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Motivational Paper

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This paper discusses what motivation is and how it can be utilized to optimize performance in a work setting, the different motivational theories will be discussed as well as their affect on employee's behavior. It intends to outline a fictitious organizations proposed incentive and motivation plans for their employees.

Keywords: motivation theory, organizational development, incentive plans, motivation

Motivational Paper:

Motivation Theories

Motivation is a crucial yet invisible force that all managers and organizations seek to conquer, however one must first understand what it is that goes into motivating employees, and how to optimize the company's motivation factors. If a company puts zero emphasis or effort into motivating their employees they will end up having a staff that works far below their potential. Furthermore, if employees in a company have no motivation to do their job well their work can end up sloppy and produce results that are substandard. Some motivational forces are beyond anyone's control, which mostly consist of personal factors that influence an employee's actions at work. But there are a set of motivational factors that can and should be influenced at the workplace. I will be focusing on Zenza Corp and the employee motivation issues within the company, their main departments fall under three categories, sales, administration and production. The motivational theories that should be applied to these departments will be outlined in order to enable Zenza Corp to better motivate their employees and get the results that they need as an organization.

As the book Management Theory discusses there are many factors that go into motivation, but they fall into two separate and distinct categories internal (push) and external (pull) factors (Hitt, Black, & Porter, 2012, p. 241). Managers must not only acknowledge these two factors, but they must learn how to optimize employee's potential by utilizing these forces. Many times when an employee is underperforming the root cause has to do with inadequate pull forces, this happens when the incentives and rewards of a job are low and an employee doesn't have a lot of motivating factors to optimize their performance on the job. This issue can be addressed by creating incentives in order for employees to feel appreciated, secure and invested


in their company. One must not forget the importance of push factors though, because both internal and external forces are equally as important, and sometimes an employee's environment on the job affects their internal forces, so it is imperative that management take into consideration both sets of forces that can negatively or positively affect their employees' performance. There currently are two types of motivational theories which include: content theories which address what needs a person is trying to satisfy and what features of the work environment seem to satisfy those needs, and the other type of theory is call the process theory which deals with the way different variables combine to influence the amount of effort an employee puts in, both of which will be discussed when outlining the needs of Zenza Corp as it pertains to motivating the sales, administrative and production staff (Hitt, Black, & Porter, 2012, p. 242).

The staff at Zenza Corp has been falling behind in their competitive edge, so management has begun to research and design a plan to optimize their three main departments. Maslow's Hierarchy of needs as well as ERG (Existence-Relatedness-Growth) theory were explored for all three of these departments, and it was concluded that although they are useful tools in discussing motivation, they weren't specific enough to use as a model to improve performance, so three very specific and distinct motivation theories will be focused on.

The sales staff became top priority in this new initiative and the Equity Theory has been chosen as the best fit for the sales department. The equity theory was developed by Stacy Adams in the 1960's and falls into the category of being a process theory. It very simply proposes that individuals will compare their situation to others and these comparisons may motivate certain behaviors (Hitt, Black, & Porter, 2012, p. 248). The thinking is that if the company designs an incentive plan for the sales department, and the sales staff see's that the top performers are being


rewarded for their efforts they will compare their compensation and rewards to that of the top salespeople and attempt to achieve a higher level of sales in order to be compensated at a higher level. An article Work Motivation Theory and Research at the



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