What is Motivation ?
Motivation is the word derived from the word â€™motiveâ€™ which means needs, desires, wants or drives within the individuals. It is the process of stimulating people to actions to accomplish the goals. In the work goal context the psychological factors stimulating the peopleâ€™s behaviour can be -
desire for money
team work, etc
One of the most important functions of management is to create willingness amongst the employees to perform in the best of their abilities. Therefore the role of a leader is to arouse interest in performance of employees in their jobs. The process of motivation consists of three stages:-
A felt need or drive
A stimulus in which needs have to be aroused
When needs are satisfied, the satisfaction or accomplishment of goals.
Therefore, we can say that motivation is a psychological phenomenon which means needs and wants of the individuals have to be tackled by framing an incentive plan.
Maslowâ€™s Need Hierarchy Model
Human behavior is goal-directed. Motivation cause goal-directed behaviour. It is through motivation that needs can be handled and tackled purposely. This can be understood by understanding the hierarchy of needs by manager. The needs of individual serves as a driving force in human behaviour. Therefore, a manager must understand the â€œhierarchy of needsâ€. Maslow has proposed â€œThe Need Hierarchy Modelâ€.
FIGURE - Maslowâ€™s Need Hierarchy Model
The needs have been classified into the following in order:
Physiological needs- These are the basic needs of an individual which includes food, clothing, shelter, air, water, etc. These needs relate to the survival and maintenance of human life.
Safety needs- These needs are also important for human beings. Everybody wants job security, protection against danger, safety of property, etc.
Social needs- These needs emerge from society. Man is a social animal. These needs become important. For example- love, affection, belongingness, friendship, conversation, etc.
Esteem needs- These needs relate to desire for self-respect, recognition and respect from others.
Self-actualization needs- These are the needs of the highest order and these needs are found in those person whose previous four needs are satisfied. This will include need for social service, meditation.
Motivation Incentives - Incentives to motivate employees
Incentive is an act or promise for greater action. It is also called as a stimulus to greater action. Incentives are something which are given in addition to wagers. It means additional remuneration or benefit to an employee in recognition of achievement or better work. Incentives provide a spur or zeal in the employees for better performance. It is a natural thing that nobody acts without a purpose behind. Therefore, a hope for a reward is a powerful incentive to motivate employees. Besides monetary incentive, there are some other stimuli which can drive a person to better. This will include job satisfaction, job security, job promotion, and pride for accomplishment. Therefore, incentives really can sometimes work to accomplish the goals of a concern. The need of incentives can be many:-
To increase productivity,
To drive or arouse a stimulus work,
To enhance commitment in work performance,
To psychologically satisfy a person which leads to job satisfaction,
To shape the behavior or outlook of subordinate towards work,
To inculcate zeal and enthusiasm towards work,
To get the maximum of their capabilities so that they are exploited and utilized maximally.
Therefore, management has to offer the following two categories of incentives to motivate employees:-
Monetary incentives- Those incentives which satisfy the subordinates by providing them rewards in terms of rupees. Money has been recognized as a chief source of satisfying the needs of people. Money is also helpful to satisfy the social needs by possessing various material items. Therefore, money not only satisfies psychological needs but also the security and social needs. Therefore, in many factories, various wage plans and bonus schemes are introduced to motivate and stimulate the people to work.
Non-monetary incentives- Besides the monetary incentives, there are certain non-financial incentives which can satisfy the ego and self- actualization needs of employees. The incentives which cannot be measured in terms of money are under the category of â€œNon- monetary incentivesâ€. Whenever a manager has to satisfy the psychological needs of the subordinates, he makes use of non-financial incentives. Non- financial incentives can be of the following types:-
Security of service- Job security is an incentive which provides great motivation to employees. If his job is secured, he will put maximum efforts to achieve the objectives of the enterprise. This also helps since he is very far off from mental tension and he can give his best to the enterprise.
Praise or recognition- The praise or recognition is another non- financial incentive which satisfies the ego needs of the employees. Sometimes praise becomes more effective than any other incentive. The employees will respond more to praise and try to give the best of their abilities to a concern.
Suggestion scheme- The organization should look forward to taking suggestions and inviting suggestion schemes from the subordinates. This inculcates a spirit of participation in the employees. This can be done by publishing various articles written by employees to improve the work environment which can be published in various magazines of the company. This also is helpful to motivate the employees to feel important and they can also be in search for innovative methods which can be applied for better work methods. This ultimately helps in growing a concern and adapting new methods of operations.
