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Workplace Motivation

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Workplace Motivation

Amy Garvin

PSY320 - Human Motivation

December 01, 2006

Workplace Motivation

For every task an individual must have adequate motivation to undergo the toil required to see it through to completion. In some instances the task can be enjoyable. In other cases, there must be sufficient reward at the conclusion of the task to endure the work. However, in all cases, motivational strategies can be of significant value. Through this brief essay will be described two specific motivational strategies of an example company and how they affect productivity in the workplace. Further, an explanation will be given toward organizational efforts to improve performance and philosophy of motivation.

WordNet defines motivation as, "The psychological feature that arouses an organism to action toward a desired goal; the reason for the action; that which gives purpose and direction to behavior." Drive is the major motivational theory covered in the scenarios. This need to have a home, children, and tangible items for the family drives people to work. Compensation is a large factor which motivates people to work harder, be more productive, and obey company rules. When a person's paycheck or bank account is involved they are more likely to be interested.

The first motivational strategy of the company is called the "Star Award." Each month an award ceremony takes place to honor those of the organization who have shown a concern with doing their jobs above the average. In order for a person to be eligible for the award, they must first be nominated by a supervisor to receive it. Nominations are given on the basis of significant contributions which clearly show extraordinary effort and work beyond all expectations. Anyone who is nominated is assured the reward, but only twenty employees per month can receive the honor.

First, the employee is notified upon receiving a token which he or she may place on their desk with pride. There are different levels of the award, represented by the token style, shown by the color of the metal. As would be expected, the types are bronze, silver, and finally gold which also is known as the "shining star." Quarterly meetings include a ceremony to celebrate the star award employee contributions to the company. In addition, each employee receives a bonus on their check at that time commensurate with the level of token they earned.

Bronze tokens earn $200, silver tokens earn $500, and the coveted shining star of gold gets $1000. The gold star is exceptionally rare because to earn it requires an effort which impacts the company at a core level, either changing or adopting new policy or by providing significant profit. Finally, the individual has their picture taken and placed in a frame with accompanying brief praise over what earned their token which is then placed on the Star Award bulletin board. This serves to encourage those who have earned the reward to continue their excellence and inspire others to do more than simply what they must do.

The second motivational strategy is yearly evaluations for every employee of the company. Where the Star Awards was for exceptional work, this strategy covers a broader spectrum of work related factors.

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