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Session 2. Motivation

Session guide: Motivation
Reading note: Motivation



FORMAT Plenary participatory lecture



At the end of this session, participants should be able to understand and appreciate:

1. The concept and importance of motivation
2. Various theories of motivation
3. Motivation techniques and their organizational application


Exhibit 1


Exhibit 2

Theories of motivation

Exhibit 3

The goal setting process

Exhibit 4

Motivation techniques

Exhibit 5

Job enrichment techniques for motivation

Exhibit 6

Strategies for enriching jobs

Exhibit 7

Achievement power training for motivation

Exhibit 8.

Steps in positive reinforcement programmes

Exhibit 9

Ways of positive reinforcement

Exhibit 10

First Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 11

Second Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 12

Third Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 13

Fourth Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 14

Fifth Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 15

Sixth Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 16

Seventh Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 17

Eighth Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 18

Ninth Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 19

Tenth Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 20

Eleventh Dynamic Law of Motivation

Exhibit 21

Twelfth Dynamic Law of Motivation


Reading note: Motivation




Overhead projector and chalkboard

Session guide: Motivation

Ask participants what they understand by motivation and by de-motivation. What motivates them and what de-motivates? After a brief discussion, define motivation as an internal force which arouses, regulates and sustains a person's more important actions (EXHIBIT 1). Observe that people possess potential for development, have capacity for assuming responsibility, and are ready to direct their behaviour towards organizational goals provided a congenial environment is created. Thus it is very important for a manager to understand factors which influence motivation.

Next show EXHIBIT 2 and discuss content and process theories of motivation.

Content theories consider behaviour in the context of psychological, safety, social, esteem and self-actualization needs of an individual. Maslow's need theory considers behaviour in the context of the strongest needs prevailing at a particular time. The needs keep changing in importance as they are satisfied. Once a need is satisfied, the individual is concerned with the next level of need in the hierarchy. Alderfer has regrouped Maslow's five basic needs into three groups: existence, relatedness and growth (ERG theory). McClelland identified need for achievement, need for power and need for affiliation as important needs of an individual. The two-factor theory emphasizes the importance of hygiene and motivating factors in determining productivity. Hygiene factors are job contextual. They are satisfiers but not motivators. Their absence creates dissatisfaction. Motivating factors relate to job content, and their presence is satisfying and motivating.

Process theories identify the variables that go into motivation, and their interrelationship. Expectancy theory considers performance as determined by motivational levels, ability, traits and pride perceptions. Vroom has considered the level of performance as a multiplicative function of ability and motivation. Reinforcement theory is based on the premise that the sum of external environment - and not internal needs - determines individual behaviour. Desired responses can be elicited through appropriate use of positive or negative reinforcements. Goal-setting theory is based on the premise that performance is a result of a person's intention to perform, and that setting goals results in better performance (EXHIBIT 3).

Now shift the discussion towards the techniques of motivation which help in raising the level of personal motivation (EXHIBIT 4). These techniques include job enrichment; achievement-cum-power training; management by objectives; positive reinforcement programmes; and different laws of motivation.

The job enrichment technique uses a design approach. The nature of the job is changed to provide variety and create excitement. This results in better performance. Show EXHIBIT 5 and discuss the job characteristics model, which includes work outcome, critical psychological stage, core job dimensions, and growth need strength. Strategies for enriching jobs include combining tasks, forming natural work units, establishing client relationships, vertical loading, and opening feedback channels (EXHIBIT 6).

The achievement-cum-power training approach uses a training programme involving five steps. Show EXHIBIT 7 and discuss each of these steps.

In the management-by-objectives approach, common goals are identified and all efforts are oriented towards achieving them.

Show EXHIBIT 8 and discuss steps involved in a positive reinforcement programme. Using EXHIBIT 9, discuss six ways of positive reinforcement to motivate employees.

Finally, discuss the twelve dynamic laws of motivation, using EXHIBITS 10 to 21.

The first law (EXHIBIT 10) of motivation is that the leader should be proficient both technically and professionally. Managers who know their job well gain the respect, confidence, willing obedience, loyal cooperation and full support of employees. The managers are then able to encourage the team members to work just as hard as they themselves do.

