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Motivating Employees Case Study Essay

In order to be productive at work or at home an individual must be motivated to complete their task. There are two main forms of motivation, intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic motivation is the desire to do the task right out of the satisfaction of a job well done without any ‘rewards’. Extrinsic motivation comes from external sources such as incentives programs. Both can be equally effective in the right situation. SAS Institute has gained a high reputation for their ability to motivate its employees with a balance of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation.

How Does SAS motivate its employees?

The SAS Institute has long since set the standards for the ideal workplace. Focusing on both intrinsic and extrinsic motivational methods, SAS strives to ensure its employees enjoy what do and continue to stay interested in their work. SAS also encourages their employees to occasionally switch areas of expertise, gaining additional training if it is required. Using this approach, SAS keeps their employees from getting bored and losing interest in their job. In addition, “The SAS Institute also cares about its employees and their families’ well-being both on and off the job.”(George, Jones 2012) At its headquarters in Cary, North Carolina, SAS Institute also offers employees and their families 200 acres of luxuries activities as well as on-site childcare, healthcare and many other fitness and recreational benefits. What factors are likely to contribute to intrinsic motivation at SAS? The intrinsic motivation at the SAS institute can be attributed to many work and personal related factors.

As quoted in the text, Bev Brown from external communications states: “Some may think that because SAS is family-friendly and has great benefits that we don’t work hard…. But people do work hard here, because they’re motivated to take care of a company that takes care of them.”(George, Jones, 2012) The SAS institute works hard to keep their employees happy and motivated with generous benefits such as unlimited sick days and flexible schedules. As mentioned earlier, SAS offers on-site healthcare, childcare and many other benefits that not only benefit the employees but their families as well. Another factor that may contribute to the intrinsic motivation at SAS is the option to change jobs within the company. SAS offers additional training, if necessary, to employees who wish to switch fields.

This keeps their employees interested in their work and productivity at a maximum. What factors are likely to contribute to extrinsic motivation at SAS? The managers at the SAS Institute are of the firm belief that employees need to feel that the work they do is making a difference within the company. SAS offers many incentive bonuses that are based on work performance. Employees can also take advantage of services offered such as massages, dry cleaning, car detailing and many recreational activities that include swimming and golfing. How might SAS’s long-term focus affect employee motivation?

James Goodnight, long time CEO and co-founder of the SAS Institute, has implemented a long-term focus comprised of developing their software from scratch and setting up a long line of research and development projects. Not only does this approach help SAS when the economy takes a downward turn, but it serves as purposeful motivation for its employees. Firstly, employees don’t have to worry about getting laid off based on an economic crisis. Creating software from scratch also helps employees get creative.

They get to design every nook and cranny of the software from the brainstorming process to the completed project. Overall, the SAS institute has a long history of happy and productive employees. SAS’s turnover rate is at an incredible 2%, while the rest of the software industry holds around 22%. SAS has maintained its status on Fortune Magazines “100 Best Companies to Work for in America” for 13 years in a row, ranking first in 2010. This is only possible by motivating its employees intrinsically, extrinsically, and therefore giving them a reason to produce great work.

Reference
George, J. M., & Jones, G. R. (2012). Understanding and Managing Organizational Behavior (6th ed.). Prentice Hall.


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