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Motivation

Motivation

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Published by: kkv_phani_varma5396 on Jun 09, 2010
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01/20/2011

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MOTIVATIONPeople’s work performance depends upon their ability to do their assigned work as well as their “will” to do so. Stronger “will” reflects stronger motivation to achieve a goal. The wordmotivation is derived from motive, which is need or a desire requiringmovement towards the goal of achievement of such need or a desire. It isan action, movement or behavior that must fulfill the unsatisfied need.The motivation can be positive that requiresappreciating employee’s efforts resulting in better performance or it could be negative that induces fear and punishment for less effort. Motivationcan also be induced by external factors such as financial means thataccomplishing something worthwhile motivates the employee further andthis motivates the employee further and this motivation is independent of financial rewards.Historically speaking, the concept of motivation can be traced back twenty-three centuries as reflected in the Greek and Indianwritings. These earlier philosophies proposed that we are motivated to dowhat brings us the best results for our benefit. Similarly, the Greek concept of Hedonism is based upon realizing maximum pleasure while atthe same time evading pain and discomfort. This brings in the concept of rationality where our actions become utility oriented. These views wereheld over a long period of time so that the concept motivation came under scientific study and investigation only in the early 1930s. This theory ledto a number of theories and models.
 
The content theories of work motivation explainthe nature of motivation in terms of types of need that people experience.The concept of motivation is explained by the fact that people havecertain fundamental needs, both physiological and psychological innature and that are motivated to engage in activities that would satisfythese needs.Abraham Maslow built the needs into a hierarchy inorder of priority. The most fundamental needs are the physiological needsuch as food, clothing, and shelter and so on. Then in order came theneeds for safety and security, as love and affection, need for respect andself-esteem and finally the self-actualization need that is considered to bethe ultimate fulfillment of life. Management can motivate workers byidentifying their need level and taking steps to fulfill these needs.ERG theory, developed by Clayton Alerter, condensesthe five needs proposed by Maslow into three and ERG stands foExistence, Relatedness needs roughly correspond to social and self esteem needs and finally, the growth needs are similar to self-actualization needs.McCielland’s theory of needs is based upon the premise that lower levelneeds in Maslow’s model are generally taken care of by business, societaland legal system and hence are no longer motivators. According to thistheory, the most prominent need from organizational behavior point of view is the need for achievement, power and affiliation. The individualswith a high degree of need for achievement, power and affiliation arehighly motivated to move towards fulfilling these needs at the higher levels.
 
Hertzberg’s two-factor theory classifies all the work related factors intotwo categories. First category contains factors that are known as hygienefactors. The factors prevent dissatisfaction but do not motive. Some of these factors are wages and benefits, working conditions, organizationalrules and policies, cordial relations with peers and supervisors, jobsecurity and so on. These factors are designed to avoid damage toefficiency or morale and are not expected to stimulate positive growth.Motivational factors on the other hand have a positive influence onmorale, satisfaction, efficiency and higher productivity. These are thetype of jobs one enjoys, recognition for employee input and performance,a feeling of accomplishment, increased responsibility and authority andgrowth and achievement with the organization.

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