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Organizational success and employee satisfaction are directly linked with each other in helping organizations to improve their productivity, quality, etc. At present time regardless of the organizational settings and environment the managers face a common problem to motivate their work force. Employee engagement has become the main pillar of business success for all the global organizations in today's competitive environment. Engagement not only have the potential to influence employee retention, productivity and loyalty but it is also a key link to customer satisfaction, organisation reputation etc. Every organization want to create maximum shareholder value apart from profit maximization which it can only achieve if the organization can attain the highest levels of business performance for which the employees of the organization plays a very vital role. Employee performance plays a major role to succeed in any business. And ever since this concept was discovered several studies were conducted regarding the factors influencing employee motivation. The research on employee satisfaction is constantly evolving, with new points of view and strategies emerging on a regular basis. In fact, there are a plethora of books that have been written on the subject. This study will analyze the various components of employee satisfaction, as well as the key drivers involved in motivating the employees with relevant examples. (ACCEL,2010)
Employees are one of the key factors for any organizations success. No organization can succeed without a certain level of commitment and effort from its employees. Organizations always attempt to satisfy its employees to gain their commitment and loyalty. According to Luthans, (2001) job satisfaction might be one of the most desirable outcomes that employees would like to obtain. Over the years various researches has indicated that job satisfaction is necessary for both individual performance and organizational-level improvement. Bartolo and Furlonger( 1999) stated that there has been a convergence of interest on the efforts of the employees by the organizations to examine the factors that foster greater job satisfaction and make positive contributions towards the organization. (Beatty,1997)
While reviewing the literature, it would be difficult to find the ideal definition of employee satisfaction. However according to Ivancevich and Donnelly (1968), employee satisfaction is a favorable perspective of the worker towards his present the work role. Later Smith, Kendall, and Hulin (1969) stated that job satisfaction is a feeling or affective response towards the facets of the situation. Although there are no accords on ways of defining job satisfaction, it has been always considered as an employee's perception on how well his/her job provides the important things in their life.
Again according to the employees' degree of job satisfaction or dissatisfaction employees' behavior may vary to influence organizational operations and performances. Carrell, Jennings, and Heavrin, (1997) stated that a strong relationship between job satisfaction and organizational commitment has been found over the years .Even when the employees are satisfied; they want to leave the organization for some better opportunities at other place. To summarize it would be ideal to say job satisfaction is directly related to employee turnover in an organization.(Kressler, Herwig.,2003)(Lindner.J,1998).
Determinants of Employee Satisfaction
Today's business world is changing every day at a constant pace and these changes are creating a lot of problem for the managers in terms of human resources. At present time the commercial success of every organization rely mostly on the employees. From productivity to profitability, recruitment to retention it's only the employees which plays a vital role for the organizational upliftment.
Researchers have found that a number of variables are related directly to job satisfaction while some acts as an indicator of job dissatisfaction.
Age -Waskiewicz, (1999) stated that job satisfaction with younger employees is generally high at the beginning then drops for literally after few years then raises again later with employees age.
Gender - According to a study conducted by Hollen and Gemmell (1976) in a college, job satisfaction levels of male and female tutors varied. The males expressed higher job satisfaction levels than females.
Education - Carrel and Elbert (1974) stated negative relationship between education and job satisfaction. According to their studies employees who have more education get bored to do routine task in a job than exploring new things. (About.com,2010).
Type of work- Arnold and Feldman (1986) stated that educated employees prefer more challenging task to deliver their abilities, skills.
Type of workers -According to Ducharme and Martin (2000)'s affective coworker support helps to enhance employee job satisfaction.
Pay - Pay is an important determinant of job satisfaction Employees view pay as a mirror image of management's views towards their contribution to the organization. Derlin and Schneider (1994) stated that pay and fringe benefits plays an important role to increase employee job satisfaction.
According to Brooke (2005) leadership style of the organization and employee satisfaction are directly related to each other. The leadership of an organization generally establishes a vision; organize parameters to work for the employees within and set overall pitch for its employees of the organization. Good leaders and managers always focus on good communication process with the employees to provide greater satisfaction to the employees enabling them to tell their views and objections. To improve employee satisfaction proper organizational leadership must be incorporated at every level to achieve organizational goals. O'Connor( 2004) stated that effective leadership always ensures that employee talent is properly identified and developed for future leadership positions within the organization. Leadership that includes an understanding of employee expectations, desires and needs is necessary in order to bolster and maintain employee satisfaction. (Managing employee performance and reward 2006) (Marsden.D, Richardson,R, May 1992).