The second law (EXHIBIT 11) is that managers should be honest with themselves if they want to improve. Honest and forthright self-evaluations can allow managers to recognize their strengths and weaknesses, and thus their limitations and shortcomings - both compared with other managers as well as with subordinate supervisory staff.

The third law (EXHIBIT 12) is that managers should know their staff and look out for their welfare. This helps to create more positive feeling towards the organization and the managers, and increases the work output of everyone.

The fourth law (EXHIBIT 13) is that managers should always keep their staff informed. This helps to encourage initiative and enthusiasm, and improves team work and morale. It helps to eliminate rumours and make subordinates more effective.

The fifth law (EXHIBIT 14) is to ensure that the task is understood, supervised and accomplished. By emphasizing results rather than methods, a manager can develop individual initiative and ingenuity in subordinates.

The sixth law (EXHIBIT 15) is that managers should train their staff as a team. This imbues them with a sense of being needed and wanted, and also develops a feeling of belonging to the team and the organization. Team spirit will (i) induce better spirit and morale, (ii) enthuse the team members to vigorously pursue common goals, and (iii) increase individual proficiency, leading to improved organizational efficiency.

The seventh law (EXHIBIT 16) is about sound and timely decision making, which develops confidence in subordinates and motivates them to do their best.

The eighth law (EXHIBIT 17) is to develop a sense of responsibility in subordinates and show faith in them. That encourages mutual confidence and respect between subordinates and their superiors. It also encourages initiative and cooperation towards team activities. In these conditions, managers can expect better performance from subordinates.

The ninth law (EXHIBIT 18) is that a manager should seek responsibility and be responsible for his actions. When managers seek responsibility, they take the initiative without direct orders, develop leadership abilities, and earn the respect and confidence of subordinates.

The tenth law (EXHIBIT 19) is that managers should always set examples as role models. It helps subordinates to use managers' actions to determine their own standards of conduct and efficiency.

The eleventh law (EXHIBIT 20) is to motivate every single member of the team to feel important to themselves. Managers can get maximum output from employees by making them feel that they are needed, wanted and that their work is appreciated.

Finally, the twelfth law (EXHIBIT 21) of motivation: 'Put the first eleven into action and make them work.' It is not sufficient to simply know the laws of motivation. Observe that these laws also describe qualities and functions of a leader, many of which were discussed in the previous session on leadership. It should be recognized that there are three elements which influence the process of motivation: the situation, the motivated and the motivator. Managers should understand each of their subordinates, as each individual differs from another. This understanding is necessary to develop a group into a team and achieve maximum output.


Motivation is "an internal force which arouses, regulates and sustains a person's more important actions. Its existence and nature is inferred from observation and experience of behaviour."

"Motivation is the need or drive within an individual that drives them towards goal-oriented action."

Source: Terry and Franklin, 1987.


Content theories

· Need theories
· Maslow's need theory
· ERG theory
· Need and achievement theory
· Two-factor theory:
- Hygiene factors
- Motivating factors

Process theories

· Expectancy theory
· Reinforcement theory
· Goal-setting theory



(A situation in the environment)


(Awareness of the incentives)


(Worth of the task)


(Intention to act)


Source: Locke, 1968.


Job enrichment

Achievement-cum-power training

Management by objectives

Positive reinforcement programmes


Job enrichment

· Work outcome

Internal work motivation
Quality of work performance
Job satisfaction
Absenteeism and turnover

· Critical psychological stage
· Core job dimensions

Skill variety
Task identification
Task significance

· Growth need strength


Combining tasks

Forming natural work units

Establishing client relationship

Vertical loading

Opening feedback channels

Source: Hackman et al., 1975.


Create confidence so that motives can be changed

Convince participants that developing the strength of the achievement motives is in consonance with their environmental needs

Teach how to act in a high achievement way

Record participants' achievement- or power-oriented behaviour

Each participant sets goals, formulates action plan, and develops a basis for self-appraisal

Based on: McClelland, 1962.


Identification of specific behaviour problems

Determination of the links between the antecedents, the behaviour and the consequences

Development and setting of specific behavioural goals for each person and the target behaviour

Recording the progress towards the goal

Application of appropriate consequences (namely rewards, punishment or extinction)

Source: Tosi, Rizzo and Carroll, 1986.


