Management Essays – Motivation and Management

Motivation and Management

As human beings, people have their own drives, aspirations and needs. The top manager of the organization must recognize these needs in order to motivate his employees to work the best of their abilities (Gabriel 224). To be effective, top managers must understand how to motivate their employees and how they can use to direct employees toward attaining organizational goals and objectives.

Motivation is the process of initiating and directing behavior. The personal needs of an employee are satisfied as long as he or she is motivated to perform the assigned tasks. The manager is able to achieve his goals when he can satisfy both the employees’ needs and those of the organization (Gabriel 224).

However, motivation can have an effect on the output of an organization and concerns both quantity and quality (Mathis and Jackson 79). For instance, an organization relies heavily on the efficiency of their production employees to make sure that products are manufactured in numbers that meet demand for the week. If these employees lack the motivation to produce completed products to meet the demand, then the organization will face a problem leading to disastrous consequences. The employees are the greatest assets of the organization, no matter how efficient the technology and equipment may be (Pepitone and Bruce 2). Therefore, the success of a business is often the result of motivated employees. In order to motivate the employees, the organizations need to use motivational techniques such as providing a fun workplace, compensation program, and training and development program.

An employee who is unmotivated means there is some imbalance or dissatisfaction in his or her relationship to the environment. Nowadays, employee motivation is essential for every organization. Job satisfactions are declining among the employees of the organization. There are increasing numbers of employees who are eager to find a balance in work and family life (Kast and Rosenzweig 244). In November 2003 a survey made by CareerBuilder, a leading job-search Web site, revealed the level of employees’ dissatisfaction. The survey found that nearly one in four employees now dissatisfied with their present jobs, there will be a 20 percent increase over 2001 levels. It is predicted that some six out of ten employees are planning to leave their present jobs for other organizations within the next two years. Also, a similar survey made by the Society for Human Resource Professionals (SHRM) revealed that more than eight out of ten workers are going to look for a new job when the economy goes up (Kepler 63). The increasing numbers of job dissatisfaction can bring negative effects to the organization’s performance. Employees who are not happy with their current jobs tend to leave for other organizations. As a result, employee turnover will become a serious problem in today’s corporate environment.

In addition, turnover costs are very high and expensive. It can significantly affect the financial performance of an organization. These turnover costs are such as direct costs and indirect costs. Direct costs include recruitment, selection, and training of new employees. Most of the time and expense go into this process. In contrast, indirect costs include increased workloads and overtime expenses for co-workers, as well as reduced productivity associated with low motivated employees (Branham 192).

Estimated costs vary from organization to organization, some as low as a few hundred dollars to as high as four times the annual salary of an employee. For example, a study shows that the U.S. businesses spend billions of dollars recruiting and replacing their employees. It is estimated that the costs of replacing an individual employee is from $2,000 to $11,000. On the other hand, its estimated cost to replace a manager is $40,000 and above (Mathis and Jackson 79). Apart from that, employee turnover can weaken the productivity and profitability of an organization and significantly increase the organization’s professional injury rate (Wertz and Bryant 22).

Employees need to feel that their work is meaningful and beneficial to their organization. Therefore, the top manager should act as a motivator to lighten up their employees’ passion and purpose in achieving organizational goals. Additionally, it is important and necessary for the top manager to create a positive working environment in the organization.

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Clearly, a fun and excited workplace would be best for employees to work together as an organization to accomplish specific goals and objectives. Employees who have been doing the same tasks for a long time, it is quite likely they are bored and their job performance is below average. Eventually, their productivity and work quality will continue to decrease, and the organization will begin to notice that there will be an increase in mistakes and bad judgment.

The first logical step in improving this negative situation is to create an accurate job description. It is a document that clearly and objectively defines the employee’s job in rational, clear terms as well as lays out their responsibilities, obligations and reporting relationships up, down and across the organizational hierarchy (Gabriel 227). In this step the top manager can put leadership skills to work. It will also help the organization see opportunities for change and growth in the position and in the employees’ career path. In addition, the top manager can also encourage the employee to identify what he or she would rather be doing as well as find opportunities for improving their skills and knowledge. Although the employee may not have any idea what else they would like to be doing, this is an opportunity for top manager or Human Resource manager to explain the next steps, such as more knowledge, greater skill development and enhanced abilities, on the career ladder that would lead to a promotion. In fact, this is a key source of motivation that will help employee see opportunities for professional growth. The process of participating in the creation of a job description can serve to clarify the employee’s roles and responsibilities as well as to encourage their enthusiasm for work again (Gabriel 225).

