Discuss about the Individual and Organizational Perspectives.
Motivation has different applications in SHRM. Before describing it as solution, it is necessary to understand its conceptualization. The English dictionary defines motivation as people’s desire or willingness to perform a task (Oxford Dictionaries, 2017). It goes further to highlight that something motivational is what encourages people to achieve a set goal. This means that hunger motivates human beings to search for food and the government uses tax incentives to motivate investors for business venture. Motivation is more than an emotion because it has an objective or a goal. Psychologists search for deeper meaning and implications of motivation (Huitt, 2011). Professional theorists refer to motivation according to different application. It has different advantages including behavior change, perception influence and cognitive development. The conceptualization of motivation is useful in studies featuring children, adults, employees, and learners among others. Some view it as an inborn attribute (Wacjman, 2013) while others believe in the external influences from social life (Siemens, 2014). For a complete study of motivation in organizational management, scholars unearth objectivity in its ability to influence action or desired behavior. This discussion highlights Maslow’s Theory for intrinsic factors and Hertzberg‘s approach to explain dissatisfaction. Also included is McClelland’s approach of Acquired Needs, which explains the social factor. The discourse adds Alderfer’s ERG theory for physical and social needs. The discussion gives a comparative analysis of the four theories.
The reason behind employee engagement is the performance factor (Gruman & Saks, 2011). Changes in the global environment place emphasis on high scores in job performance. This is partly because of the competent environment, which forces organizations to push their employees towards performance. In an organization, people succeed or fail depending on their inner drive. Both individual employees and their respective teams need motivation. Organizational behavior looks at what makes people to behave in a certain manner. Modern organizations use data based solutions to solve existing problems. The scientific approach to management provides multidimensional approaches in devising solutions. That is why HR practices acknowledge that Psychology is an important part of organizations. It describes the nature of human behavior using proven ideas and approaches. The quest to achieve performance targets people as individual contributor to quality management. SHRM becomes the formula for shaping personnel behavior, competencies and talents (Schuler, et al., 2013). The engagement of employees explores factors that enhance positive responses and outcomes. Since the broad spectrum involves numerous attributes, it is best to breakdown the analysis into simpler elements. Motivation as one of the drivers of success comes with different approaches propagated by different theorists.
Maslow’s Theory of Needs
Abraham Maslow’s theory propagates that people have different levels of motivation, which create a desire for better working conditions, social and psychological needs (Bratton & Gold, 2012). The theory supports the role of job security in motivating employees to stay in the job. Job retention is one of the challenges in HR practices because the best employees are hard to retain. A person’s state of mind determines their potential for success because of the inbuilt self-motivational ability. Job satisfaction encourages workers to remain in the organization.
HRM relates with the recruitment process, performance management, organizational development and employee wellness. Motivation in Maslow’s view comes from the needs that the job meets (Rencher, 2016). These are basic needs through an income, financial security, workmate relation and respect. That is why motivation shapes strategic policies to ensure self-actualization of individuals. The reward system motivates employees to search for jobs in organizations, which pay well. Companies that have the best skilled have better pay and tactics to retain their workers. Among these is talent development, which attracts professionals searching for growth and development opportunities. Maslow’s theory supports job security and a work environment that is has good interpersonal relationships. People have social and psychological needs. The monetary allowances and promotions satisfy their ego and emotional contentment. Self-actualization is the higher need, which serves as a boost to self-esteem (Vance, et al., 2012).
Employees get dissatisfaction from the work environment. This includes lack of safety, compensation and working conditions. Fredrick Hertzberg discusses the two-factor theory that points towards job satisfaction and job dissatisfaction. In support of Maslow’s approach, this approach agrees that motivation comes shapes certain attitudes and comes from needs. However, it adds that discontent comes from lack of these satisfaction influencers. When employees leave after training in an organization, the reason could be the desire for better terms of employment, a salary increase or work safety. Therefore, the suggestion is that organizations need strategies for jobs satisfaction as well as those that hinder dissatisfied employees (Hertberg, et al., 2011).
