Input-based performance evaluation, incentive intensity, and proactive work behavior

Lan GUO, On Wing, Bernard WONG, Man Ching, Gladie LUI

Research output: Book Chapters | Papers in Conference ProceedingsBook ChapterResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose - We examine how input- (vs. output-) based performance evaluation and incentive intensity impact employees’ autonomous motivation, thereby influence their proactive work behaviors. Methodology - We collected survey responses from 309 employees of different firms. Multi-group Structural Equation Modeling analyses were used to analyze the data. Findings - Input-based evaluation had a positive effect on autonomous motivation and proactive work behaviors when task uncertainty was high, but a negative effect when it was low. Autonomous motivation had a positive effect on proactive work behaviors. Research implications - Our results on the moderating effect of task uncertainty provide insights into inconsistencies in earlier studies. Moreover, applying self-determination theory of motivation to incentive research can provide some insights into why sometimes, incentives can negatively affect performance. Practical implications - The study of proactive work behaviors is important because despite their necessity in the fast-changing business environment, they are relatively unexplored in the incentive literature. Proactivity is especially important for tasks that are high in uncertainty because the exact tasks to achieve those goals are hard to specify. Originality/value of paper - We investigate the effect of performance management system on proactive work behaviors, mediated by autonomous motivation and moderated by task uncertainty.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in management accounting
Number of pages39
ISBN (Print)9781781908426
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2013


  • Performance evaluation
  • incentive intensity
  • input-based evaluation
  • output-based evaluation
  • proactive behavior
  • self-determination theory


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