Do not reward all employees equally

Failure to reinforce also modifies behaviour, although in a negative direction

Inform employees what they can do to get reinforcement. This can be done by setting goals and monitoring performance to get timely feedback

Tell employees through appropriately timed communication when and what they are doing wrong. Through such communication and other needed help from the manager, an employee can improve her or his performance and that would act as a positive reinforcement. Lack of communication creates confusion and a feeling of manipulation

Do not reprove or punish a subordinate in the presence of others.

Be fair and impartial

Sources: Hamner and Hamner, 1976; Tosi, Rizzo and Carroll, 1986.


Develop yourself technically and professionally

1. Seek and gain a well-rounded education for your chosen profession.

2. Broaden your professional and technical knowledge.

3. Look for opportunities to use your knowledge in a practical manner and thus motivate others to do your wishes.

4. Keep abreast of current business and industrial developments and trends.

5. Associate with well qualified people.

6. Know and understand the capabilities and the limitations of your own organization.

7. Take advantage of every opportunity to prepare yourself for a higher position in your organization.

8. Understand fully and apply properly the principles of sound management of human resources, time, physical resources and money.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


If you want to improve, be honest with yourself.

1. Analyse yourself objectively and realistically.

2. Seek advice and the opinions of others who can help improve your executive qualities and abilities.

3. Try to profit by the experiences of others.

4. Develop a deep and genuine interest in people. Learn to treat people as human beings.

5. Master the art of effective writing and speaking.

6. Be friendly with others already successful in your particular profession, as well as in allied professions.

7. Develop your own philosophy of life as soon as you can, while you are still young.

8. Never give up.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Know your staff and look out for their welfare

1. See the members of your organization as often as possible and let them see you.

2. Know each of your employees by name.

3. Develop an intimate knowledge of your staff through personal contacts with them.

4. Be concerned about the personal living conditions of your employees if it affects their job performance.

5. Give personal attention to subordinates pay as well as to their personal problems.

6. Provide good working conditions and thus protect the health of your staff.

7. Actively support safety programmes.

8. Know the state of your subordinates' morale.

9. Administer justice impartially and swiftly.

10. Distribute equally and fairly both privileges and distasteful tasks.

11. Provide recreational facilities for the staff.

12. Share their problems.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Always keep your staff informed.

1. Praise the successes of your staff and of your organization. This will build up their morale and motivate to do their best for you.

2. Explain to your key subordinates why a specific task must be done and how you propose to do it.

3. Ensure, through frequent visits, that your subordinate supervisors are passing on the necessary information and the required orders to the staff.

4. Always keep your principal subordinate supervisors informed of future plans and operations.

5. Pass on all information to your staff about rival companies and competing products.

6. Be alert concerning false rumours. Replace rumours by truth.

7. Keep staff informed about current legislation and laws which could affect them, and about any changes proposed in the policies of the organization.

8. Be sure that everyone knows what their job is, what their duties are and who is their immediate supervisor.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Make sure that the task is understood, supervised and accomplished

1. Before giving an order, be sure that the order you are about to give is actually needed.

2. Learn to properly assess a situation.

3. Develop the ability to issue clear, concise, complete, correct and positive orders.

4. Always use the established chain of authority in issuing orders.

5. Encourage subordinates to seek clarification of orders they do not fully understand.

6. Orders given orally should always be repeated back to ensure that they have been properly understood.

7. Supervise the execution of your orders.

8. If you personally supervise the execution of your orders, do not use the established chain of authority.

9. Vary your routine during your supervisory inspections.

10. Always exercise thorough care in the supervision of your staff.

11. Give personal attention and assistance to your subordinates when required.

12. Responsibility for action is not relieved by not giving an action

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Train your staff as a team.

1. Supervise to ensure that the primary mission of your organization is being pursued by your staff.

2. Make sure that the facilities and materials required for accomplishing the primary mission are available and are being properly used.

3. Ensure that activities of your organization are meaningful, fruitful and profitable for the personnel.

4. Eliminate any duplication of efforts, jobs and human resources.

5. Everyone must know the jobs of those with whom they normally work. This facilitates team-work.

6. Everyone must know the functions, requirements, capabilities and limitations of all other units in the organization. This will stimulate proper cooperation and teamwork.