Hertzberg motivation advises managers to create a working that motivates employees such as working conditions and opportunities for growth. Enlisting hygiene factors as those supporting the work environment, he compares them with motivation factors (Latham, 2012). Figure 2 below summarizes this. For example, the quality of supervision encourages workers to pursue promotions and better opportunities. This means low-level workers has the courage to request for a job upgrade. Company policies also encourage or discourage workers from aiming high. Sometimes professionals prefer working in the government sector because of the job security. People who prefer to start their own businesses do so for achievement and better income.
McClelland’s Theory of Needs
David McClelland focused on three needs namely power, achievement and affiliation as the motivating factors. In the approach, people seek high achieving opportunities in organizations based on these. These are reasons for the individuals to avoid situations of risk that could compromise their potential (Oyedele, 2013). The need for higher power motivates some people to strategize towards seeking posts in organizations. In such a case, a student graduating takes a managerial course with a focus on becoming a manager in the specific organization. He points out two types of power, the individual and the institutional power. McClelland reiterates that it is better for an individual to pursue social power because it has more benefits and the individual stands a better chance of succeeding (Dubois, et al., 2015).
On affiliation, the Acquired Needs theory states that people have a deeper need to feel appreciated in society. As a result, employees conform to the organizational expectations in order to fit in. this explains why social personalities thrive in customer care than introverts. Some leadership roles in an organization favor team leaders who have outgoing personalities. Competent global organizations have multiple tests including interpersonal and intercultural tests that indicate employee’s abilities to affiliate with others. The manger takes advantage of this notion to place employees in the right working environment as a way to stimulate their potential (Hosie, et al., 2013).
The third need is achievement and employees seek ways to excel hence they avoid situations that hinder their goal. By avoiding high-risk situations, employees stand a higher chance of excelling. Sometimes employees affiliate with the organization’s leaders in as a motivation towards achieving their target. Managers can use this approach to team members in high potential positions. The theory explains why managers set goals and targets for groups and individuals.
Alderfer’s ERG theory
Paul Alderfer’s theory denotes the Existence, Relatedness, and Growth (ERG) theory. In this approach, the people have physical and social needs that stirs them to pursue and develop the needs through development and psychological improvement (Konrad, et al., 2013). According to the theory these needs vary in category because some people would rather be productive than work for sustainability. It explains why some people search for part time work in order to satisfy physical needs like hunger or to earn a living. Managers can adopt this method when faced with multiple needs. For example, before a manager introduces training in order to prepare managers for example growth. The theory summarizes Maslow’s theory of self-actualization. Based on an employees’ self-actualization the organization plans teams according to the initiatives shown by each employee. That is, people seek needs that enhance their existence and pursue relatedness needs for safety, social needs and self-esteem. This leads to growth, which is the self-actualization (valuebasedmanagement.net, 2016). ERGS Existence needs corresponds to Maslows basic needs as people find jobs to satisfy their basic needs. The Relatedness Needs relate to Maslow’s social needs in the fourth stage (Lazaroiu, 2015). Consequently, ERG growth needs correspond with Maslows social and social and self-actualization needs.
Existence ( E)
Survival needs (food, shelter, )
Relatedness ( R)
Interpersonal and social needs
Growth ( G)
Desire of personal development and growth
Comparative Analysis of the theories
Before a manger can motivate an individual with a salary raise, it is critical to recognize the gap in the underlying needs such as material or existential. (Schwartz, et al., 2012) Taking interest in a person is crucial because it helps employers to understand each individual personally. It raises questions about their ambition, personal status and plan. The process of executing and monitoring the process calls for a feedback method to analyze the impact of the motivation. Hertzberg’s theory of motivation encourages the creation of best-case scenarios. It shows the expected outcome for dissatisfied employees whether motivated or not. When the hygiene factors miss out, employees often complain and show dissatisfaction. This should be the time for managers to take action. If the complaint is about the work environment, the management might use Maslows or ERG theory to satisfy this need. Sometimes employees want to grow with the company.
The integration of motivational theories provides a system for weighing the aspirations of the individual in line with the organization (Daley, 2012). Sometimes the working environment is the hygiene factor. Employees will come to work late and show less enthusiasm because of dissatisfaction. In this case, the leader needs to discern whether the employee’s needs are intrinsic or social factors to encourage job satisfaction. It could be that the interrelationship is not good. The social need is a dissatisfaction element. Although the ERG is a replica of Maslow’s theory, it supports the co-existence of more than one need. Frustration in Hertzberg is also effective in prescribing the solution for McClelland’s theory on job satisfaction as an achievement need (Latham, 2012, p. 30). Employer can detect the reason for lack of drive in the need for achievement or lack of social connections. The diagram below shows the process of motivating employees as individuals.
