Organizational Success And Employee Satisfaction Management Essay

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 enviorment.Not only does engagement have the potential to significantly affect employee retention, productivity and loyalty, it is also a key link to customer satisfaction, company reputation and overall stakeholder value. 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.

Acknowledgements

I owe my deepest gratitude to Professor ………..who undertook to act as my ……… His wisdom, knowledge and commitment to the highest standards inspired and motivated me throughout my study.

I would like to give my heartiest thanks to my parents and family members who were always there cheering me in my good and bad times.

Contents

Introduction

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

Literature review

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.

Determinants of Employee Satisfaction

Researchers have found that a number of variables are related directly to job satisfaction while some acts as an indicator of job dissatisfaction.

Personal variables

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.

Work-related factors

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.

Other factors

Leadership

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.

Work Environment

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.

Employee Training/Programs

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.

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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 management and leadership development process is flexible and continuous, linking an individual’s development to the goals of the job and the organization

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. 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 at the 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.

Define the audience. Determine what the behaviors are that need to be changed or improved upon. Then determine whom the program will be targeted for. Is it for all company employees, or one specific department? Identify the people who will most benefit from the program and make a commitment to promote the program in that group.

Step 3: Identify how your program will be set up. There is no cast-in-stone formula to follow. Try different approaches and see what works best. Determine if you will recognize individual performance or team performance. Will it be peer recognition, or data and measurement related? Who will make the determinations of who receives the award(s)? Will there be a deadline or time frame for submission of candidates? Will the program take the form of a suggestion program, or will it be performance based? Will there be a theme for the program? The company must determine the criteria for the incentive or recognition before the implementation, and then track the data. If the data does not reflect what is needed, then either establish a new goal, or track a different data point – but either way make sure you communicate that the parameters of the program are changing!

Step4: Build a budget. There is no set cost for recognition programs. Items may be as inexpensive as a $5.00 gift certificate to a $50,000 car. The budget should be based on what the company can afford to put forth. But, if nothing is put forth, remember that a “thank you” only goes so far to improve morale or motivate employees.

Step 5: Seek help if you need it. Look to industry groups, human resource firms, or even your competitors to see what they are doing with their programs.

Step 6: Select the awards to be given. You value your employees. Why not extend that value to award items that match what your employees’ value. Movies, lunches, grocery certificates, electronics, quality clothing items, or cash are examples of items that could be valued by employees. Take a survey and see what people would like. Suggest price ranges (items under $20, items under $50, and items under $100.) You may be surprised what employees come up with, but be sure the awards are something they want. The biggest pitfall in recognition programs is offering an item that is not valued by the person receiving it.

Step 7: Establish the rules for the program. Common criteria for the program usually include: the duration or time frame of the program, the qualifications to be considered for an award, the requirements to be met, the selection process, and how the awards will be delivered. The rules should be clearly written, avoiding buzzwords and jargon. Keep it simple and understandable. Make sure the rules are fair and equitable to all parties involved.

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Step 8: Communicate the program to employees and staff. Once the essentials are in place, it’s time to get the employees involved and motivated! Develop a solid communications plan for the program that determines what will happen (and how) from beginning to end. Be as creative as you like, or delegate someone in your company to oversee the program. What promotional materials will be used and who will create them? How long will the initial promotional launch take? Don’t oversell or inundate the employees with too much information, but use the tools available (e-mail, voice mail, meetings, intranet systems, etc.) At the mid-point of the program, use a company newsletter or e-mail, or some other tool to communicate the changes that occurred because of the implementation of the program.

Step 9: Track the changes in performance. Did the program have the desired impact? Did employee attitudes or behaviors change in the desired way? Ask for employee feedback on the programs success. Develop quantifiable methods to determine if the program was a business success.

Step 10: Announce the winners. Congratulate the top performers but be sure to show appreciation to the whole team for their efforts. Meetings provide the perfect opportunity to recognize workers for a job well done. Public recognition reinforces their achievements and serves as a reminder to others to do an even better job next time. Send congratulatory letters to the employees at home (a nice surprise) or at work

Step 11: Deliver the awards. Pay attention to the details of the presentation. First, a letter of congratulations is always required. Deliver any tangible awards on the date promised. If a “ceremony” is to take place, be sure to get the buy in of the participants, and determine if they would just like their name mentioned, or if they would be willing to be called to the front to receive their award. Make sure their immediate supervisor and top company officer(s) are on hand for the ceremony. If the delivery is to be less elaborate, the supervisor and company officer(s) should still be there to present the award and their congratulations and thanks for a job well done.

Step 12: Maintain the momentum. Just because the program is over, doesn’t mean it can’t still contribute to the business success. Will you run another program? Will the principles and lessons learned from this program be transferable to another program? Evaluate what worked (and what didn’t) in this program and apply it to the next one. Determine if this program helped enhance employer-employee communication, and ask employees for ideas and suggestions on what to do next time, or differently (Recognition).

Although organizations may 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.

