Worker Motivation In Capitalist Economies Essay

677 words - 3 pages

In this essay, I will be discussing whether or not there is a problem with worker motivation in capitalist economies. However, before I relay my answer, I must define both motivation and capitalism within the context of this essay. In the book, Motivation and Work Behavior, the authors share their thoughts on motivation. They conclude, “When we discuss motivation, we are primarily concerned with (1) what energizes human behavior, (2) what directs or channels such behavior, and (3) how this behavior is maintained or sustained” (Porter et al. 2003, p. 1). Put more simply, motivation is what encourages human beings to focus and stay on task in any certain situation, in my opinion. In the context of the workplace, one considers motivation to of the utmost importance, since in most cases, time equals money in terms of production. Therefore, there are certain factors that are necessary in order to maintain the motivation of the workers. Some factors might include decent salaries, benefits, or even a thriving corporate culture. Many theorists attempt to explain motivation in relation to a person’s basic needs in life. The best-known example of this would be Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. “Maslow distinguishes between two basic categories of needs: deficiency needs and growth needs” (Porter et al. 2003, p. 6). The deficiency needs include psychological needs, safety and security, and belongingness, while the growth needs include esteem and ego and self-actualisation. Once you start to satisfy the psychological needs, you move up to fulfilling the safety and security needs, and so on, until you reach self-actualisation.
By definition from the Oxford English Dictionary, capitalism is “an economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state” (Oxford 2014). In a capitalist economy, employees are paid wages that are taken from revenues as expenses. In most cases, employees are paid different wages based on experience, education, and even performance. When all...

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