Once the job description has been created, the organization can look for further source of motivation to liven up and regain the strength of bored employees. Frederick Herzberg, author of The Motivation to Work, said that employees can best be motivated by three techniques which include job rotation, job enlargement and job enrichment (Gabriel 228).

The first technique of employee motivation is job rotation which involves cross training employees, or teaching employees about each other’s jobs. For instance, in the finance department, employee from accounts payable can learn the accounts receivable function and vice versa. The process of job rotation is motivating because the additional tasks and responsibilities are new and different (Gabriel 228). Moreover, employees will feel a sense of achievement by expanding their job knowledge and capabilities. The value in cross training for the organization is that individuals can stand-in for each other when illness or vacations come up, thus further increase in their sense of accomplishment and value to the organization. This is a good strategy for organizations because many of the jobs an employee may be asked to do.

Another source of motivation is job enlargement. In this technique, employees are given a wider extent of tasks and responsibilities within their own job. For example, in the finance department, accounts receivable employee may increase the number of accounts they are responsible for or may expand their tasks by sending late notices to a wider geographical area or be in charge of more names in the client list (Gabriel 228).

The third technique for employee motivation is job enrichment. In this technique, the organization increases the depth of employee’s responsibilities, not by increasing the number of tasks but by increasing the complexity of the tasks. Again, in the finance department example, the organization could increase the amount of responsibilities and authority of the employee (Gabriel 228). Instead of being given more accounts to be in charge of, accounts receivable employee could now be in charge of follow-up on the calls, talking with bill collection agencies, and designing work flow issues.

Furthermore, the process of regaining the strength of bored employees does not need to be an awesome one. It can be simply begin with an effective job description, which clearly outlines their roles, responsibilities and authorities. In this case, employees can increase their levels of motivation, action and performance on the job while increasing the breadth and the depth of their job responsibilities.

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Employee compensation refers to all work-related pay or rewards that go to employees. It consists of direct financial payments in the form of wages, salaries, incentives, commissions, and bonuses, and indirect payments in the form of financial limit benefits like employer-paid insurance and vacations (Dessler 318). At the present time, employees are always concern about the questions of incentives and rewards. Many employees are now looking for jobs that provide compensation and incentive benefits.

Therefore, the increase of job dissatisfaction is often the result of low employee compensation. Some employees have been working hard to increase productivity and profitability of the organization but did not get anything in return. Sooner or later, these unmotivated employees will not satisfy with their current job and choose to leave for other organizations.

In order to change the employee’s perception about the organization, they need to develop an overall strategic compensation program. This program includes not only base and variable pay scales, but long-term incentive compensation, bonus and gain-sharing plans, benefit plans to address the health and welfare issues of the employees, and non-cash rewards. In addition, organization can motivate their employees by offering a standard benefit package, including health and life insurance, vacation and leave policies, and investment and retirement plans (Dessler 319).

The organization can also examine the issues and needs of employees and try to develop creative program, such as fitness center memberships. Through this program, the organization will be able to send strong message to the public regarding company culture and values. Moreover, the creativity in compensation and benefits can make quite a difference to the welfare of employee. Hence, it is an effective way of motivating employees.

Moreover, the organization should provide more learning opportunities such as training and development program for their employees. For many employees, learning new skills is as important as the money they earn. It helps to identify career paths and provide developmental opportunities for employees early in their jobs with the organization. Employees who had never attended any training programs will feel a lack of knowledge and skills while performing tasks assigned by their manager. As time goes by, managers of the organization will not acknowledge these unskilled employees. Consequently, the employees’ commitment and loyalty for the organization will slowly decrease.

Nevertheless, training and development program is used for workplace learning to improve performance. It is designed to help employees grow in their current positions, build loyalty and aid employee retention. The quality of employees and their development through training and education are major factors in determining long-term profitability of an organization (Dessler 313). There are two methods of training employees, which include on-the-job training and off-the-job training.