7. Promote team-work by encouraging initiative.

8. Your own enthusiasm can provide the spark of motivation necessary for real team-work.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Make sound and timely decisions.

1. Assess the situation objectively and then make sound and timely decisions for problem solving.

2. Plan for the future as best as possible within the constraints of time and foresight.

3. Enhance your judgement by acquiring technical and professional qualifications.

4. Give measured consideration to the advice and suggestions of your subordinates before making your decisions.

5. Announce your decisions well in advance, giving sufficient lead time to your subordinates to make the necessary plans.

6. Be decisive. Decisiveness is primarily a matter of practice and experience.

7. Encourage your subordinate supervisors to continually assess the situation.

8. Ensure that your staff at all levels know what your current plans and policies are.

9. Give careful consideration to the likely effects of your decisions on your staff at different levels.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Develop a sense of responsibility in your subordinates

1. Your orders and directives should be issued through the established chain of command.

2. Use mission-type orders to the greatest extent possible.

3. Assign responsibility together with proper authority.

4. Give subordinates opportunities wherever possible to perform the duties of the next-higher position in your management hierarchy.

5. Be sensitive and tactful in correcting errors in judgement, initiative or ingenuity by your staff. This will continuously encourage development of their personal qualities.

6. Be quick to recognize the successful accomplishments - e.g., initiative, resourcefulness - of your subordinates.

7. Give advice freely when asked to do so.

8. Try to match jobs with the previous experience, demonstrated competence or potential abilities of your staff.

9. Have faith in every subordinate. Be prompt and fair in backing them to the limit.

10. Always accept responsibility, and insist that your subordinate supervisors also accept responsibility as necessary.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Seek responsibility and be responsible for your actions.

1. You must learn your profession as you develop your capacity for higher responsibilities in the future.

2. Learn well the duties of your immediate superior. Be prepared to take on his or her responsibilities at a moment's notice.

3. You should be physically, mentally and psychologically fit to should heavy responsibilities.

4. Always seek diversified management assignments. In this way you will develop broad experience and capabilities for higher responsibilities.

5. Take full advantage of every opportunity that offers you an increased responsibility.

6. Perform every task - large or small - to the best of your ability.

7. Accept just and honest criticism, and admit to your mistakes.

8. Have the courage of your convictions. Stick to what you think is right.

9. You must assume full responsibility for the failures of those who work for you.

10. Carefully study, analyse and evaluate a subordinate's failure before taking any corrective action.

11. Assume complete responsibility for your own actions.

12. Assuming responsibility for what you fail to do is just as important as assuming responsibility for what you do do.

13. In the absence of any standing orders, seize the initiative and take the action you believe that your superior would have taken in the circumstances.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Always set an example.

1. You must at all times be physically fit, mentally alert, morally correct, well groomed and properly dressed.

2. You must learn to master your emotions completely.

3. Always keep a cheerful and optimistic outlook and attitude.

4. Conduct yourself such that your personal habits are not open to criticism or censure from anyone.

5. Set an example by being factual and courteous.

6. Your word must be your bond.

Source: Fleet, 1967.


Motivate every single staff member to feel important to themselves

Motivate your staff by:
· appealing to their hearts and not their heads
· being genuinely interested in them and what they do
· talking to them in terms of their interests
· giving individuals an identity in the organization
· remembering their names
· using them primarily for tasks for which they have been trained
· giving them a personal need and a desire to learn
· keeping them well informed about their individual progress within the organization
· reinforcing their self-esteem by

- asking for their advice and help

- giving them an opportunity to set their own goals within their job

- showing them how essential their individual efforts are and where they fit into the whole picture

- putting the personal into personnel

- rewarding appropriately for successes gained in competitions with their associates

Source: Fleet, 1967.




Reading note: Motivation

Theories of motivation
Motivation techniques
Laws of motivation

Motivation means 'to move' and is derived from the Latin word movere. It is "the state of an individual's perspective which represents the strength of his or her propensity to exert toward some particular behaviour" (Gibson, 1980). Motivation is an internal force which stimulates, regulates and upholds a person's more important actions. Its existence and nature is deduced from observation and experience of behaviour. By using motivation as a tool, a manager can effectively blend organizational and individual goals. Terry and Franklin (1987) explained motivation as "the need or drive within an individual that drives him or her toward goal-oriented action." It helps in identifying what is done and what can be done.

