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The seminar paper will investigate the definition of motivation and look at several motivational theories and how these relate to the workplace environment. It will also look at the Psychological contract and how this affects both the employee and employer in the workplace. The paper will then summarise the best fit motivation theory for Logica and suggest recommendations for further investigation.
What is Motivation?
Motivation has many definitions from all different aspects and viewpoints. Kreitner states that Motivations is "the psychological process that gives behaviour purpose and direction" Kreitner, (1995) where as both Bedian and Higgins have slightly different views on what they feel motivation is;
"an internal drive to satisfy an unsatisfied need" Higgins, (1994)
"the will to achieve" Bedeian, (1993).
The best fit description for motivation is a combination of all three descriptions:
"The internal drive that gives behaviours and directions to achieve an unsatisfied need"
What motivates employees?
People are all motivated by different factors, some are motivated by the challenge they face in their job but there are also a vast array of other motivators for employees, such as;
Varied and interesting work
Training and development
Good work-life balance - eg Smart Working
Regular performance reviews and feedback
Recognition and reward for ideas or achieving targets
Crainer,S believes "You don't motivate individuals. You provide them with an environment to be self-motivated. It is a personal decision, but its management's job to provide the right environment." Crainer,S (1995)
A motivated employee can be a valuable asset to an organisation as they produce better results and ultimately help the organisation fulfil their aims and objectives. Other advantages of motivated employees are:
Higher quality of work
Better job satisfaction
On the other hand a demotivated employee can have an opposite effect on an organisation and can lead to:
Higher absence rate
Poor quality of work
Little to no job satisfaction
The three motivational theories that will be analysed in this seminar paper are:
Maslow's Hierarchy Of Needs
Hertzberg Two Factor Model
Adams Equity Theory
Herzberg's Two Factor Model
Herzberg's Two Factor Model believes that "People are motivated, by interesting work, challenge, and increasing responsibility. These intrinsic factors answer people's deep-seated need for growth and achievement." Herzberg, F. (2003).
Herzberg Two Factor Model comprises of Maintenance and Growth factors;
Maintenance (Hygiene) factors are not specific to job content and prevent dissatisfaction, these consist of but not limited to;
Salary, job security, work environment, relationships, level and quality of supervision
Growth (Motivators) factors are specific to job content and motivate to produce excellent performance, these consist of but are not limited to;
Achievement, recognition, responsibility and progression
Herzberg theory states that hygiene factors are required to ensure employees are not dissatisfied and motivation factors are needed to motivate the employees to achieve higher results.
Adam's Equity Theory
Adams' Equity Theory is based on upon the fact that an employee can become demotivated when they feel what they are putting in (inputs) are greater than what they receive back (outputs). A demotivated employee can be expected to respond in a number of different ways having a varied effect on the work environment; including de-motivation, reduced effort, or, in the worst case they could even become disruptive. Adams Equity Theory states that an employee will only be motivated when they feel the treatment they receive is fair.
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs
Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs Theory states that people are motivated to satisfy each level of need. Once one need has been achieved the employee moves to the next level and once this need has been fully satisfied it no longer motivates the employee.
Maslow identified 5 categories of needs (physiological, safety, social, esteem and self actualisation). Self actualisation is unlikely to be achieved by most and is therefore an effective source of motivation.
The pyramid above outlines 5 areas relating to Maslow's hierarchy of needs. In order to become fully motivated an employee needs to progress through each stage until they reach Self Actualisation. The bullet points below provide an example of how the 5 areas relate to the workplace;
Physiological Motivation: Employer provides ample breaks for lunch and rest and pay a wage that allows employees to buy their essentials.
Safety Needs: Employer provides a working environment which is safe, along with job security.
Social Needs: Employer generates a feeling of acceptance, belonging, and allows promotes employees to build up a network within the workplace.
Esteem Motivators: Employer recognize achievements by employees, promotion and provide job titles that make employees feel valued.
Self-Actualization: Employers offers employees challenging and meaningful work that enables employees to innovate, create, and progress to reach their short and long term goals.
A Psychological Contract is "The perceptions of the two parties, employee and employer, of what their mutual obligations are towards each other" Guest and Conway (2002) cited in CIPD (2009). The Psychological Contract has become more popular due to the nature of more jobs being outsourced, more flexible working hours and more part time workers.
A typical Psychological Contract includes;
Provide training opportunities
Enable career development
Provide constructive feedback
Learn new skills
To reward performance
A breach in the Psychological contract may occur when an employee perceives that their employer, has failed to deliver on what they feel was agreed or vice versa. Employees or employers who feel there has been a breach are likely to respond negatively, responses can consist of reduced motivation, reduced loyalty etc..
The Adams Equity Theory Model best fits Logica because of the way the organisation recognises employee contribution and input. Through performance reviews Logica rewards employees that are achieving their objectives and progressing through the career development levels. This enables employees to become more motivated as they have clear strategy of what they need to achieve in order to progress. Logica also recognises employees special contribution through their Diamond Award scheme which recognises any notable and extraordinary employee contributions in the work place, this links in to Adams Equity Theory in that if employees feel they get back what they put in they are more motivated than employees that feels they do not receive much in return for their contribution.
However it is important to remember that not everyone is motivated by the same needs, therefore it is impossible to specifically outline one theory that best fits an entire organisation as it can vary dramatically depending on the teams within the organisation.
Cook and Jacksons statement summarises the motivational factors present within Logica very well as it includes mention of Customer Focus and Innovation both of which are key values to Logica's business approach; "Today's managers are clearly more motivated by the intrinsic rewards of work such as challenges and a sense of purpose rather than jobs that simply provide an income. Whilst they are driven by key organisational values such as customer focus and professionalism, they are most personally motivated by environments that foster innovation and staff development and a climate of trust." Cook, P. And Jackson, N (2005)
Recommendations for further reading
The summaries raised from within this seminar paper also lead to more questions that with further reading would provide a more compelling view on motivation within an organisation.
Two recommendations for further reading are;
Would Adams Equity Theory be as successful in motivating staff in a different organisation e.g. Health Care?.
What part does the Psychological contract play in other organisations?