Work environment includes many aspects like employees physical work environment, management's attitude toward its employees, relationship with the colleagues and coworkers, and the working conditions.
One of the greatest factor in employee satisfaction/ is the degree of training and development the organizations provide to its employees Adequate training and development programs not only help to strengthen employee satisfaction, but also produce endless benefits for the organization. Training initiatives should be planned well by the management teams and properly funded and designed to meet organizational and employee goals. (Jariyavidyanont 1978)
Employee Development & Leadership Planning
Employee development typically includes two main areas - career development and professional development. Career development provides a broader aspect of training which directly relates to the employees professional development and career planning. Professional development skills, describe the outside scope of an employer's job description providing the skills and abilities necessary for the growth and maturation necessary for leadership positions.
The major aspect of a good employee development program is to select, cultivate, and train future leaders and managers. This move will motivate the employees to move up in the organization. Continual education and development of the employees is regarded as one of the most vital organizational strategy at present time. Cascio (1998) stated that organizations which have the best candidates helps both the organization and the employees to reach individual goals. When organizations are able to retain quality employees with sharp skills, the economic prospects for the organization improve considerably The leadership development process a simple ,supple and continuous process which links an employees personal development to both the goals individual and organizational goals. (Rue and Byars, 1999)
Employee Satisfaction and Recognition
At a time the employees were thought to be just a normal part of the production process of an organization but now every organization realized that the employees are the main driving force of the business generation process, and require high quality motivation and recognition.
A live example of an organization proactively assessing the factors which motivates its employees can be found at the Piketon Research and Extension Center in Piketon, Ohio. The organization developed a survey questionnaire consisting of ten factors and asked employees to rank them in order of importance. The most essential part of employee motivation is to make it making it stable and continuous and one of the best ways to achieve this is by a formal employee recognition program. Recognizing and appraising employees' achievements are critical to reinforcing desired behaviors. Recognition programs have proven to play an important role in a company's employee satisfaction and growth. Recognition programs serve to create positive environments that encourage desired behaviors. Organizations that implement meaningful and effective recognition programs often gain a competitive edge through increased employee retention and an increase in overall employee satisfaction the implementation of effective award and recognition programs can create a positive working environment that encourages employees to thrive. (Soranun, 1994)(Luthans, 2001).
According to Brintnall (2005) recognition makes employees feel more valued, appreciated and contributes to higher employee morale which increases overall organizational stability. An effective recognition program must be incorporated with organizational strategies and goals. As this will ensure that employee's efforts are channeled toward the ultimate goals of the organization. A well thought out and designed recognition program will take into consideration factors such as: the goals of the program, the audience, the budget, guidelines, communication, and methods of award.
The following is an appropriate example of the 12 steps of the employee recognition and satisfaction program implemented by Sony Corporation:
Awareness - In Sony employee's awareness is broaden by defining the goal of awareness to the employees and then promoting the goal through standard lines of communication within like organization like in the company like posters, contests, group meetings, department luncheons, fliers in employee paycheck envelopes.
Defining the audience - Sony corporations always define the organizational behaviors that need to be changed or improved.
Identifying a approach - Sony always tries different approaches to determine individual performance and team performance.
Building a budget.
Keep an eye on competitor's steps.
Single out the employees for awards - Sony always value its employees by providing proper remunerations to its staffs.
Implement rules within the organization. - The rules should be clearly written, and must be simple and understandable.
Communicate properly with the employees and staff.
Track the changes in performance -. Develop quantifiable methods to determine employee performance.
Announce the winners. Congratulate the top performers but be sure to show appreciation to the whole team for their efforts.
Deliver the awards.
Maintain the momentum.
Even though different organizations have different designs and plans for a recognition program, this example from the Sony Corporation includes the essential elements necessary to effectively effectuate positive employee behavior.(Shields.J,2007)
Kreitner (1995) stated that motivation is a emotional process which gives behavior a reason and direction a inclination to behave in a particular way to reach its goals.
However motivation according to the work context can be related to the degree of willingness exerted by an individual to make use of an effort towards organizational goals". Motivation is not the single factor necessary to improve the performance of the employees as people may be highly motivated but are still low performers due to variety of other factors like poor management, inadequate training or obsolete equipment etc similarly on the other hand employees can be less motivated to work but due to other factors like tight management, incentives, appraisal schemes they can perform well. Motivation is something that can lead to better performance, but only when other conditions are met. But mostly in all organizations the employers make inferences about levels of motivation of the employees purely by observing performance.