Scientific management assumes that an employee is an emotional being and emphasizes the importance of encouraging cohesive work groups in which each worker has a sense of belonging. It is recognized that people possess

(i) potential for development,

(ii) capacity for assuming responsibility, and

(iii) readiness to direct behaviour towards organizational goals. It is therefore the basic function of a manager to create an environment which helps people recognize and develop these human characteristics through motivation. A manager is required to comprehend human behaviour in order to utilize motivation as an instrument to increase organizational productivity.

Theories of motivation

There are broadly two types of motivation theories. These are content theories and process theories. Content theories explain the 'why' of human behaviour. Maslow's need hierarchy, Herzberg's two-factor theory and McClelland's need for achievement theory are included in this category. Process theories recognize variables that go into motivation, and their interrelationship.

Content theories

Content theories consider need existence, relatedness, growth, achievement, hygiene and motivating factors.

Need theories

Need theories give importance to psychological factors responsible for particular behaviour aimed at satisfying the needs of individuals. Maslow (1943) propounded a need theory based on the fact that man is a wanting animal, and as soon as one of his needs is satisfied, another appears in its place. The satisfied need ceases to be the motivator of human behaviour. It is the emerging, yet-to-be-satisfied need which influences one's behaviour. The behaviour of an individual, at a particular moment, is usually determined by his or her strongest need. These needs are not necessarily deliberately identified by an individual but may be subliminal. It is therefore essential that needs of the individuals are given importance and that the manager is able to perceive the most important need at any particular moment. Maslow (1943) classified human needs into five main groups: psychological, safety, social, esteem and self-actualization. These five basic needs of an individual form a hierarchy. The higher-level needs are not considered important by an individual until the lower-level needs are satisfied at least partially. Once a need is satisfied, the person is concerned with the next level of need in their personal hierarchy.

ERG Theory

Maslow's five basic needs have been regrouped by Alderfer (1969) into three categories: existence, relatedness and growth (ERG). Alderfer's first level of needs, existence, includes physiological and safety needs. The second need category, relatedness, consists of social and esteem needs. The third category, growth, includes the individual's desire to be self-confident, creative and productive. Alderfer's need theory is based on the assumption that higher-order needs could emerge even before the lower-level needs are fully satisfied.

Need and achievement theory

Propounding an achievement and power theory, McClelland (1962) identified three basic needs within individuals. They are need for achievement, need for power, and need for affiliation. McClelland's need for achievement and affiliation are similar to Maslow's social and esteem needs. Need for power has not been mentioned in Maslow's theory. The strengths of these needs can be identified by administering a Thematic Appreciation Test. Based on his or her understanding, a manager can create a climate to elicit the desired performance from the employee while also providing employee satisfaction and growth.

Two-factor theory

Maslow's need theory is insufficient and has practical limitations in translating needs into something operational, since the criteria for satisfying social needs differ from individual to individual. Herzberg, Mausner and Snyderman (1962) developed a two-factor theory to provide some direction for managers in resolving motivational problems. Arguing that there is little or no relationship between productivity and morale, Herzberg, Mausner and Snyderman's theory is based on the concept of job content (hygiene factors) and job context (motivating factors). Job content refers to the job or work itself, and emerges from the work and employee relationship. Therefore these factors are innate and work in different ways.

Hygiene factors include "technical supervision, interpersonal relationship with peers, salary, working conditions, status, company policy, job security and interpersonal relations with superiors" (Tosi, Rizzo and Carroll, 1986). All of these factors are job contextual and also include maintenance factors. These are considered extrinsic, as they are out of the limit of work and employees. Hygiene factors are satisfiers to the extent that they produce dissatisfaction if absent. However, they are not motivators for better performance.

Motivating factors relate to job content and are concerned with increased satisfaction and the desire to work harder. While their presence provides satisfaction and motivates towards more effort and better performance, their absence does not produce dissatisfaction. Some of the motivating factors are "advancement, the work itself, recognition, and the possibility of growth" (Tosi, Rizzo and Carroll, 1986).

