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Economics Coursework

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

To what extent is Marks and Spencer successful at motivating their employees? Introduction Marks & Spencer (M&S) is a British retailer, with 760 stores in more than 30 countries around the world. It is one of the most iconic and widely recognized chain stores in the UK with 520 stores, and is the largest clothing retailer in the country, as well as being a multi-billion pound food retailer. Most of its shops sell both of these categories. It also has a third line of business selling homewares such as bed linen, but this is far smaller than the other two. In 1998 it became the first British retailer to make a pre-tax profit of over �1 billion.-direct quote from Wikipedia website (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marks_&_Spencer) Motivation towards better performance depends on the satisfaction of needs for responsibility, achievement, recognition and growth. Needs are felt, and their intensity varies from one person to another and from time to time, and so does the extent to which they are motivating. Behaviour is learned, earned reward encourages even better performance, thus reinforcing desired behaviour. Taylor's Four Principles of Scientific Management In 1911 Frederick Taylor published his work "The Principles of Scientific Management". In this he described how the application of the scientific method to the management of workers could greatly improve productivity. Scientific management methods called for optimizing the way that tasks were preformed and simplifying the jobs enough so that workers could be trained to perform their specialised sequence of motions in the one "best" way. After years of different experiments to determine optimal work methods, Taylor proposed the following four principles of scientific management: * Replace rule of thumb work methods with methods based on a scientific study of the tasks * Scientifically select, train and develop each worker rather than passively leaving them to train themselves * Cooperate with the workers to ensure that the scientifically developed methods are being followed * Divide work nearly equally between managers and workers, so that the managers apply scientific ...read more.

Middle

* All employees are offered SAYE, which is the opportunity to buy shares at a given price. This allows employees to feel more motivated and allows M&S to have people buying more of their shares. WEAKNESS *Staff could lend their cards to large number of friends who would all come and buy discounted items from M&S; this would result in M&S losing out on the money they would have otherwise made. * If one member of staff is given a reward for working hard, this could create envy and demotivation between staff as another employee could feel ignored and cheated. OPPORTUNITY THREATS EXTERNAL Next INTERNAL STRENGTH * Staff are given 25% discount on most items for themselves and immediate family. This should make them feel valued and will also enhance customer loyalty as the staff and their family will shop a lot from next. * Staff are offered a choice of pensions and can choose which ever one suits them, this will leave them feeling valued and needed and hence more motivated * Staff are given the opportunity to subscribe to a subsidised healthcare scheme, this will let them know that they are working in a caring environment and should help make them feel more motivated * Staff are also offered free life insurance which should help make them feel valued and indispensable WEAKNESSES * If one member of staff is given a reward for working hard, this could create envy and demotivation between staff as another employee could feel ignored and cheated. OPPORTUNITY THREATS EXTERNAL By conducting my SWOT analysis I have analysed the Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats for Marks and Spencer and its rival Next. Although Marks and Spencer has more Weaknesses than its rival, I think that their advantages are the relevant ones needed to successfully motivate their employees. To keep employees motivated I think it's important for them to be offered a discount at the store they work for, this is done by both Marks and Spencer and Next. ...read more.

Conclusion

The media analysis shows that Marks and Spencer have spent a lot of time and money on schemes to motivate and encourage their employees to work to their full potential. Although they have been criticised for the amount of money they have spent on motivating their employees, M&S have stuck up for their schemes and stressed that they consider employee motivation to be one of the most important things for a business. This shows that Marks and Spencer do consider motivation to be important and due to this they continuosly spend time and money on their employees. Comparing this with the questionnaire results we see that a high majority of employees said they were motivated when they go to work, this shows that Marks and Spencer are successful at keeping their employees motivating. Overall we can see that Marks and Spencer are successful at motivating their employees, they spend time and effort on planning outings and schemes to keep staff feeling needed and cared about. Although Marks and Spencer have not stuck to a particular motivation theory; instead they have managed to successfully combine them to suit the majority of people. Their pay and reward system is set out to motivate those people who get motivated most with pay. Marks and Spencer have recognised that there are people who need other things to be motivated and therefore they give praise, recognition and rewards for their employees achievements. They also keep good relationships between all employees including managers. To keep up the high level of motivation, Marks and Spencer will need to talk to the 4 members of staff who said they were unmotivated and try to sort this problem out. If this is not sorted, other employees could listen to their complaining and start feeling unmotivated. They must also continue to keep providing schemes and talks to keep the motivation of the staff high. After looking at all the data and evidence here, I can conclude that Marks and Spencer are successful at motivating their employees. ?? ?? ?? ?? Iram Qureshi 1 ...read more.

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