The motivated and qualified workforce plays a major role to improve the productivity of any organization. Ever since it was discovered that employee performance plays a major role to succeed in business, there have been continuous efforts by various organizations to evaluate the factors that help to optimize the intensity, quality, efficiency and reliability of performance.
According to Frederick Taylor (1856 - 1917), employees are motivated mostly by salary and wages. Taylor's Theory of Scientific Management declares that employees naturally don't like work, and in order to make them enjoy their work the managers must break down a duty into series of small tasks. Following which the employees should be given adequate training for the desired task and should be paid as per items they produce in a set time of time that is piece rate pay Taylor's methods were widely adopted by many organizations due to the benefits of increased amount of production levels and lower unit costs. For e.g. Henry Ford design the first ever production line of Ford cars by using used them. Later workers disliked Taylor's method as they were given non-challenging, recurring everyday jobs to perform and were treated little bettered than mechanical human machines.
Conversely another scholar, Elton Mayo (1880 - 1949) suggested that employees are not only concerned with their salaries but also with better motivated by the fulfillment of their social needs at job (something that Taylor disregarded). Mayo introduced the HR School of thought, which focused on manager's role to take more interest in the employees, dealing them as group having valuable opinions and realizing that employees enjoy communicating together. Mayo implemented a series of experiments at Hawthorne factory where he isolated two groups of women workers to study their productivity levels by alternating various factors like lighting and working conditions. He expected that the productivity levels will fall following the bad lighting and other conditions but he discovered that no matter what the change in lighting or working conditions occurs, the productivity levels of the employees will either improve or continue similar. After this study Mayo stated that employees are best inspired by: Better communication between managers and its staffs within the organization as Hawthorne employees were consulted during the experiments and also had been provided the opportunity to give feedback, Extra management participation with the employees as Hawthorne workers responded heavily to the increased level of attention that they received., Working in groups or teams as Prior to the experiment the Hawthorne workers never worked in teams. Here mayo's theory relates directly with the paternalistic management style.
Abraham Maslow in 1940-50 developed the theory of Hierarchy of Needs in USA which described the views of the people regarding motivation and performance. Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Model stated that people must satisfy each need in turn, starting with the first, which deals with the most obvious needs for survival itself. Still till date the Hierarchy of Needs theory remains valid for understanding human motivation, management training, and personal development.( Maslow,2009)
Maslow - Hierarchy of needs
(Source: Business balls 2010)
There are many theories on motivation but different motivation areas are often gets confused: i.e., motivation to get in a job and performance motivation. It's a great need for the managers to understand the importance on both areas as its vital for the management. Herzberg's motivational theory differentiates between the two main areas of motivation.
(Source: business balls 2010)
It differentiates the satisfiers, who are the main reason for job satisfaction from dissatisfiers, who are the main reason for job dissatisfaction . Motivating factors are mainly achievement, recognition, responsibility and the work itself. On the other hand dissatisfiers includes working conditions, salary, and relationship with colleagues, administrative supervision, etc. (Novabizz ,2009).
Lastly McGregor's X-Y theory is a simple reminder of the natural rules for managing people. He stated that there are two types of workers and managers in any organization Theory x ('authoritarian management' style) and Theory y('participative management' style). The workers following theory x dislikes work and always try to avoid it, so management must force these people for work with the threat of punishment to gain organizational objectives. Theory x workers prefers to avoid responsibility; are unambitious, and wants security above all else. On the other hand Theory y workers are self directed, motivated for work without any external control or threat of punishment, they usually accept and often seek responsibility and shows their creativity in solving organizational problems. Under Theory X, people always want to satisfy their lower needs and seek to satisfy their higher needs in leisure time.
(Vijaya. and Kiran 2002) (Quarstein, and Ardalan,1995).
In recent times the success of any business is determined by the professional capacity and the motivational level of the employees. Now a day's organizations are facing a lot of challenges to improve the level of commitment, skill, and motivation of the employees in workplace. They are devising various strategies to boost the employee morale. The above literature supports the fact that employees plays a major role in organizational success Companies are facing the challenges of increasing the level of commitment, motivation and job satisfaction among their employees. In this regard, it has became important to take into consideration the impact of employees' needs, motives and ambitions as part of the quality of work agenda.
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