Can I Do It? Will I Try? Personal Efficacy, Assigned Goals, and Performance Norms as Motivators of Individual Performance1


  • 1

    The authors would like to thank Dov Eden and Susan Straus for their helpful comments on this manuscript

2 Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Deborah E. Gibbons, Robinson College of Business, Georgia State University, P. O. Box 4014, Atlanta, GA 30302-4014. e-mail:


This study tested concurrent influences of personal efficacy, assigned goals, and performance norms on individual performance, mediated by personal goals and task-specific self-efficacy. Seventy-seven undergraduate students performed a verbal task in this laboratory experiment that manipulated assigned goal level (low, high) and information about the performance of others (low, high). Relations among variables, including general, domain, and task-specific self-efficacy, as well as performance were examined through structural equation modeling. Results demonstrated simultaneous effects of assigned goals and normative information on self-efficacy, personal goals, and subsequent performance, as well as mediated effects of domain efficacy on performance.