Organizational behavior theories are known to differ as to what motivates employees, not because the essential characteristics of all employees are varied across organizations and industries. Rather, the motivational needs of employees differ from organization to organization because separate work situations, ethics and settings, in addition to their interaction with individual personalities, teams, and managements call for different employee needs to be prioritized.
Employee motivation is simply referred to as an organizational method to satisfy employees in areas where they feel unsatisfied. Whereas poor health and safety conditions might be the Number One challenge to encounter in Company ABC, it is possible that the employees of FMC Green River would be more motivated by higher salaries. Moreover, the employees of FMC Green River may hold a collective opinion that their working conditions are the best in the industry.
Hence, the management of FMC Green River would not be as focused on improving health and safety conditions as Company ABC should be. Given that job performance is a function of ability and motivation, it is appropriate to inquire into the specific needs of the workers in order to employ the correct mix of employee motivation strategies to boost job performance, company-wide (“Employee Motivation,” 2007). As an example, the employees of the Piketon Research and Extension Center and Enterprise Center were asked about the main motivating factors at their particular workplace.
According to the research findings, the employees believed themselves to be motivated by the following, in the order of importance: “a) interesting work, (b) good wages, (c) full appreciation of work done, (d) job security, (e) good working conditions, (f) promotions and growth in the organization, (g) feeling of being in on things, (h) personal loyalty to employees, (i) tactful discipline, and (j) sympathetic help with personal problems (Lindner, 1998).
Contrary to these findings, a peer reviewed study on employee motivation found that most employees across various organizations believe the following to be the chief motivators at the workplace: “enjoyment of the work; work/life balance; pay satisfaction; link between pay and performance;” and “adequate staffing levels” (Katcher). Thus, it appears essential to increase employee motivation only after inquiring into the main motivators in a specific organization.
Also within a single organization, the blue collar workers are expected to be more motivated by an increase in pay, while the white collar employees might believe that enjoyment of work is more important. In this case, the organization would have to divide up its employees in two separate groups to inquire into the particular motivators for the blue collar workers as opposed to the white collar employees.
It is best, therefore, for employee motivation strategies to be based on group by group studies, although organizations may also apply the rule of generalization. In that event, Company ABC would believe that it could effectively use the motivators of FMC Green River’s employees to improve the job performance of its own workers.