Motivation in the Workplace

What is Motivation in the Workplace? Motivation is a powerful force that originates inside an individual and influences his or her decision making process. It is this personification of strong inner needs that inspires the person to strive towards a desirable goal. Motivation in the workplace can be defined by Hallmark’s twelve factors of workplace motivation. These include intrinsic and extrinsic (or external) factors.

Intrinsic Motivation. This refers to those prerequisites for starting, maintaining, developing, and motivating a person to perform his duties. Intrinsic motivation is the energy generated by personal experiences that have shaped a person’s preferences, objectives, and feelings toward a specific course of action. Extrinsic Motivation. On the other hand, extrinsic motivation is derived from external events or situations that induce a person to take a particular action.

Motivation is an essential part of the work environment. A company culture that lacks motivation risks slipping into the cracks of organizational performance, hampering overall productivity and jeopardizing corporate profitability. In order to manage and ultimately improve motivation, companies should implement a series of steps that vary from company to company:

Creating a Sense of Worth. A compelling vision for the future of the company is the initial foundation of good corporate motivation. In addition, the ability to communicate this vision effectively to all employees through various means helps to create the right atmosphere for motivation. It can be conveyed through internal communications and externally through corporate activities and programs. Companies should consider hiring a consultant who will help them develop their company culture and motivate employees accordingly.

Attaining Intrinsic Motivation. An intrinsic motivation occurs when employees feel a reward after achieving a target. Intrinsic motivation is more easily achieved when workers are aware of the benefits they will reap after a certain action. However, extrinsic motivation comes from rewards offered outside of the workplace, such as bonuses or raises that may further boost workers’ motivation. Experts recommend that companies avoid rewarding employees for extrinsic motivation, because doing so may have a negative effect on workplace performance and employee retention.

Attaining Affiliation. People are more likely to feel a sense of belonging when they are surrounded by people with similar beliefs, goals, and motivations. This is why it has been suggested that companies create work teams composed of people with similar characteristics, giving them an opportunity to learn and share information about common work-related problems. This strategy has been shown to foster higher productivity and increase workers’ satisfaction with their job.

Extrinsic motivation involves external rewards that can be difficult to match. When workers feel that they have been rewarded fairly for their efforts, they are likely to feel more driven to achieve even more, leading to increased productivity. Intrinsic motivation is not easily attained, as the same feelings do not arise if employees are given rewards without effort. Although extrinsic motivation can be useful when employers are willing to put in the time to ensure that rewards are appropriately deserved, this type of motivation has been shown to be more effective when employees already feel a sense of belonging. This means that external motivation should be done sparingly and only with the goal of improving workplace performance.

Learning about the different types of motivation and how it can affect employees in the workplace is helpful for managers and employees alike. Understanding these different motivation strategies can be used by managers to inspire employees to become more productive and increase overall workplace performance. Motivation in the workplace may be a difficult concept to understand initially, but understanding it and being able to effectively use motivation techniques can go a long way towards increasing overall productivity and performance. Understanding these different motivational techniques and how they can affect employees in the workplace can be used by managers as a way of motivating them to work harder, achieve more, or create better relationships with co-workers.

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