What Factors Motivate Employees

What is the most important thing that can motivate employees With the rapid development of economic globalization, efficiency and quality determine the future of a firm. The fundamental factor, which determines the fortune of a firm, is employee, because if employees perform well and work efficiently, productivity will be considerably improved and large quantities of profits will be made.

The increasing number of managers has realized the fact that employees are playing vital roles in development of a firm. Consequently, appropriate measures are being taken to enhance the motivation of employees.Some people believe that adequate salary is the most important thing that can motivate employees, while more people hold the different view that other factors such as equal statue, achievable goals and appreciation have more positive influences on enhancing motivation. An abundance of evidence illustrates that job satisfaction, instead of salary, is the most significant thing in motivating employees. This essay will discuss three factors that of vital importance on ensuring job satisfaction, including fulfillment of requirements, closed relationship between employees and managers as well as flexible working schedules.

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Different people have individual requirements, which lead to different goals of working. As soon as achieving individual working goals and requirements, employees will be satisfied with jobs, and then be motivated. According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs theory, individual requirements can be divided into five levels. These levels can be generally divided into two parts: material requirements and psychological requirements. The fulfillment of psychological needs has longstanding effects on employees than meeting material needs.

Certainly, conducting proper mental compensation program is beneficial for satisfying employees’ increasing requirements in psychology. For, example, Tesco enable each worker to express suggestions on the working freely, through which not only working conditions will be improved but also employees will feel valued (The Times, 2010). In addition, opportunities of career training are necessary for achieving mental satisfaction. In order to adjust to the society which is full of challenges and competition, employees require adequate training to develop personal skills and then obtain a sense of achievement and advancement.Meanwhile, according to equity theory and expectancy theory, in order to reach the best consequence, the following two principles ought to be taken. One is that mental rewards are determined by individual performance and contributions.

Employees who have high performance and tremendous contributions will earn more praise or working condition improvement than those who have poor performance and few contributions. The other principle is that rewards are achievable for the majority. Different employees differ from one another in working ability and potentiality.As a consequence, levels of goals with suitable ranks of mental compensation should be fit for individuals (Madura, 2008). Therefore, fulfillment of individual requirements can exert considerable effects on motivating employees. Some groups of people are fond of making friends.

No matter which countries others come from, if they have the same interest to share with or the same topic to discuss with, they will feel close to each other. For these groups of people, relationship between managers and employees is the most important factor that affects motivation.Open-book management, in which employees are capable to play the leading role of the firm by participating in making decisions, is a successful practice of ‘relationship motivation theory ’. Before production decisions are eventually made, decision makers need to consider about almost all aspects of production, such as the cost of raw material, time arrangement, target customers and some possible problems in production process, because each decision is closely related to individual profits(Madura, 2008).Giving employees opportunities of comprehensive consideration will not only create more profits for firms, but also develop an equal relationship between managers and employees. If employees feel being paid attention to, they will be willing to spare no efforts to the firm. In addition to equality, intimated relationship is also necessary. Managers ought to care about employees’ emotional variations, which may result from family problems or mental health, and have more communication with employees, like having lunch together and offering some comfort by simple words.

If employees believe that they are working with friends instead of leaders, motivation will be increased. Flexible working schedule has positive association with job motivation. According to Pink’s research, if employees complete tasks ahead of deadline and guarantee high quality, an abundance of free time will be spared for family and self-improvement (Pink, 2009). Furthermore, Hawthorne’s experiment on the relationship between break time and productivity demonstrates that regular break with appropriate length leads to sharp increase in productivity (Madura, 2008).The reason is that flexible schedule which provides employees with large amounts of free time to accompany children produce positive psychological reactions and these reactions contribute directly to motivation. Therefore, variable time arrangement is the top motivator. Some young employees claim that salary which covers daily expenses is the most critical factor that forces them to work for long time, meanwhile, the amounts of salary can directly reflect the consequence of hard working and devotion.

However, these groups of people just take their own needs into account instead of considering about various requests of different people. Salary will just satisfy a small part of employees whose goals is making money. Salary, a fixed amount of money that being paid monthly or annually (MacMillan, 2007, p.

1313), is called based pay, which can stimulate employees to some degrees. However, Herzberg’s job satisfaction study demonstrates that sufficient salary can just prevent employees from dissatisfaction, which means increasing salary is not the most efficient method to obtain high satisfaction (Madura, 2008).Personal total income consists of based pay and reward pay, and the initial motivator is the later, as it has vital impacts on employees’ psychological satisfaction with present jobs (Wiley, 1997). Despite the fact that salary is a useful motivator for some groups of employees, the majority of employees will not gain high satisfaction purely through increasing salary. In conclusion, salary is not of the top motivator in contemporary society, as the vital motivating factors are diversified in various social groups.The fulfillment of physiological and psychological requirements through appropriate equal and achievable compensation program, the maintenance of close relationship between managers and employees as well as flexible working schedule, which play critical role in enhance job satisfaction, exert more significant influence on motivating employees than simply increase of salary. If all of these motivational factors work together, a promising future will be exposed to both human beings and the society. Reference: Madura, J.

(2008) Introduction to Business. 4th ed. Beijing: Post & Telecom Press.Macmillan English Dictionary (2007, p.

1313). Malaysia: Macmillan Publishers. Pink, D. (2009) Dan Pink on the surprising science of motivation [online video] Available from: http://www.

ted. com/talks/dan_pink_on_motivation. html. (Accessed 25 April 2011). The Times 100 (2010) Motivation Theory in Practice at Tesco. Available from: http://www.

thetimes100. co. uk/download-tesco-edition-15-full-case-study_132_396_1168 (Accessed 25 April 2011) Wiley, C. (1997) ‘What motivates employees according to over 40 years of motivation surveys’, International Journal of Manpower, 18(3), pp. 263-280