Models of Motivation
Frederick Herzberg and the Two-factor Theory – Content Models of Motivation
Abraham Maslow and the Hierarchy of Needs – Content Model of Motivation
Douglas McGregor and Theory X & Theory Y: Process of Model of Motivation
John Stacy Adams and Equity Theory: Process of Model of Motivation
Victor Vroom and Expectancy Theory: Process of Model of Motivation
Elton Mayo and the Hawthorne Experiment: Process of Model of Motivation
The Fundamentals of Motivation – Motives, Drives, and being Blocked
Introduction to Motivation: Key Questions Answered

Mike Clayton

About Mike Clayton 

Dr Mike Clayton is a (former) Project Manager and now a management educator. Having trained thousands of people at live workshops, seminars, and conferences, he now delivers training mainly via video. He has 14 books with international publishers and runs two successful YouTube channels. He is also the founder of OnlinePMCourses.com

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