Motivating Employees

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  • Created by: amy
  • Created on: 29-05-13 19:17

Key Terms

  • MOTIVATION- the factors that influence people to behave in particular ways.
  • SCIENTIFIC MANAGEMENT- an approach to management that places great emphasis upon the use of quantifiable data in order to improve the efficiency of the business. 
  • PIECEWORK/PIECE RATE- payment based upon the number of items that a worker produces within a given time.
  • PERFORMANCE RELATED PAY- a system of rewarding employees e.g. a bonus that is linked to the attainment of some agreed targets.
  • PROFIT SHARING- a financial incentive in which employees share a percentage of the firm's profits as a bonus in addition to their wages or salaries.
  • SHARE OWNERSHIP- employees are offered the opportunity to buy shares in the company at a discounted rate. 
  • SHARE OPTIONS- senior management are given the chance to buy a fixed number of shares in the company at some point in the future, at the current market price. 
  • FRINGE BENEFITS- benefits made to employees in addition to their wages or salaries. e.g. a dental health plan.
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Key terms 2

  • JOB ENRICHMENT- a means of giving employees greater levels of responsibility and offering them challenges that allow them to fully utilise their skills. 
  • JOB ENLARGEMENT- increasing the scope of the job, either by job enrichment or job rotation.
  • JOB ROTATION- providing the employee with the skills to switch jobs to provide greater variety of work but with no added responsibilities. 
  • EMPOWERMENT- giving employees the means by which they can exercise power over their working lives. 
  • TEAMWORKING- a system where production is organised into large units of work and a group of employees work together in order to meet shared aims. 
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Scientific Management and F.W. Taylor

  • taylor believed that extreme division of labour, payment by piecework and tight management control were the main methodss of improving productivity and efficiency. 
  • However, this influence on the workforce was less successful because extreme division of labour meant that jobs became more boring and repetitive.
  • The lack of skills needed by workers led to a loss of power for individual workers.
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Elton Mayo

Mayo's findings suggested that:

  • recognition, belonging and security are important motivators.
  • work is a group-based activity
  • managers need to pay attention to individuals' social needs and the influence of their informal groups.
  • managers must communicate with informal groups and involve them in decision making to ensure their goals are in tune with the organisation's goals.
  • Improved communication can lead to increased output!
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Maslow's hierachy of needs

  • Maslow's hierachy of needs suggests that people have similar types of need, which can be classified into a hierachy.
  • He believed that an unsatisfied need was a motivator of behaviour and that, while it remained unsatisfied, high-level needs were unimportant. 
  • However, once people satisfy their physiological and safety needs, it is questionable whether, for all individuals, social needs come before esteem needs. 
  • Many individuals are high acheivers and are motivated by this, sometimes to the exclusion of any desire to be a part of a team or to get along with their colleagues. 
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Maslow's hierachy of needs

Self Actualisation

Esteem Needs

Social Needs

Safety Needs

Physiological Needs

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herzberg's motivation and maintenance

"the more a person can do, the more you can motivate them."

Herzberg's Two Factor Theory

Factors that surround the job and whilst they do not directly motivate staff they can minimise levels of dissatisfaction. 



-working conditions

-job security

-quality of supervision 

-relations with others

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herzberg's motivation and maintenance

Factors that directly concern the job itself and are likely to motivate staff and increase levels of productivity if met.


-promotional opportunities



-opportunities for personal growth

-interesting and meaningful work 

Herzberg believes that both hygiene factors and the motivators are of equal importance in a business. Both have to be satisfied for motivation to occur. 

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financial motivational techniques


-salaries paid monthly on an annual rate

-wages paid weekly on an hourly rate


Negative= argument concerning quantity vs. product quality, Strongly opposed by Herzberg

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financial motivational techniques


benefit= incentivises staff to work harder to meet targets

problem= hard to measure and a cause of conflict between staff 


-company sucess is shared by all- reduces divisions.

problem= amounts often small and ignores individual efforts!

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financial motivational techniques

SHARE OPTIONS (Senior Management)

benefit= incentive to acheive targets and boost share price

problem= encourages short-termism and greed.


benefit= encourages staff loyalty and reduces labour turnover 

-it can create divisions amongst staff and senior managers


benefit= encourages greater volume of sales from staff

problem= can harm customer service quality

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Non-financial motivational techniques

Job Enrichment

the key characteristics include:

  • introducing new challenging units of work for employees
  • providing employees with responsibility for complete units of work 
  • providing regular and meaningful feedback
  • increasing employee accountability 


  • develops employee skills
  • promotional chances
  • motivates staff by greater involvement


  • puts additional pressures on staff
  • training costs and long-term before benefits
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Job Enlargement

Job englargement can take place through either job enrichment or job rotation.

Benefit= The technique offers the chance of greater recognition for employees and improved chances for promotion.

Negative = However, there is always danger of demoralising employees by giving them excessive workloads.

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empowering employees

Empowering employees gives them much greater control over their own working lives. This allows them to plan their own units of work and to make decisions without the need to constantly refer to a manager.

Potential benefits include:

  • increased productivity
  • reduced labour turnover
  • lower absenteeism rates

The problems with this include:

  • high costs of training staff
  • difficult to monitor staff performance
  • delegation needs to be realistic to avoid employees attempting tasks for which they lack the skills and experience.
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