Job enrichment- Job enrichment is another non- monetary incentive in which the job of a worker can be enriched. This can be done by increasing his responsibilities, giving him an important designation, increasing the content and nature of the work. This way efficient worker can get challenging jobs in which they can prove their worth. This also helps in the greatest motivation of the efficient employees.
Promotion opportunities- Promotion is an effective tool to increase the spirit to work in a concern. If the employees are provided opportunities for the advancement and growth, they feel satisfied and contented and they become more committed to the organization.
The above non- financial tools can be framed effectively by giving due concentration to the role of employees. A combination of financial and non- financial incentives help together in bringing motivation and zeal to work in a concern.
Positive incentives are those incentives which provide a positive assurance for fulfilling the needs and wants. Positive incentives generally have an optimistic attitude behind and they are generally given to satisfy the psychological requirements of employees. For example-promotion, praise, recognition, perks and allowances, etc. It is positive by nature.
Negative incentives are those whose purpose is to correct the mistakes or defaults of employees. The purpose is to rectify mistakes in order to get effective results. Negative incentive is generally resorted to when positive incentive does not works and a psychological set back has to be given to employees. It is negative by nature. For example- demotion, transfer, fines, penalties.
Importance of Motivation
Motivation is a very important for an organization because of the following benefits it provides:-
Puts human resources into action
Every concern requires physical, financial and human resources to accomplish the goals. It is through motivation that the human resources can be utilized by making full use of it. This can be done by building willingness in employees to work. This will help the enterprise in securing best possible utilization of resources.
Improves level of efficiency of employees
The level of a subordinate or a employee does not only depend upon his qualifications and abilities. For getting best of his work performance, the gap between ability and willingness has to be filled which helps in improving the level of performance of subordinates. This will result into-
Increase in productivity,
Reducing cost of operations, and
Improving overall efficiency.
Leads to achievement of organizational goals
The goals of an enterprise can be achieved only when the following factors take place :-
There is best possible utilization of resources,
There is a co-operative work environment,
The employees are goal-directed and they act in a purposive manner,
Goals can be achieved if co-ordination and co-operation takes place simultaneously which can be effectively done through motivation.
Builds friendly relationship
Motivation is an important factor which brings employees satisfaction. This can be done by keeping into mind and framing an incentive plan for the benefit of the employees. This could initiate the following things:
Monetary and non-monetary incentives,
Promotion opportunities for employees,
Disincentives for inefficient employees.
In order to build a cordial, friendly atmosphere in a concern, the above steps should be taken by a manager. This would help in:
Effective co-operation which brings stability,
Industrial dispute and unrest in employees will reduce,
The employees will be adaptable to the changes and there will be no resistance to the change,
This will help in providing a smooth and sound concern in which individual interests will coincide with the organizational interests,
This will result in profit maximization through increased productivity.
Leads to stability of work force
Stability of workforce is very important from the point of view of reputation and goodwill of a concern. The employees can remain loyal to the enterprise only when they have a feeling of participation in the management. The skills and efficiency of employees will always be of advantage to employees as well as employees. This will lead to a good public image in the market which will attract competent and qualified people into a concern. As it is said, â€œOld is goldâ€ which suffices with the role of motivation here, the older the people, more the experience and their adjustment into a concern which can be of benefit to the enterprise.
From the above discussion, we can say that motivation is an internal feeling which can be understood only by manager since he is in close contact with the employees. Needs, wants and desires are inter-related and they are the driving force to act. These needs can be understood by the manager and he can frame motivation plans accordingly. We can say that motivation therefore is a continuous process since motivation process is based on needs which are unlimited. The process has to be continued throughout.
We can summarize by saying that motivation is important both to an individual and a business. Motivation is important to an individual as:
Motivation will help him achieve his personal goals.
If an individual is motivated, he will have job satisfaction.
Motivation will help in self-development of individual.
An individual would always gain by working with a dynamic team.
Similarly, motivation is important to a business as:
The more motivated the employees are, the more empowered the team is.
The more is the team work and individual employee contribution, more profitable and successful is the business.
During period of amendments, there will be more adaptability and creativity.
Motivation will lead to an optimistic and challenging attitude at work place.
Motivation and Morale - Relationship and Differences
Morale can be defined as the total satisfaction derived by an individual from his job, his work-group, his superior, the organization he works for and the environment. It generally relates to the feeling of individualâ€™s comfort, happiness and satisfaction.
