High employee motivation is a function of many internal and external factors and can be intrinsically or extrinsically led. Many employers feel that the real objective of the supervisor or HR manager is to ensure that employees are intrinsically motivated. This is because such an employee works hard on his job because he enjoys it and wants to do it, and he may continue to do so regardless of extrinsic rewards to a certain extent (Schop, 2). I myself faced a situation recently where I had immense drive and enthusiasm to do that work and it was majorly sourced by intrinsic motivation.
One of my professors was starting a community welfare club and requested students to join in as volunteers. We had to go to different organizations that worked with special people and spend time with them and do various activities. I joined in as a volunteer as well and started at a school that worked for the rehabilitation of special children. The first day was an eye opener for me. There were kids of all ages there, handicapped in some way or the other, and yet they were the sweetest and the most adorable children.
Not only had I felt thankful to God for making me such a complete human being and for bestowing such blessings on me, but I also felt deeply for those children. I started visiting them twice a week and did various different activities with them for hours. Time always flew by quickly and all the children would hug and kiss me when I was leaving. After leaving that place, I always felt a strange sense of tranquility over me and great personal satisfaction. It was a great feeling to be doing something for those who are less privileged than us.
The love they showed me, the thankfulness in their gestures and the smiles in the eyes was enough to take me there every other day. I started to love spending time there with those people, and started to visit them more and more regularly, taking various things with me for them. From twice a week to thrice, I started spending ten to fifteen hours a week over there. This was all because I loved going there and enjoyed every minute I spent there. The pleasure, the comfort and the satisfaction after spending time there intrinsically motivated me.
Seeing my dedication, my professor made me the leader of the volunteers working there, which added to my motivation. He gave me full autonomy and freedom to decide and plan activities, shifts and rotations. I had a chance to introduce more fun activities there for the children and plan the work of volunteers, and this also added to my motivation. Encouraging leadership and responsibility opportunities serves as one of the true motivators (N. a, 3) and proves to be very encouraging for the worker.
Not only this, my professor also from time to time encouraged me and complimented me on my efforts. These things added to the drive I already had because the appreciation made me feel even nicer about my work. I was then asked to expand our volunteer network and organize a proper recruitment drive from various other schools and colleges. I planned the whole process with my team and we went to different institutions and did interviews. The entire responsibility for this was on me and I this again served as a great motivation tool.
I started worked harder and harder on it and gave in my full energy and dedication to this activity. My professor was highly impressed by my drive and the contributions I was making to his cause. At the annual dinner for students, he gave me a certificate of appreciation for being the most effective contributor in front of the entire student and faculty body. I felt a great moment of pride at that point and it further instilled in me the drive to work for this cause.
I still volunteer for the children and our network of volunteers, which started from fifteen students, has now expanded to over a sixty students. My motivation was highly intrinsic and self instilled because of the satisfaction I got from doing something for those people. But it was also complemented and enhanced by my professor who from time to time encouraged me, and added to my drive by giving me an opportunity to exercise freedom and autonomy. The reward in the end was an extrinsic tool that also encouraged me to further pursue it with more energy and enthusiasm.
Courtney from Study Moose