The Road Traveled, the Road Ahead, Or Simply on the Road? When Progress Framing Affects Motivation in Goal Pursuit

Jacob H. Wiebenga, Department of Marketing, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Groningen, the Netherlands
Bob M. Fennis, Department of Marketing, Faculty of Economics and Business, University of Groningen, the Netherlands
The present research examined how the framing of one’s progress from an initial state toward an end state (i.e., framed as the distance traveled from the initial state to the present state –‘work-done’ vs. framed as the distance left from the present state to the end state –‘work-left’) and construal level interact in influencing motivation in goal pursuit. In two experiments we found that both state and chronic differences in experienced construal level modulate the impact of progress framing on motivation, such that type of framing only affected motivation of people with an abstract, but not a concrete mindset. Under these conditions, progress framed in terms of work-done produced increased motivation compared to a work-left frame. Moreover, perceived goal distance was found to mediate the impact of progress framing on motivation for individuals with an abstract, but not a concrete mindset.
[ to cite ]:
Jacob H. Wiebenga and Bob M. Fennis (2011) ,"The Road Traveled, the Road Ahead, Or Simply on the Road? When Progress Framing Affects Motivation in Goal Pursuit", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 39, eds. Rohini Ahluwalia, Tanya L. Chartrand, and Rebecca K. Ratner, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 743-745.