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Many of the main models of motivation have been adapted to understanding motivation in organizations and in the workplace.
At lower levels of Maslow's hierarchy of needs, such as Physiological needs, money has a motivating effect on staff that lasts only for a short period (in accordance with Herzberg's two-factor model of motivation). At higher levels of the hierarchy, praise, respect, recognition, empowerment and a sense of belonging are far more powerful motivators than money, as both Abraham Maslow and Douglas McGregor's Theory X and theory Y have demonstrated vividly.
Maslow has money at the lowest level of the hierarchy and shows other needs are better motivators to staff. McGregor places money in his Theory X category and feels it is a poor motivator. Praise and recognition are placed in the Theory Y category and are considered stronger motivators than money.
- Motivated employees always look for better ways to do a job.
- Motivated employees are more quality oriented.
- Motivated workers are more productive.
The average workplace is about midway between the extremes of high threat and high opportunity. Motivation by threat is a dead-end strategy, and naturally staff are more attracted to the opportunity side of the motivation curve than the threat side.
Managers need to understand how company employees see them in order to manage the impression they make, not just their intentions. Don Sheelen notes that "If a business wants its people to make a lot of money for them, then it must set high standards and give employees something they can get excited about." According to the system of scientific management developed by Frederick Winslow Taylor, a worker's motivation is solely determined by pay, and therefore management need not consider psychological or social aspects of work. In essence scientific management bases human motivation wholly on extrinsic rewards and discards the idea of intrinsic rewards.
In contrast, David McClelland believed that workers could not be motivated by the mere need for money-- in fact, extrinsic motivation (e.g., money) could extinguish intrinsic motivation such as achievement motivation, though money could be used as an indicator of success for various motives, e.g., keeping score. In keeping with this view, his consulting firm, McBer & Company, had as its first motto "To make everyone productive, happy, and free." For McClelland, satisfaction lay in aligning a person's life with their fundamental motivations.
Arthur Carmazzi, Directive Communication suggests that motivation and performance are products of the environment.
Elton Mayo found out that the social contacts a worker has at the workplace are very important and that boredom and repetitiveness of tasks lead to reduced motivation. Mayo believed that workers could be motivated by acknowledging their social needs and making them feel important. As a result, employees were given freedom to make decisions on the job and greater attention was paid to informal work groups. Mayo named the model the Hawthorne effect. His model has been judged as placing undue reliance on social contacts at work situations for motivating employees.
Scientific management is a philosophy and set of methods that stressed the scientific study and organization of work at operational level for improving efficiency. It is associated with Frederick Winslow Taylor who is called the “father of Scientific Management.”
Scientific Management has contributed the following techniques that are used even today:
- Scientific method of doing work.
- Planning tasks.
- Specialization and division of labour.
- Time and motion studies.
This approach has been criticised that David Mcclelland dehumanized workers by treating them as mere factors of production. David believed that workers could be motivated by mere need for money i.e. C=economic gains by the form of higher wages. In reality, workers need sense of job security, social fulfillment and a challenging job, other than a good pay.
Human Relations Model
Elton Mayo found out that the social contacts a worker has at the workplace are very important and that boredom and repetitiveness of tasks lead to reduced motivation. Mayo believed that workers could be motivated by acknowledging their social needs and making them feel important. As a result, employees were given freedom to make decisions on the job and greater attention was paid to informal work groups. Mayo named the model the Hawthorne effect. The problem with his model is undue reliance on social contacts at work situations for motivating employee
- Employee motivation
- Extrinsic motivation
- Intrinsic motivation
- Motivation training
- Motivation when managing groups or teams
References & Bibliography
- Dickson, W. J. (1973). Hawthorne experiments. In C. Heyel (ed.), The encyclopedia of management, 2nd ed. (pp. 298-302). New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold.
- Harpaz, I. (1990). The importance of work goals: an international perspective. Journal of International Business Studies, 21. 75-93.
- Herzberg, F., Mausner, B., & Snyderman, B. B. (1959). The motivation to work. New York: John Wiley & Sons.
- Lindner,J.R.(1998). Understanding Employee Motivation. Journal of Extension,Volume 36 Number 3. Full text]
- Kovach, K. A. (1987). What motivates employees? Workers and supervisors give different answers. Business Horizons, 30. 58-65.
- Maslow, A. H. (1943). A theory of human motivation. Psychological Review, July 1943. 370-396.
- Smith, G. P. (1994). Motivation. In W. Tracey (ed.), Human Resources Management and Development Handbook (2nd ed.).
- Smith, K. L. (1990). The future of leaders in Extension. Journal of Extension, 28 (1).
- Terpstra, D. E. (1979). Theories of motivation: borrowing the best. Personnel Journal, 58. 376.
- Vroom, V. H. (1964). Work and motivation. New York: Wiley.
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