All organizations ultimate goal is to maximize its shareholders wealth and successful in progress in an environment which is highly competitive. Organizations are facing employee retention challenges since last two decades due to highly competitive regardless of organizations, technology and market focus. To overcome these constrain a strong and positive relationship should be created and maintained between employees and organizations. Human resource of any organization is the most central part, they need to be influenced and persuaded towards organizations achievements.

Most originations presently focus on how to have their employee’s motivated and how to get work done. There are basic needs to be satisfy for an individual, for an employee; to succeed in the workplace. Different motivation theories, include Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, Herzberg’s two-factor theory, and Aristotle’s seven causes. Each theory explain the fact that there are needs for all people to be meet. Every employee is at a different stage in their lives, which requires different motivation techniques.

The study focus on employee’s behavior towards organization, Motivation theories describe how organizations can influence their employees to motivate and finally focus on how organizations are able to implement different types of motivation techniques into their work place. This will show how motivation is important to all organization and how motivated employees contribute to create a successful organization.

Definition of Motivation

Motivation has too many different definitions, the definition of motivation starts with the root word, motive. Webster’s Dictionary defines motive as, something that causes a person to act. Therefore, motivation can be defined as, the act of providing motive that causes someone to act. In other words, according to Nancy Shanks, motivation causes someone to act and someone else cannot make someone motivated. It is the discretion of the person to decide if they are going to be motivated or not. Motivated and unmotivated are not opposites, but instead, there are determining factors that could cause someone to be unmotivated, such as life events and attitudes towards a specific job.

Motivation Theories

Motivation is the inner power or energy that pushes one toward performing a certain action. Motivation strengthens the ambition, increases initiative and gives direction, courage, energy and the persistence to follow one’s goals.

Motivation is usually strong, when one has a vision, a clear mental image of a certain situation or achievement, faith in one’s abilities and also a strong desire to materialize it. In this case motivation pushes one forward, toward taking action and making the vision a reality.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Every person starts at the bottom of the pyramid and works to achieve the goals of the next layer working to the top sector. One is not able to move on to the next level of the pyramid until the needs of the first level are met. Once they move to the next level, those needs must be met and if they are not, then it is possible to fall back down the pyramid. According to the article, “Motivation Theories”, the following is a definition of the different levels.

Exhibit 01: Maslow’s hierarchy of needs

The first level is the physiological needs. These are the basic needs that are to be met in order to survive, including food, water, clothing, sleep, and shelter. The next step is security, which means that the person’s surroundings are not threatening to them or their family. If the environment seems to be safe, then it means that there is a since of predictability or stability in the surroundings. Security could also include financial security so that there is no financial uncertainty in the future. This could be achieved by creating a retirement package, securing job position, and insurance. The third level is affiliation which is the need to feel a since of belonging or to be loved. In the workplace, this means to feel as though they are a part of the group and included in the work. People have the urge to be accepted by others, especially the people they are around the most. The fourth level is explained as esteem. This is the view that one has of themselves. In order to fully understand this level, the person must have a high image of them self and encompass self-respect. This level has two components: feelings of self-worth, and the need for respect from others. The last and final stage of the hierarchy of needs is self-actualization. This level is defined as someone being all they can be and they have met each of the previous stages. In this particular level, the person’s talents are being completely utilized.

Herzberg’s Two-Factor Theory

Herzberg’s work centered on the job or work itself and what can be done with it to enhance individual motivation. Basically Herzberg’s work looks at such issues surrounding restructuring a job to increase subordinate performance. His studies deal with factors which are job satisfiers and how they differ from factors which result in dissatisfaction. His work lead him to draw two main categories of factors:

  • Maintenance factors. The presence of Maintenance Factors does not result in strong motivation. Rather, it is the absence of these factors which leads to dissatisfaction. In other words, the factors are more potent as dissatisfies when they are absent than they are as motivators when they are present. Some of these factors include:
  • Policy and administration
  • Personal life
  • Technical supervision
  • Work condition
  • Salary
  • Status
  • Job Security
  • Inter-relationship with co workers
  • Motivational factors. Herzberg also identified a second set of factors that lead to high levels of motivation and job satisfaction when they are present, but which do not prove to be highly dissatisfying if they are absent. Herzberg named these factors Motivational Factors. The following factors are among those he identified as Motivational Factors:
  • Achievement
  • The work itself
  • Advancement
  • Possibility of personal growth
  • Recognition
  • Responsibility

Thus, Herzberg found that the opposite of job “satisfaction” is not “dissatisfaction” but “no satisfaction.”

Factor TypeAbsence of factorPresence of factor
Maintenance FactorsDissatisfactionNo dissatisfaction
Motivational FactorsNo satisfactionSatisfaction

Herzberg’s work has led to interest in job enrichment that attempts to restructure the job to increase the worker’s job satisfaction. Herzberg‘s theory implies that if leaders focus on Maintenance Factors, motivation will not occur. Motivation must be built into the job itself in order to improve motivation.

Techniques of Motivation

Job Enlargement

Job enlargement is an increase in job tasks and responsibilities to make a position more challenging. It is a horizontal expansion, which means that the tasks added are at the same level as those in the current position

Job Enrichment

Job enrichment is an attempt to give workers more control over their tasks and more responsibility for design, execution, and output. The worker assumes some of the functions previously carried out by his or her immediate supervisor or by other staff.

Job Rotation

Job rotation is a practice whereby each employee learns several operations in manufacturing process and rotates through each in a set period. Job rotation has important implications for firm learning. On one hand, when employees rotate, the firm receives information about the quality of various job-employee matches. On the other hand, without rotation, the firm receives only direct information about one match, but the information it gets about this one match is very reliable.


The importance of reward in the day-to-day performance of workers duties cannot be overemphasize, especially when it comes to being rewarded for a job done. It is a well-known fact that human performance of any sort is improved by increase in motivation. Going by the findings of this study, it can be easily inferred that workers reward package matters a lot and should be a concern of both the employer and employee. The results obtained from the hypotheses showed that workers place great value on the different rewards given to them by their employer. Hence, when these rewards are not given, workers tend to express their displeasure through poor performance and non-commitment to their job. It is therefore imperative for the organization to consider the needs and feelings of its work force and not just overlook them in order to safeguard industrial harmony, because “a happy worker they say is a productive worker”. Having stressed the importance of a good remuneration policy on the performance of workers and the different kinds of rewards that can influence workers to perform better on a job, this study can therefore be seen a call for employers sense of commitment to put in place appropriate incentive plan that will encourage workers to be more purposeful and improve their performance.


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“2009 Employee Job Satisfaction: Understanding the Factors That Make Work Gratifying.” Society for Human Resource Management (2009): 6-17. Web. 14 Feb. 2012.

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