Employee Motivation

Motivational theories were briefly mentioned in the motivation and recognition portion of this paper.Human nature can be very simple, yet very complex too. An understanding and appreciation of this is a prerequisite to effective employee motivation in the workplace and therefore, effective management and leadership. In order to maximize productivity and efficiency in the workplace, employees must be motivated. When employees feel motivated they are more creative, more efficient, and most importantly, satisfied with their work and the organization that they work for (Fig. 7).

Although there are several cited motivation theories, two of the more popular will be discussed here: Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, which has previously been mentioned in this paper, and Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory (Fig. 8). Work motivation is one of the key areas of organizational psychology. Using these two different motivational theories, this paper will analyze the motivation triggers used to maximize employee motivation and satisfaction.

Figure 8: Motivational Theories

Source: Gemmy Allen

Frederick Herzberg developed a two-factor theory of motivation that makes clear what the employer can bring to the motivation partnership. According to Herzberg, two factors affect employee motivation: dissatisfiers (sometimes referred to as Hygiene) and motivators. While at work, the organization is in control of both factors (Erven and Milligan 2001). Dissatisfaction (hygiene) or extrinsic factors, excessive hours, unsafe working conditions, job security, and low wages, produce job dissatisfaction. Motivator or intrinsic factors, such as increased responsibility, adequate training and development opportunities, recognition, and satisfying work, produce job satisfaction (Fig.9).

Figure 9: Motivation & Satisfaction Levels

Source: Ohio State University

The implications for the employer’s side of the motivation partnership are clear. The dissatisfiers must be removed before motivators can work. Employees working in unsafe conditions with unfair pay will not be motivated by recognition and delegation of additional responsibility. However, if improvements in both safety and pay are made, employees may still not become motivated. Instead, if all else remains the same the employees will become satisfied but not motivated (Erven and Milligan 2001).

The second of the two psychological theories of motivation, and probably the most widely recognized, was first introduced by Abraham Maslow and is known as Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Figure 10: Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Source: Gemmy Allen

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs identifies five levels of needs, which are best seen as a hierarchy with the most basic need emerging first and the most sophisticated need last (Fig. 10). People move up the hierarchy one level at a time. Gratified needs lose their strength and the next level of needs is activated. As basic or lower-level needs are satisfied, higher level needs become operative. Therefore, a satisfied need is not a motivator (Allen 1998). The basic human needs, according to Maslow are: physiological needs (lowest), safety needs, love needs, esteem needs, and self-actualization needs (highest). This theory indicates that man’s behavior is therefore dominated by his unsatisfied needs. As each need is satisfied, another is created, making the cycle a perpetual, ongoing activity of searching for perfection through self-development (Accel 2006).

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Motivating employees is a constant task that requires an understanding of employee psychology, as well as an understanding of individual motivators. The key to motivation unlocks human potential. To be effective, managers need to understand what motivates employees within the context of the roles they perform. Of all the functions a manager performs, employee motivation is one of the most complex management issues they face. As employees find an outlet for their creativity and satisfaction with their work, the work they perform becomes a more important part of their life. As a result, employees become more productive and experience higher rates of satisfaction with their employment (Erven and Milligan 2001). In the past, managers assumed incorrectly, that all it would take to motivate employees is to pay them more. It is conceivable for an organization to have more employees than a competitor yet produce less and have disgruntled, low-output employees even though the organization is paying their employees more than the competitor. The research has clearly shown that increased motivation and satisfaction can increase worker output. Organizations are beginning to understand that they are able to motivate increased productivity and employee satisfaction by means other than financial incentives (Increasing Productivity 2005).

Conclusion and Limitation

The results suggested that the employees had a moderate level of job satisfaction with the whole job situations (overall job satisfaction). With a closer look, it indicated that the highest satisfaction occurred in the areas of the work itself, supervision, and coworkers. The employees were highly satisfied with the work itself because they found that their job was interesting, challenging, and enjoyable and had enough authority and freedom to perform their job. Supervision also made employees were highly satisfied because of the high competency in doing job of supervisor and the good encouragement, opportunity to express opinions, support, fairness, and interest in the feelings of subordinates provided by supervisor. The employees were also highly satisfied with coworkers because their coworkers were highly competent in doing their job. They received good cooperation and supports form their coworkers and there were no bickering and fighting at work. However, the employees were moderately satisfied with other worked-related variables, including pay, fringe benefits, opportunity for advancement, contingent rewards, and communication.

Asking from the employees’ perspectives, it appeared that the employees rated pay as the most important factor influencing their job satisfaction followed by fringe benefits and coworkers. However, the employees at the managerial and non-managerial levels perceived different degrees of importance. The non-managerial employees perceived pay, fringe benefits and coworker as the most three important would be because these motivational factors could fulfill their basic needs according to the Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (Moorhead and Griffin, 1998). On the other hand, the employees at the managerial level rated coworkers, opportunity for advancement, and work itself as the most important factor influencing their job satisfaction. This might be because a good work group or effective team could easily helped them achieved the best results. Similarly, the work itself allowed them to apply their abilities and skills and embody a diversity of tasks, freedom, and performance feedback. Regarding the relationships between the personal variables of the employees and their job satisfaction, it appeared that there was very little relationships between these two variables.

7. References

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