On-the-job refers to training that is given in a normal working situation, using the actual tools, equipment, documents or materials that they will use when fully trained. The most common methods of this training are coaching, projects, and demonstration or instruction. On-the-job training is usually most effective for vocational work. It is one of the best training methods because it is planned, organized, and conducted at the employee’s workplace (Mathis and Jackson 262). On-the-job training will generally be the primary method used for broadening employee skills and increasing productivity. It is particularly appropriate for developing proficiency skills unique to an employee’s job, especially jobs that are relatively easy to learn and require locally-owned equipment and facilities (Bratton and Gold 274). Therefore, morale, productivity, and professionalism will normally be high in those organizations that provide on-the-job training program.

On the other hand, off-the-job training takes place away from normal work situation which means that the employee is not regarded as productive worker when training is taking place. The main types of this training are revision courses, sponsored courses in high education, computer-based training, and block release courses (Mathis and Jackson 262). Off-the-job trainings may take place at training agency or local college, although many large organizations also have their own training centers. Moreover, training can take the form of lectures or self-study and can be used to develop more general skills and knowledge that can be used in a variety of situations, for example, management skills program (Bratton and Gold 274). An advantage of off-the-job training is that it allows employee to get away from work and totally concentrate on the training being given. This type of training is most effective for training concepts and ideas.

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Furthermore, the organization will receive specific benefits from training and developing employees, which include increased productivity, reduced employee turnover, increased efficiency resulting in financial gains, and decreased need for supervision (Bratton and Gold 274). Therefore, training and development program is an important process of motivating employees in the organization.

In summary, an enjoyable place of work is finest for workers to achieve their ambitions. There are four methods to build an enjoyable workplace. There are job description, job rotation, job enlargement, and job enrichment. Firstly, job description is a paper which describes the worker’s task in a reasonable and fair way. It motivates worker to classify in what type of task that suits them. Workers can look for opportunities in enhancing their expertise and learning. Secondly, job rotation refers to instructing workers about other staffs’ tasks. Through job rotation, workers are able to grow in learning and abilities. Thirdly, job enlargement refers to expand of jobs and duties according to workers’ own tasks. Lastly, job enrichment involves enlarging the workers’ duties by extending the amount of jobs.

Employees’ satisfaction of work normally comes from rewards plans. Companies provide these plans to transform their workers’ overview about the company. These rewards plans include monetary and non-monetary rewards. Workers will be happy with the creative rewards of this program. Other non-monetary advantages include physical condition warranties, holiday and time off documents, and withdrawal schemes.

Besides that, learning encourages workers to progress in their jobs, enhance faithfulness, and helps to keep current workers. It assists new workers to recognize and look for profession chances. The methods of training and development program that can be used by the company are on-the-job training and off-the-job training. On-the-job training usually instructs employees during their job, by using appliances and devices that are available at their workplace. In contrast, off-the-job training is guiding workers outside their workplace.

In conclusion, staff members ought to be given inspiration by companies which consist of enjoyable place of work, rewards plan, and learning. For my suggestion, employees’ motivation is very important to an organization. Every large and small organization must enhance their employees’ fulfillment through motivational techniques. It is a way to encourage employees in obtaining company’s goals and achieving higher profits. As a result, many organizations will be able to expand their business markets from local to international markets. Eventually, these organizations will become more effective in doing business and will increase the economies of our country in the future.


  • James S. Pepitone, Anne Bruce, 1998, Motivating employees, McGraw-Hill Professional, United States of America.
  • Robert L. Mathis, John Harold Jackson, 2006, Human Resource Management, Thomson South-Western, United States of America.
  • Kay Kepler, 1994, Achieving Job Satisfaction, Thomson Crisp Learning.
  • Leigh Branham, 2005, The 7 Hidden Reasons Employees Leave, AMACOM Div American Management Association.
  • Keith R. Wertz, James J. Bryant Managing, 2001, Workers’ Compensation: A Guide to Injury Reduction and Effective Claim Management, Lewis Publishers, United States.
  • Vincent Gabriel, Management, 1989, Longman Singapore Publishers (Pte) Limited, Singapore.
  • John Bratton, Jeffrey Gold, T 2001, Human Resource Management: Theory and Practice, Routledge, Europe.
  • Fremont E. Kast, James E. Rosenzweig, 1981, Organization and Management: A Systems and Contingency Approach, McGraw-Hill, Tokyo, Japan.
  • Gary Dessler, 1998, Management: Leading People and Organizations in the 21st Century, Prentice-Hall International, Inc., United States of America.
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