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Employee Work Motivation Essay

1899 words - 8 pages

Motivated employees are important to an organization, because work motivation relates to the performance of employees and their behaviour towards the organization (Katzell & Thompson, 1990). “Managers see motivation as an integral part of the performance equation at all levels, while researchers see it as a fundamental building block in the development of useful theories of effective management practice (Steers, Mowday, & Shapiro, 2004, p. 379)”. In this study the role of work motivation of prospective employees played a central role, because in this study it was investigated if motivation to work for an organization was influenced by the ethical and philanthropic responsibilities.
The term motivation is derived from the Latin word movere, which means movement. BRON According to Steers et al. (2004) motivation is concerned with factors that stimulate and sustain human behaviour over time. Steers et al. (2004) stated that the earliest approaches about motivation date from the time of Greek Philosophers. So, as motivation exists over decades, several definitions arose. In the present study, two of these definitions are discussed.
An extensive definition is from Katzell and Thompson (1990) who define work motivation as a construct with regard to certain conditions and processes of the organizations that can be held accountable for the excitement, direction, and effort in a person’s job. Katzell and Thomspon (1990) make a distinction between endogenous motivation category and exogenous motivation category. Hereby the endogenous category is relating to, or developed by an internal cause or origin, for example “expectancies and attitudes of employees (Katzell & Thompson, 1990, p.145)”. And the exogenous category is relating to, or developed by external factors. Some examples of the external factors are “organizational incentives and rewards and social factors such as leader and group behaviour (Katzell & Thompson, 1990, p. 145)”. Therefore, for this study, the exogenous category is important, because these can be influenced by the organization. The exogenous category consists of various theories, namely; motivate/need theory, incentive/reward theory, reinforcement theory, goal theory, personal and material resource theory, group and norm theory and last the sociotechnical system theory (Katzell & Thompson, 1990).
Latham and Pinder (2005, p. 486) stated that to them work motivation “is a psychological process resulting from the interaction between the individual and the environment”. To make the definitions of work motivation manageable and incorporative for organizations, numerous theories arose. For example, Latham and Pinder (2005) regard that all work motivation theories are connected with needs (why a person must respond), traits (for example, extraversion, conscientiousness and self-evaluation), values (“are aspects that serve as guiding principles in the life (Prince-Gibson & Schwartz, 1998, as cited in Latham & Pinder, 2005, p. 491)”,...

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