Process theories

Expectancy theory

Expectancy theory attempts to identify the relationship among dynamic variables which influence the behaviour of individuals. It is based on the premise that performance is determined by interactive effects of motivational levels, ability, traits and pride perceptions.

Vroom's expectancy theory (1964) is based on the concept that the level of performance is a multiplicative function of ability and motivation. To get performance, both factors must be present, and if one of these is absent there will be no performance.

Reinforcement theory

Reinforcement theory is based on the assumption that employees can be motivated in a properly designed work environment with acclaim for desirable performance (Skinner, 1953). It contends that the sum of external environment - and not internal needs, wants or desires - determines individual behaviour. In order to improve the performance of employees, managers have to identify powerful reinforcements, such as interesting job assignments, fair pay, promotion and participation in decision making. A reinforcement can be positive or negative, depending upon the situation. Positive impetus strengthens the probability of a desired response, which leads to positive results and repeated desired behaviour. Sometimes negative stimulus can be used to deter undesirable behaviour, but use of positive stimulus is more desirable. Negative reinforcement can be punishment or extinction. Extinction means eliminating an existing reinforcer which has caused a particular behaviour.

Goal-setting theory

Goal-setting theory is based on the premise that performance is the result of a person's intentions to perform (Locke, 1968). People will do what they are trying to do and setting goals will improve their performance. Goals are tasks which a person tries to accomplish. The theory argues that (i) better results are achieved by setting difficult goals rather than easy goals, (ii) specific goals result in better performance than general goals, and (iii) participation in setting goals does not necessarily improve performance. The stages through which the goal-setting process goes through are: (i) event (situation in the environment), (ii) cognition (awareness of the incentives), (iii) evaluation (of the worth of the task), (iv) goal setting (intention to act), and (v) performance.

Motivation techniques

With an understanding of human needs, behaviour and expectations, a manager should be able to create an environment where employees feel content and satisfied, so as to best achieve organizational goals. Motivational methods help in raising the level of personal motivation so that each person uses more of their capabilities. Techniques for motivation can either be intrinsic (related to job content) or extrinsic (related to job context). A motivated work effort increases the person's drive to perform better, which results in improved performance, higher quality of work and increased satisfaction. Quality of work life is quite important in improving productivity and achieving integration. Some of the important methods for improving performance through increased motivation are described below.

Job enrichment

Using a work design approach, the nature of the job can be changed with a view to reducing or eliminating the dreariness of repetitive activities. Through re-design aimed at job enrichment, a person does a variety of tasks rather than a few routine activities. This results in doing more of the job; the person also has some autonomy as to how to do these tasks, and assumes responsibility for quality of performance (Aldag and Brief, 1979). This is vertical job loading, the concept having been based on the two-factor theory of Herzberg, Mausner and Snyderman (1962). The premise is that a job with high growth opportunity, challenge and potential for recognition elicits greater willingness to work.

Job characteristics model

Hackman and Oldham (1976) have developed a job characteristics model which has four variables.

(i) Work outcome, which can be of four types:

(a) Internal work motivation is the degree to which people are swayed by the work in which they are engaged. Internal work motivation is not influenced by pay and other such factors.

(b) Quality of work performance. Productivity can be increased if level of output is maintained while concurrently improving quality.

(c) Job satisfaction is an outcome of the employee's attitude towards work.

(d) Absenteeism and turnover. Productivity is low where absenteeism and employee turnover are high.

(ii) Critical psychological states comprise experienced meaningfulness, experienced responsibility and knowledge of results. When performance is good, critical psychological states keep motivating the person to continue doing well.

(iii) Core job dimensions are interrelated with critical psychological states. They include:

(a) Skill variety: the number of different abilities required to perform the task.

(b) Task identity: the degree to which a person feels responsible for the task.

(c) Task significance: the effect of the task on others.

(d) Autonomy: the degree of freedom which a person has in doing the task.

(e) Feedback: the amount of information that a person gets about the task and how effective performance has been.

(iv) Growth-need strength is the degree to which a person desires to achieve and advance.

Strategies for enriching jobs

Hackman et al. (1975) described five basic strategies for enriching jobs:

(i) Combining tasks so as to increase types of task and different skills required to perform them. Smaller tasks could be combined together into a large complex task which can be assigned to a team. Such a team will be composed of people possessing different skills.

