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Motivation and Leadership Effect on Job Performance Essay


Leadership and motivation traditionally play a very important role in the functioning of organizations. Nowadays, the role of leadership and motivation increases even more significantly because of the growing competition and the increasing significance of human resources for the progress of organizations. In fact, it should be pointed out that leadership and motivation are closely entangled concepts which constitute an important part of the success of an organization. It is obvious that the effective leadership and motivation can contribute to the progress of an organization, while poor leadership and the lack of motivation can weaken the normal functioning of an organization and lead to the crisis within an organization that will naturally affects its performance.

In this respect, it is important to underline the fact that leadership and motivation affect considerably the organizational behavior and culture and they define the formation of the effective relationships between the personnel of an organization. In such a situation, it is necessary to fully reveal the significance of leadership and motivation in the current business environment in order to assess adequately perspective of the improvement of the effectiveness of leadership and motivation within an organization. At the same time, the analysis of theoretical framework only, it appears that insufficient for the understanding of the significance of leadership and motivation for the performance of an organization. Consequently, it is also necessary to pay a particular attention to the practical aspects of leadership and motivation that means that it is necessary to analyze some practical examples that could reveal the significance of leadership and motivation for the performance of an organization

Review of Literature

Motivation and Job Performance

* The level of performance of employees relies not only on their actual skills but also on the level of motivation each person exhibits (Burney et al., 2007). * Motivation is an inner drive or an external inducement to behave in some particular way, typically a way that will lead to rewards (Dessler, 1978). * Over-achieving, talented employees are the driving force of all firms so it is essential that organizations try hard to motivate and hold on to the best employees (Harrington, 2003). * The quality of human resource management is a critical influence on the performance of the firm. Concern for strategic integration, commitment flexibility and quality, has called for attention for employee’s motivation and retention. Financial motivation has become the most concern in today’s organization, and tying to apply Maslow’s basic needs, non-financial aspect only comes in when financial motivation has failed. * According to Greenberg and Baron (2003, 2000) definition of motivation could be divided into three main parts. The first part looks at arousal that deals with the drive, or energy behind individual (s) action.

People turn to be guided by their interest in making a good impression on others, doing interesting work and being successful in what they do. The second part referring to the choice people make and the direction their behavior takes. The last part deals with maintaining behavior clearly defining how long people have to persist at attempting to meet their goals. * Motivation can be intrinsic and extrinsic. Extrinsic motivation concerns behavior influenced by obtaining external rewards (Hitt, Esser, & Marriott, 1992). Praise or positive feedback, money, and the absence of punishment are examples of extrinsic or external rewards (Deci, 1980). Intrinsic motivation is the motivation to do something simply for the pleasure of performing that particular activity (Hagedoorn and Van Yperen, 2003). Examples of intrinsic factors are interesting work, recognition, growth, and achievement. * Several studies have found there to be a positive relationship between intrinsic motivation and job performance as well as intrinsic motivation and job satisfaction (Linz, 2003).

This is significant to firms in today’s highly competitive business environment in that intrinsically motivated employees will perform better and, therefore, be more productive, and also because satisfied employees will remain loyal to their organization and feel no pressure or need to move to a different firm. * Deci and Ryan (2000) conducted and replicated an experiment that showed the negative impact of monetary rewards on intrinsic motivation and performance. A group of college students were asked to work on an interesting puzzle. Some were paid and some were not paid for the work. The students that were not being paid worked longer on the puzzle and found it more interesting than the students being paid. When the study was brought into a workplace setting, employees felt that their behavior was being controlled in a dehumanizing and alienating manner by the rewards.

It was discovered that rewards would seriously decrease an employee’s motivation to ever perform the task being rewarded, or one similar to it, any time in the future. Another observation of the study was that employees would expect a reward every time the task was to be completed if the reward was offered at one time. Employees would require the reward in order to perform the job and would probably expect the reward to increase in amount. If the rewards were not increased or if they were taken away they actually served as negative reinforcement. * Deci and Ryan (2001), in collaboration with two of their colleagues, conducted a study to examine the effects of performance-contingent rewards on an employee’s intrinsic motivation. * (Cameron, Deci, Koestner, and Ryan, 2001).

These types of rewards are very controlling since these rewards are directly associated with an employee’s performance of some task. In that respect, performance-contingent rewards undermine intrinsic motivation; however, if the reward given to the employee conveys that the employee has performed on a truly outstanding level, the reward would serve to solidify that employee’s sense of competence and decrease the negative effect on that employee’s intrinsic motivation. Also significant in the study was the importance of the interpersonal atmosphere within which the performance-contingent rewards were distributed.

* When Cameron et al. (2001) compared the administering of rewards in a controlling climate and in a non-controlling climate, they discovered that the performance-contingent rewards given in the more controlling interpersonal climate undermined intrinsic motivation. To prevent the decrease in employees’ intrinsic motivation, the interpersonal climate when distributing performance-contingent rewards should be more supportive. * Vroom (1964) proposes that people are motivated by how much they want something and how likely they think they are to get it he suggest that motivation leads to efforts and the efforts combined with employees ability together with environment factors which interplay’s resulting to performance. This performance interns lead to various outcomes, each of which has an associated value called Valence.

* Adams (1965) on his part suggests that people are motivated to seek social equity in the rewards they receive for high performance. According to him the outcome from job includes; pay recognition, promotion, social relationship and intrinsic reward. To get these rewards various inputs needs to be employed by the employees to the job as time, experience, efforts, education and loyalty.He suggests that, people tend to view their outcomes and inputs as a ratio and then compare these ratios with others and turn to become motivated if this ratio is high.

Leadership Effectiveness and Job Performance

Leadership, or more specifically effective leadership, is every bit as crucial (if not more so) in African Organizations as it is throughout the world. African organizations are no different from others Worldwide in terms of striving for performance in order to be globally competitive. The South African situation, however, is incredibly complex as many organizations are caught in the middle of a web of authoritarian hierarchies and traditional leadership approaches, as well as bureaucratic hierarchies mixed with modern approaches to leadership * (Grobler, Wärnich, Carrell, Elbert and Hatfield, 2002). It is argued that effective leadership has a positive influence on the performance of organizations (Maritz, 1995; Bass, 1997; Charlton, 2000). Ultimately it is the performance of many Individuals that culminates in the performance of the organization, or in the achievement of organizational goals. Effective leadership is instrumental in ensuring organizational performance.

* (Cummings and Schwab, 1973; Hellriegel, Jackson, Slocum, Staude, Amos, Klopper, Louw and Oosthuizen, 2004). As a result, many leadership theories have been proposed in the last fifty years which are claimed to have influenced the overall effectiveness of the organizations where they have been employed. In the competitive world business environment it is vital that organisations employ leadership styles that enable organisations to survive in a dynamic environment. * (Maritz, 1995; Bass,1997) Performance has been defined by Hellriegel, Jackson and Slocum (1999) as the level of an individual’s work achievement after having exerted effort.

* Cummings and Schwab (1973) and Whittenand Cameron (1998) believe that performance is ultimately an individual phenomenon with environmental variables influencing performance primarily through their effect on the individual determinants of performance – ability and motivation. * Behling and McFillen (1996) confirmed the link between high performance and leadership in the United States by developing a model of charismatic/transformational leadership where the leaders’ behaviour is said to give rise to inspiration, awe and empowerment in his subordinates, resulting in exceptionally high effort, exceptionally high commitment and willingness to take risks. It has been widely accepted that effective organizations require effective leadership, and organizational performance will suffer in direct proportion to the neglect of this (Maritz, 1995; Ristow, Amos and Staude, 1999).

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