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Motivating people at work

People only come to work for money. If they were allowed to do what they wanted they would have a chat or sit down and read the newspaper. This is why people who work require motivation. Motivation can come in many different forms but the most common form is goals to which we aspire, these goals are known as content theories, because they tell us the contents of the motive behind working. We inherit some of the goals that we desire and some we pick up through experience. If are goals are inherited then it is pointless trying to change them.

If we pick them up through experience they can potentially be changed. Everyone has an inherited need for survival. Our needs for food, oxygen, water and warmth can all be over powering. These needs are called drives and they are part of our body. We do not have to learn them, but we can override these drives. Motivation is the extent to which an individual will make an effort to do something. For a company to motivate its staff rewards must be offered, employees must know how to achieve these rewards, individuals must believe they are capable of achieving them.

If the employee is motivated they are likely to be more productive, to have better attendance, to produce better quality work and will be more open to change. According to a theorist called A. H. Maslow individuals will be motivated if the reward satisfies an unfulfilled need. Once satisfied a need no longer motivates, individuals will want the next level of need satisfied. (Business Advanced) Vroom’s expectation theory says that the extent to which individuals believe that they can achieve the reward that are offered affects their motivation.

If they have a high expectancy motivation is likely to be higher then if their expectancy that a reward can be achieved is low they will be less motivated. (Business Advanced) When an employer is thinking of an appropriate reward they must remember that all employees have different needs and ideas of what a reward is. The most common type of reward is a cash incentive, most people would think of that as a reward but if it is only given to one person who holds a position of important responsibility then it could be seen as a bribe.

When a mother wants her son or daughter to clean their room she might offer them a bar of chocolate as a reward for cleaning their room. If a company offered its employees a whole box of chocolate for doing some work they would not be happy. As a person gets older and has different experiences their ideas of a reward change with them. Even if you paid someone money not every attaches the same valve to it. For example some people in China earn 8 pounds a week and are happy with that, but if you paid someone here 8 pounds a week to do the same job they would not do it.

Everyone’s idea of a reward changes according to his or her climate and environment. Another way for an employer to motivate all their staffs is to offer them a bonus that they are capable of achieving and it must be seen to be a fair for the work done, otherwise the employees expectation will be low and they will be less motivated. In 1999 Sheila Ritchie and Peter Martin argue that ‘the task of the manager is to find out what it is that motivates people’.

Obverting that there has been little recent development in motivation theory, they aimed to devise a fresh approach and a practical tool. Their research identified twelve ‘motivational drivers’. The twelve factors were derived from the literature and from their observation as management consultants. They developed a questionnaire, which produces a motivational profile indicating the relative strength of each factor. 1,355 managers and other professionals, from lots of nationalities, completed this questionnaire. The order in which the factors are listed is based on the questionnaire scores.

This management group had relatively high levels of need for creativity, power and influence, and levels of need for relationship and good physical working conditions. Money was rated ninth. (Organizational Behaviour) This tells that money is not always the biggest driving force behind motivation. Biggest factor the need for creativity. The I think that for a company to motivate its staff well it first needs to find out what the employees think. They could do this by making up a questionnaire. Then look at the results and choose an appropriate reward.

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