According to Davis, â€œMorale is a mental condition of groups and individuals which determines their attitude.â€
In short, morale is a fusion of employeesâ€™ attitudes, behaviours, manifestation of views and opinions - all taken together in their work scenarios, exhibiting the employeesâ€™ feelings towards work, working terms and relation with their employers. Morale includes employeesâ€™ attitudes on and specific reaction to their job.
There are two states of morale:
High morale - High morale implies determination at work- an essential in achievement of management objectives. High morale results in:
A keen teamwork on part of the employees.
Organizational Commitment and a sense of belongingness in the employees mind.
Immediate conflict identification and resolution.
Healthy and safe work environment.
Effective communication in the organization.
Increase in productivity.
Low morale - Low morale has following features:
Greater grievances and conflicts in organization.
High rate of employee absenteeism and turnover.
Dissatisfaction with the superiors and employers.
Poor working conditions.
Decrease in productivity.
Lack of motivation.
Though motivation and morale are closely related concepts, they are different in following ways:
While motivation is an internal-psychological drive of an individual which urges him to behave in a specific manner, morale is more of a group scenario.
Higher motivation often leads to higher morale of employees, but high morale does not essentially result in greatly motivated employees as to have a positive attitude towards all factors of work situation may not essentially force the employees to work more efficiently.
While motivation is an individual concept, morale is a group concept. Thus, motivation takes into consideration the individual differences among the employees, and morale of the employees can be increased by taking those factors into consideration which influence group scenario or total work settings.
Motivation acquires primary concern in every organization, while morale is a secondary phenomenon because high motivation essentially leads to higher productivity while high morale may not necessarily lead to higher productivity.
Things tied to morale are usually things that are just part of the work environment, and things tied to motivation are tied to the performance of the individual.
Staff Motivation - Motivation Tips for Employees
Employees are the building blocks of an organization. Organizational success depends on the collective efforts of the employees. The employees will collectively contribute to organizational growth when they are motivated.
Below mentioned are some tips for motivating the staff / employees in an organization:
Evaluate yourself- In order to motivate, encourage and control your staffâ€™s behaviour, it is essential to understand, encourage and control your own behaviour as a manager. Work upon utilizing your strengths and opportunities to neutralize and lower the negative impact of your weaknesses and organizational threats. The manager should adopt the approach â€œYouâ€™re OK - Iâ€™m OKâ€.
Be familiar with your staff- The manager should be well acquainted with his staff. The more and the better he knows his staff, the simpler it is to get them involved in the job as well as in achieving the team and organizational goals. This will also invite staffâ€™s commitment and loyalty. A cordial superior-subordinate relationship is a key factor in job-satisfaction.
Provide the employees certain benefits- Give your staff some financial and other benefits. Give them bonuses, pay them for overtime, and give them health and family insurance benefits. Make sure they get breaks from work. Let them enjoy vacations and holidays.
Participate in new employees induction programme- Induction proceeds with recruitment advertising. At this point of time, the potential entrants start creating their own impressions and desires about the job and the organization. The manner in which the selection is conducted and the consequent recruitment process will either build or damage the impression about the job and organization. Thus, the manager must have a say in framing the advertisement and also in the selection and recruitment process. After the decision about the candidate is made, the manager must take personal interest in the selected joineeâ€™s joining date, the family relocation issues, cost of removal, etc. Being observed by the new recruit and your entire team / staff to be involved completely, will ensure a persuasive entry in the organization.
Provide feedback to the staff constantly- The staff members are keen to know how they are performing. Try giving a regular and constructive feedback to your staff. This will be more acceptable by the staff. Do not base the feedback on assumptions, but on facts and personal observations. Do not indulge in favouritism or comparing the employee with some one else. Sit with your staff on daily or weekly basis and make sure that feedback happens. This will help in boosting employeeâ€™s morale and will thus motivate the staff.
Acknowledge your staff on their achievements- A pat on the back, some words of praise, and giving a note of credit to the employee / staff member at personal level with some form of broad publicity can motivate the staff a lot. Make it a point to mention the staffâ€™s outstanding achievements in official newsletters or organizationâ€™s journal. Not only acknowledge the employee with highest contribution, but also acknowledge the employee who meets and over exceeds the targets.
Ensure effective time management- Having control over time ensures that things are done in right manner. Motivate your staff to have â€œclosedâ€ times, i.e., few hours when there are no interruptions for the staff in performing their job role so that they can concentrate on the job, and â€œopenâ€ times when the staff freely communicate and interact. Plan one to one sessions of interaction with your staff where they can ask their queries and also can get your attention and, thereby, they will not feel neglected. This all will work in long run to motivate the staff.