Intrinsic verses extrinsic factors of motivation
As an individual factor, motivation is inborn and externally influenced. Theorists like Abraham Maslow who use inner desire to explain the motivational aspect support hereditary attitudes. The tendency for some people to become natural leaders adopts such an approach (Daley, 2012, p. 121). It supports individual quest for success out of an inborn need to excel. This explains why companies have aptitude and IQ tests to identify the intellectual capacity that is beyond normal. Such tests may also help managers to classify employee in teams that excel in performance. From Herzberg’s point of reference, employees who are discontent may need the social support of highly motivated workers. The introduction or removal of the hygiene factors in Hertzberg’s theory helps managers to research on the ideal working structures or compositions. Existence, relatedness and growth identify needs without having to prioritize them. This is ideal in making quick decisions in a team or project task.
Society, professional background, and success stories shape a person’s drive from the environment. That is why managers develop strategies, which improve motivation in the firm. Among the tactics is the introduction of reinforcements such as rewards to change a dissatisfied attitude. These stimulate employees to performance. By offering training, employers understand that individuals have ideas to excel but they require a push towards the right direction. (Deci & Ryan, 2012) Self-motivated individuals know the right direction to take for success. Alder agrees that some people want recognition because of their social affiliations. Different job designs have suitable roles for different personalities. Many employees fail to achieve their maximum potential because organizations fail to provide opportunities for growth professional, social and personal growth. Sometimes internal motivation needs external motivation to succeed. The high competition in the business world gives businesspersons or industry leader’s reasons to dedicate their time and energy towards innovation.
Importance of Motivation
Motivation has numerous benefits these are significant to the organization as well as the individual (Hughes, 2012, p. 228). In summary, motivation has the following benefits:
- It lowers the costs of hiring new employees because the employer is able to identify the existing gaps in an organization.
- In most cases, motivation leads to job satisfaction because it compliments individual’s competencies. A happy worker is effective because of his abilities does not need coercion.
- It improves customer satisfaction especially in the service sector where employees are important influencers. Employees who have a good salary are happy to serve
- An improved working environment stimulates performance. Employees who experience their self-actualization needs have no insecurities and they feel safe and appreciated.
- Motivation supports organizational strategies and employees feel part of the team regardless of their gender(Dezsco & Ross, 2012). This is part of the Strategic Human Resource Management tactics, which give an organization a competitive edge.
- Employees focus on their tasks having in mind their motivational factors. This allows them to channel their enthusiasms towards fulfilling rewarding tasks.
Behavioral psychologists use motivation to identify problems in people’ behavior. As part of management practices, companies hire HR specialist who have these skills in order to give a human face to the organization. Managing dissatisfied people is about improving their potential. Motivation sets the pace for talent development in the organization (Dubois, et al., 2015)
Discontentment, dissatisfaction, lack of enthusiasm and demotivation describe negative attitudes that people display when working conditions are not favorable. Employees working in an organization also face emotional highs and lows. These arise from intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Motivation is a widely studied element of employees in an organization. Associated with performance, it determines the success of people and organizations. Theorists acknowledge the existence of inner drives that encourage people to undertake certain tasks. Contrary to most belief that people search for jobs because of financial gain, some people find satisfaction working for security, social interaction and respect. Theorists discuss these notions giving suggestions of the right kind of environment that stimulates growth. For example, Maslow points out that out of the determination to gain social and psychological needs, managers may find training opportunities for better competencies. In agreement, Hertzberg confirms that besides job satisfaction, there are also factors that cause dissatisfaction. These could be poor pay or unfriendly colleagues. McClelland confirms Maslow’s ideas that people look for greener pastures based on the need for power, achievement and affiliations. On the other hand, Adler notes that an employee could be seeking a new job for power and social needs. This intersection of theories adds value to the decision making process. From the discussion, motivation has inexhaustible importance.
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