This study examines the link between Neuroticism and work motivation under work conditions that provide clear behavioral expectations. Within a two-phase correlational laboratory setup, participants (N = 158) worked on a simple task with specific, high goals that were linked to monetary rewards. Structural equation modeling analysis largely supported the postulated model. Focusing on antecedents and consequences of goal commitment, we found that Neuroticism was indirectly related to the attainment of assigned goals via motivational variables in the process of goal pursuit. Independent of cognitive ability, positive and negative effects of Neuroticism were evident in the motivational process, which forms an explanation for the close-to-zero relationships to performance outcomes. Two facets (Anxiety, Selfconsciousness) seem to offer explanations for the contradicting effects of Neuroticism in the process of goal pursuit.