Motivation is a key factor for business as it is often recognised that well-motivated employees are more productive and produce better quality work. The way managers motivate people has significantly changed over the last few years
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MANAGING AND LEADING PEOPLE MANGING FOR RESULTS Subject: Employees contributions can no longer be extracted by shame, guilt and fear, it has to be offered. Issues about motivation and commitment are critical. Yet many of the levers which managers have relied on to motivate employees are increasingly unreliable. Critically evaluate this view in the light of examples from your experience of a work organisation. INTRODUCTION 3 FACTORS GOVERNING THE WORKING RELATIONSHIP 4 1. THE EVOLUTION OF THE WORKING RELATIONSHIP 4 2. RISKS INHERENT TO THE USE OF SHAME, FEAR AND GUILT AS MOTIVATORS 5 GOOD PRACTICE AND PSYCHOLOGICAL CONTRACT 6 1. HOW TO EFFECTIVELY USE FEAR, SHAME AND GUILT IN PRACTICE 6 2. THE PSYCHOLOGICAL CONTRACT 6 CONCLUSION 8 Introduction Motivation can be defined as "a decision making process, through which the individual chooses the desired outcomes and sets in motion and behaviour appropriate to them" (Buchanan 2004.). Motivation is a key factor for business as it is often recognised that well-motivated employees are more productive and produce better quality work. The way managers motivate people has significantly changed over the last few years. Employees' contribution used to be extracted by shame, guilt and fear and these factors used to be an effective mean to motivate people. However, few questions subsist: do organisations still rely on fear, shame and guilt nowadays? Are these factors reliable?
Good Practice and psychological contract 1. How to effectively use fear, shame and guilt in practice Managers can increase productivity and create a competitive advantage by implementing a certain amount of fear within the workplace. As mentioned above, fear, shame and guilt often reflect bad practice. However fear can be a great motivator because it motivates every aspect of our lives and is part of the human nature. There was fear of parents and teachers, fear of not graduating. Fear is present in all important moments of our lives. To make fear, guilt and shame act as motivators managers need to make sure that the consequences are meaningful. Managers have to explain clearly what they expect from their team members. When goals are clearly laid out and agreed then managers can use fear only when employees do not meet these expectations. My company is using SMART targets. Each employee receives objectives and goals which are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. For example one of my SMART targets is to ensure that, this year, 80% of the roles are filled within 3 months. This goal is specific, easily measurable, achievable and realistic as I am working on a fair amount of roles and my target is 80%.
Conclusion To summarise, there is no simple answer to the question on how to motivate people. Managers used to rely on shame or guilt of people and some organisations are still using these factors as motivators. The way these levers are used often reflect bad practice, gives a very negative image of the company and is also increasingly unreliable due to the change in the labour market and culture. Employees are not scared anymore to lose their jobs and will always look for more flexibility and for a better life balance. The development of Human Rights, the tendency of the Employment legislation to be more and more protective for employees and the possibility for people to benefit from Government support with concepts such as Employee Benefits or Job Seekers Allowance do not allow anymore managers to extract employees contributions by fear, shame and guilt. Exceptions exist and these factors can help to produce better quality work and increase productivity but only if used appropriately. It is very hard in practice to draw the line between bad and good practice and there is always a risk if organisation uses these factors to create bad morale, increase stress, turnover and reduce overall performance. In my opinion the most effective way to motivate people is to tailor motivation to each employee. It is essential for organisation to understand and take into account the complexity of the human nature before implementing a motivation strategy.
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