Reinforcement theory states that a worker’s behavior is based on the consequences for their behavior, with behaviors reinforced by positive consequences happening more often and behaviors reinforced by negative consequences happen less often. Reinforcement can be positive, negative, punitive, or lead to behavior extinction. Reinforcement tends to follow a schedule of reinforcement that relates the behaviors managers want to reinforce to when consequences for those behaviors will be delivered.
An important element of workplace management is when managers motivate workers to do their job well. This course discusses how reinforcement theory can be used to motivate employees.