Have stress management techniques in your organization- Create an environment in which you and your staff can work within optimum pressure levels. Ensure an optimistic attitude towards stress in the workplace. Have training sessions on stress management, and ensure a follow-up with group meetings on the manner stress can be lowered at work. Give your staff autonomy in work. Identify the stress symptoms in employees and try to deal with them.
Use counselling technique- The employeesâ€™ / staff feelings towards the work, their peer, their superiors and towards the future can be effectively dealt through the staff counseling. Counselling provides an environment, incentive and support which enable the employee to achieve his identity.
Give the employees learning opportunities- Employees should consistently learn new skills on the job. It has been well said by someone that with people hopping jobs more often than required and organizations no longer giving job security to employees, the young blood employees specifically realize that continuing learning is the best way to remain employable. Opportunities should be given to the employees to develop their skills and competencies and to make best use of their skills. Link the staff goals with the organizational goals.
Set an example for your staff / subordinates- Be a role model for your staff. The staff would learn from what you do and not from what you say / claim. The way you interact with your clients / customers and how do you react later after the interaction is over have an impact upon the staff. The staff more closely observes your non-verbal communication (gestures, body language). Being unpunctual, wasting the organizationâ€™s capital, mismanaging organizationâ€™s physical equipments, asking the staff to do your personal work, etc. all have a negative impact on the staff. Try setting an example for your staff to follow.
Smile often- Smiling can have a tremendous effect on boosting the morale of the staff. A smiling superior creates an optimistic and motivating work environment. Smiling is an essential component of the body language of confidence, acceptance and boldness. Smile consistently, naturally and often, to demonstrate that you feel good and positive about the staff who works for you. It encourages new ideas and feedback from the staff. The staff does not feel hesitant and threatened to discuss their views this way.
Listen effectively- Listening attentively is a form of recognizing and appreciating the person who is talking. Reciprocal / Mutual listening develops cordial and healthy personal relationships on which the employee / staff development rests. If the managers do not listen attentively to the subordinates, the morale of the subordinates lowers down and they do not feel like sharing their ideas or giving their views. Effective listening by the manager boosts up the employeesâ€™ morale and thus motivates them.
Ensure effective communication- In order to motivate your staff, indulge in effective communication such as avoid using anger expressions, utilize questioning techniques to know staffâ€™s mindset and analysis rather than ordering the staff what to do, base your judgements on facts and not on assumptions, use relaxed and steady tone of voice, listen effectively and be positive and helpful in your responses. Share your views with the staff.
Develop and encourage creativity- The staff should be encouraged to develop the creativity skills so as to solve organizational problems. Give them time and resources for developing creativity. Let them hold constant brainstorming sessions. Invite ideas and suggestions from the staff. They may turn out to be very productive.
Donâ€™t be rigid. Be flexible- Introduce flexibility in work. Allow for flexible working hours if possible. Let the employees work at home occasionally if need arises. Do not be rigid in accepting ideas from your staff. Stimulate flexible attitudes in the employees who are accountable to you by asking what changes they would like to bring about if given a chance.
Adopt job enrichment- Job enrichment implies giving room for a better quality of working life. It means facilitating people to achieve self-development, fame and success through a more challenging and interesting job which provides more promotional and advancement opportunities. Give employees more freedom in job, involve them in decision-making process, show them loyalty and celebrate their achievements.
Respect your team- Respect not only the employeesâ€™ rights to share and express their views, and to be themselves, but their time too. This will ensure that the employees respect you and your time. Make the staff feel that they are respected not just as employees / workers but as individuals too.
Workplace Motivation - Carrot or Stick approach doesnâ€™t work anymore
â€œI am in this job because I have no other option.â€ If this is what an employee of your company feels, read on to know how this statement can be changed to something more positive - â€œI love what I do.â€
First things first - whose responsibility is it to ensure that an employee loves his job? While an employee would say - the employer, the human resource experts have a different point of view which sounds fair. Itâ€™s both the employer and the employee who should work together to make work fun for each other.
It is interesting to know here, that employees do not rank â€™salaryâ€™ as the top factor in determining whether they like their jobs or not. What is important to them then - the opportunity to do what is â€™importantâ€™. Almost all the employees would like to feel part of the big picture and would want to contribute to the organizational goals in some way or the other. Doing the mundane, routine work will never excite them - what excites them is - work that challenges them to use their talent. Right Management Consultants conducted a survey sometime back and found
that 83% of about 500 workers surveyed were motivated by â€œchallenges at workâ€.
Also, as per an executive editor of the Harvard Business Review, while salary and promotions could do a great job of demotivating people if handled ineffectively, they arenâ€™t so much effective in motivating people.