(ii) Forming natural work units to enhance task identity and task significance.

(iii) Establishing a client relationship to improve skill variety, autonomy and feedback.

(iv) Vertical loading to increase the sense of responsibility. Vertical loading is done by adding higher-level (vertical) tasks rather than more from the same (horizontal) level.

(v) Opening feedback channels to improve feedback. This results in better or more precise performance.

Achievement-cum-power training

Based on McClelland's need and achievement theory (1962), this technique involves a training programme for groups of about ten to twenty-five people. The same process is followed for both achievement and power motives. Training is usually conducted by a trainer and involves the following steps:

(i) Create conviction and confidence that motives can be changed.

(ii) Convince participants that developing the strength of achievement motives is in conformity with their environmental needs.

(iii) Teach participants how to act with a high-achievement orientation. Discuss case studies and participants' experiences.

(iv) Record participants' achievement- or power-oriented behaviour and present them to participants so that they can analyse and assess how their actions deviate from high-achievement behaviour.

(v) Each participant sets personal goals, formulates their own action plan, and develops criteria and benchmark for appraising their personal performance.

Management by objectives

Based on goal-setting theory, management by objectives is "a process in which members of the organization work together to identify common goals and then integrate all their efforts in achieving those goals" (Tosi, Rizzo and Carroll, 1986). Specific goals are derived from general, interrelated objectives. The success of management by objectives depends upon how well objectives and action plans are defined, communicated and accepted.

Positive reinforcement programmes

Derived from reinforcement theory, positive reinforcement programmes involve the following steps, as illustrated by Hamner and Hamner (1976) and Tosi, Rizzo and Carroll, (1986):

(i) Identification of specific behaviour problems.

(ii) Determination of the links between antecedents, behaviour and consequences.

(iii) Development and setting of specific behaviourial goals for each person and target behaviour.

(iv) Recording progress toward the goal.

(v) Application of appropriate consequences (rewards, punishment or extinction).

Six ways of positive reinforcement have been identified to motivate employees (Hamner and Hamner, 1976). These are:

(i) Do not reward all employees equally. Rewards must be deserved and valued.

(ii) Failure to reinforce could modify behaviour - usually in a negative direction.

(iii) Employees should be informed as to what they should do to get reinforcement. This can be done by setting goals and monitoring performance to get timely feedback.

(iv) Employees should be informed through appropriate and timely communication as and when they are doing wrong. Through such communication and other needed help from the manager, employees can improve their performance. Contrary to general belief, timely feedback through such communications acts as positive reinforcement. Lack of communication creates confusion and a feeling of manipulation.

(v) Do not admonish or punish a subordinate in the presence of others.

(vi) Be fair and impartial.

Laws of motivation

Motives are the primary energizers of human behaviour. However, they are not the only determinants of the performance of individuals. Human performance is basically a function of habits and skills that are acquired through learning and teaching. Motivation may give desired results only when employees are properly recruited, selected, placed, inducted and trained. Fleet (1967) has suggested eleven dynamic laws which managers can follow to improve motivation among their subordinates:

(i) Develop yourself technically and professionally.
(ii) Be honest with yourself.
(iii) Know your staff and look out for their welfare.
(iv) Always keep your staff informed.
(v) Make sure the task is understood, supervised and accomplished.
(vi) Train your personnel as a team.
(vii) Make sound and timely decisions.
(viii) Develop a sense of responsibility in your subordinates.
(ix) Seek responsibility and be responsible for your actions.
(x) Always set an example.
(xi) Motivate every single person to feel important to themselves.
(xii) Put the first eleven laws into action, and make them work.


Aldag, R., & Brief, A. 1979. Task Design and Employee Motivation. Glenview MD: Scott, Foresman.

Alderfer, C.P. 1969. An empirical test of a new theory of human needs. Organizational Behavior and Human Performance, 4(2): 142-175.

Fleet, J.K.V. 1967. The Dynamics of Motivation. Englewood Cliffs NJ: Prentice-Hall.

Gibson, F. 1980. Managing Organisational Behaviour. Homewood IL: Irwin.

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