Motivation can be defined as a condition that is initiated by a physiological or psychological deficiency or need of an individual, which causes the individual to behave in a certain manner in order to achieve a particular goal or incentive. Physiological/ psychological deficiency (NEED) Achieve a particular goal (INCENTIVE) Individual behaves in a certain manner (DRIVE) Motivation consists of three interacting and interdependent elements – needs, drives and incentives. The Motivation Process
A motive is termed as a primary motive when it satisfies both the criteria – it is not learned, and it is physiologically based. The most common primary motives are hunger, thirst, sleep, sex , avoidance of pain and maternal concern.
A motive is considered to be a general motive if it is not learned, but is also not based on physiological needs.
General motives stimulate tension within the individual.
The motives of curiosity, manipulation, motive to remain active and to display affection are examples of general motives.
1)The curiosity, manipulation and activity motives The motives of curiosity, manipulation and activity are very beneficial for a person, as they often result in innovations and better ways of doing things. 2) The affection motive- for e.g. love sometimes resembles primary motive and sometimes secondary motive.
David C. McClelland , a Harvard psychologist, has conducted extensive research on different aspects of achievement. According to him, the achievement motive is a person’s desire to perform excellently or to handle complex or competitive situations successfully .
The satisfiers were termed as motivators , while the dissatisfiers were termed hygiene factors.
While hygiene factors were responsible for preventing dissatisfaction , motivators were essential to keep the employees satisfied .
Contribution of Herzberg’s theory to work motivation
Herzberg considered hygiene factors to be very important for an organization to maintain its human resources; but these were not motivators .
Employees are motivated only if they have a challenging job which not only gives them an opportunity to achieve something, get recognition, advance in their careers and grow in the organization, but also allows them to handle greater responsibilities .
Alderfer’s ERG Theory Alderfer recognized the importance of categorizing needs and saw that there was a definite distinction between lower-level and higher-level needs. According to Alderfer, there are three basic groups of core needs:
Existence needs (E) – These are associated with the survival and physiological well-being of an individual.
The process theories of motivation deal with the cognitive antecedents that go into motivation or effort , and more specifically, with the way the cognitive antecedents of an individual relate to one another .
Rewards-personal goals relationship: This refers to the degree to which an individual’s personal goals or needs are satisfied by the rewards given by the organization and his perception of the attractiveness of these rewards.
The Porter-Lawler Model The model holds that performance in an organization is dependent on three factors :
An employee should have the desire to perform , i. e. he must feel motivated to accomplish the task .
Motivation alone cannot ensure successful performance of a task. The employee should also have the abilities and skills required to successfully perform the task.
The employee should have a clear perception of his role in the organization and an accurate knowledge of the job requirements . This will enable him to focus his efforts on accomplishing the assigned tasks.
THE CONTEMPORARY THEORIES OF WORK MOTIVATION Equity Theory
The degree of equity or inequity perceived by an employee with reference to his work situation plays a major role in work performance and satisfaction.
An employee compares the outcome: what he gets from his job in relation to what he gives to the job , i.e. job inputs.
Equity is represented schematically as: = Person’s outcomes Person’s inputs Other’s outcomes Other’s inputs Inequity is represented as followed: Person’s outcomes Person’s inputs < Other’s outcomes Other’s inputs Other’s outcomes Other’s inputs Person’s inputs Person’s outcomes > or
Other-inside : The employee compares his experience in the present position with the experience of another individual or group of individuals holding a different position but belonging to the same organization.
Other-outside: The employee compares his experiences in the present position with that of another individual or group of individuals holding a different position and belonging to a different organization .
There are four variables that influence an employee’s choice of referent . These are the gender of the employee, length of tenure of the employee in the organization, level at which the employee is working in the organization , and level of education or professional qualifications of the employee.
If an employee perceives an inequity, he will make certain choices .
The theory states that since the causes and reasons for an individual’s behavior cannot be directly observed , one has to depend to a great extent on the perception of the individual in order to understand his behavior .
Attribution theory also assumes that humans are rational and motivated beings.
Those employees who believe that there is an external control for all outcomes feel that they are in no position to control them . In their opinion, external factors like luck, chance, etc. are responsible for influencing outcomes .
Kelley suggested other dimensions such as consensus, consistency and distinctiveness having an impact on the type of attributions made by individuals .
Consensus denotes the extent to which others behave in a similar manner in the same situation .
Consistency refers to a pattern of behavior, which may be relatively stable or unstable . This shows whether a person behaves similarly in a similar situation or if a particular behavior is just an infrequent occurrence.
Task scope refers to a dimension for describing jobs at various levels of the organization. This task scope encompasses the variety of activities a person has to perform to complete as particular job .
Employees are not only given adequate opportunities to develop their skills, but are also empowered to plan, schedule and execute activities themselves . The employees are thus made completely accountable for their performance.
The employees should be given feedback on the positive aspects of their performance to encourage them to raise their level of productivity. This feedback should be free from the biases held by the managers.
The management must encourage the formation of informal, self motivated teams within the existing structures of the organization. This facilitates interaction among the various groups of employees , irrespective of the type of work they are involved in. The formation of such teams enhances skill variety, builds emotional relationships among employees and facilitates free interaction among them .