So then what needs to be done for effective motivation at workplace?
Link Rewards directly to Performance- An organization should adopt a fair reward structure which provides incentive to the most deserving employee. Have an incentive structure in place doesnâ€™t solve the problem... what makes it workable is the employees trust in the system and believe that they will be rewarded if they perform well.
Compliment employees- Even though an employeeâ€™s name has not appeared in the list of people getting incentives, go ahead and compliment that employee for a job well done - no matter how small. There is nothing more satisfying to an employee than a pat on his back.
Be transparent- While there may be some strategic decisions which you might want to share with the employees at a later stage, make sure employees do not give in to the rumours. Stay in touch with the employees.
Work on your PDP- Every employee is responsible for his / her own career. He / she should work towards his â€™Personal Development Planâ€™ [PDP] as discussed and agreed by his manager. Find out what are the training company offers and which is best suited to his development needs. How this will motivate you - remember training always increase your marketability and enhance your career.
Participate and Network- Employees - Remember you work for a company where a one-on-one attention might not be possible. Do not wait for an invitation to participate in a discussion. If you are a part of a forum, then you have full right to express your opinion and be a part of the process. Expressing yourself is a good way of motivating yourself.
Self Motivation at Work
Self-motivation is a power that drives us to keep moving ahead. It encourages continuous learning and success, whatever be the scenario. Self-motivation is a primary means of realizing our goals and progressing. It is basically related to our inventiveness in setting dynamic goals for ourselves, and our faith that we possess the required skills and competencies for achieving those challenging goals. We often feel the need for self-motivation.
Following are the ways/techniques for self-motivation:
Communicate and talk to get motivated: Communicating with someone can boost up your energy and make you go on track. Talk with optimistic and motivated individuals. They can be your colleagues, friends, wife, or any one with whom you can share your ideas.
Remain optimistic: When facing hurdles; we always make efforts to find how to overcome them. Also, one should understand the good in bad.
Discover your interest area: If you lack interest in current task, you should not proceed and continue with it. If an individual has no interest in the task, but if it is essential to perform, he should correlate it with a bigger ultimate goal.
Self-acknowledgement: One should know when his motivation level is saturated and he feels like on top of the world. There will be a blueprint that once an individual acknowledge, he can proceed with his job and can grow.
Monitor and record your success: Maintain a success bar for the assignments you are currently working on. When you observe any progress, you will obviously want to foster it.
Uplift energy level: Energy is very essential for self-motivation. Do regular exercises. Have proper sleep. Have tea/coffee during breaks to refresh you.
Assist, support and motivate others: Discuss and share your views and ideas with your friends and peers and assist them in getting motivated. When we observe others performing good, it will keep us motivated too. Invite feedback from others on your achievements.
Encourage learning: Always encourage learning. Read and grasp the logic and jist of the reading. Learning makes an individual more confident in commencing new assignments.
Break your bigger goals into smaller goals: Set a short time deadline for each smaller goal so as to achieve bigger goal on time.
Team Motivation - Tips for Motivating Team
A group heading towards a common objective will perform best when it is motivated as a team. Team motivation is determined by how well the team membersâ€™ needs and requirements are met by the team.
Some tips for effective team motivation are as follows:
The teamâ€™s objective should well align and synchronize with the team members needs and requirements.
Give in written the teamâ€™s mission and ensure that all understand it (as mission is a foundation based on which the team performs).
For maintaining motivation, the team should be given challenges (which must be difficult but achievable) consistently.
Giving a team responsibility accompanied by authority can also be a good motivator for the team to perform.
The team should be provided with growth opportunities. The teamâ€™s motivation level is high when the team members feel that they are being promoted, their skills and competencies are being enhanced, and they are learning new things consistently.
Effective and true leaders can develop environment for the team to motivate itself. They provide spur for self- actualization behaviours of team members.
Devote quality/productive time to your team. Have an optimistic and good relation with your team members. This will make you more acquainted with them and you can get knowledge of how well they are performing their job. Welcome their views and ideas as they may be fruitful and it will also boost their morale.
Motivation is all about empowerment. The skills and competencies of the team members should be fully utilized. Empowering the team members makes them accountable for their own actions.
Provide feedback to the team consistently. Become their mentor. Give the team recognition for good and outstanding performance. Give the team a constructive and not negative feedback.
Discover and offset the factors which discourage team spirit such as too many conflicts, lethargy, team membersâ€™ escape from responsibilities, lack of job satisfaction, etc.