Recurring Goals: The Effect of Divisibility and Goal Attainment on Self-Efficacy and Effort

45 Pages Posted: 26 Jun 2007

See all articles by Xavier Dreze

Xavier Dreze

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School

Joseph Nunes

University of Southern California - Marshall School of Business

Date Written: June 2007

Abstract

People often take on tasks again and again that lead to identical outcomesâ€"what we refer to as recurring goals (e.g., getting up in time to catch the early train and arrive at work on time). This research documents how effort increases in response to goal attainment in a recurring goal framework. Most loyalty programs are structured as a series of recurring goals (awards). The effectiveness of a loyalty program depends directly on the number of rewards offered and the amount of an alternative currency required to redeem each reward, what we have labeled a program's divisibility. We show how goal attainment and thus the effort exerted toward future rewards depends on a program's divisibility. Our results suggest the observed increase in effort occurs due to an increase in self-efficacy, or the impact that success has on perceptions of one's particular aptitude at completing an endeavor.

Suggested Citation

Dreze, Xavier and Nunes, Joseph, Recurring Goals: The Effect of Divisibility and Goal Attainment on Self-Efficacy and Effort (June 2007). Marshall School of Business Working Paper No. MKT 07-07, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=995248 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.995248

Xavier Dreze (Contact Author)

University of Pennsylvania - The Wharton School ( email )

3641 Locust Walk
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6365
United States

Joseph Nunes

University of Southern California - Marshall School of Business ( email )

701 Exposition Blvd
Los Angeles, CA California 90089
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
216
Abstract Views
1,292
rank
197,418
PlumX Metrics