Principles and practices of Management
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The nature of motivation:

Being able to effectively motivate employees is a challenge that managers face in all types and sizes of organizations. “Everything that we give to our workers gets returned to us in terms of efficiency, quality, loyalty, and innovation.”


Motivation is the willingness to exert high levels of effort to reach organizational goals, conditioned by the effort’s ability to satisfy some individual need.

A. Effort is a measure of intensity or drive. High levels of effort are unlikely to lead to favorable job performance unless the effort is channeled in a direction that benefits the organization.

B. A need is an internal state that makes certain outcomes appear attractive. An unsatisfied need creates tension that stimulates drives within an individual. These drives generate a search behavior to find particular goals that, if attained, will satisfy the need and reduce the tension.


Hence motivation is the force that energizes behavior, gives direction to behavior, and underlies the tendency to persist.

1.       A person’s motivation is not directly measurable, but must be inferred from behavior.

2.       Performance is a function of ability, motivation and working conditions.

3.       Besides hiring individual with ability to do the work, managers have the challenge to provide working conditions that nurture and support individual motivation to work toward organization goals.


The main elements of motivation have been identified based on numerous studies. A simplified model of motivation has been developed.

1.       Inner needs and cognitions lead to behaviors.

2.       Appropriate behaviors may result in rewards, which reinforce the behaviors, fulfill needs, and provide cognitive input regarding the future association of behaviors and rewards.

3.       Lack of rewards may lead to unfulfilled needs, un-reinforced behaviors, and cognitive input in the form of expectations about the future.


Intrinsic Motivators: A person’s internal desire to do some thing for his satisfaction, respect, prestige or loyalty.

Extrinsic Motivators: Factors of motivation that comes from outside (environment) or organization like pay, bonuses, tangible benefits etc.


Suggestions for motivating employees:

Several suggestions for motivating employees are given and are based on what is currently known about motivation.

          Recognize individual differences in terms of needs, attitudes, personality, and other important individual factors.

          Match people to jobs by identifying what needs are important to individuals and trying to provide jobs that allow them to fulfill those needs.

          Use goals because the literature on goal setting suggests that managers should ensure that employees have hard, specific goals and feedback on how well they’re doing in pursuit of those goals.

          Ensure that goals are perceived as attainable. Employees who see goals as unattainable will reduce their levels of effort.

          Individualize rewards. Because employees have different needs, what is a reward and reinforce to one may not work for another.

          Link rewards to performance by making rewards contingent on desired levels of performance.

          Check the system for equity. Employees should perceive that the rewards or outcomes are equal to the inputs given.

          Don’t ignore money. The allocation of performance-based increases, piecework bonuses, and other pay incentives is important in determining employee motivation.


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