Motivation

by Business Case Studies on Tuesday 3rd May, 2011

For skilled and experienced embroiderers, being asked to work on Kate Middleton's wedding dress must be one of the highlights of their careers. This recognition of the quality of their work must be highly motivating. Jenny Adin-Christine, one of the embroiderers, said 'It makes it worth all the years of training'. Anne Butcher commented that 'We've all enjoyed the experience. It's a once in a lifetime chance. We've worked as a team and we are pleased with the response to the dress'. They now hope that the Duchess of Cambridge will visit to see their work. Whilst embroidering the lace on the dress, designed by Sarah Burton at Alexander McQeen, the team had to wash their hands every half an hour and change needles regularly. (BBC News 30th April 2011)

For many organisations, such an opportunity just isn't possible though. They have to consider other ways to motivate their staff. Tesco, for example, employs a range of methods to motivate workers to be productive and provide the best possible service. The Employee Reward Programme offers such things as holiday discounts, free shares and pension schemes. Tesco also promotes motivation through the training and development opportunities it provides for staff to allow them to grow within the company. Engineering company Siemens also provides training and development for its employees to help fulfil Maslow's higher order needs, in addition to empowering workers to take more control of their work. Lower order needs are also met within Siemens through pay and the provision of a safe working environment. Of course, these are only a few of the different motivational methods employed by Tesco and Siemens. A vital role of managers in organisations like these is to ensure workers are motivated, as a motivated workforce has mutual benefits for both the employees and the organisation.

Questions

1.What are the five levels in Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs?
2.Which of Maslow's needs would a visit to the embroiderers by The Duchess of Cambridge help to meet?
3.According to the article, which other of Maslow's needs may have been met when working on the wedding dress? Explain why.
4.Analyse the reasons why organisations like Tesco and Siemens needs to have a motivated workforce.

Answers to questions

1.What are the five levels in Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs?

  • Basic/physiological needs
  • Safety needs
  • Social needs
  • Self-esteem needs
  • Self-actualisation

2.Which of Maslow's needs would a visit to the embroiderers by The Duchess of Cambridge help to meet? This may fulfil their Self-Esteem needs as it would show recognition of the work that they do.

3.According to the article, which other of Maslow's needs may have been met when working on the wedding dress? Explain why.The project may also have helped to fulfil the social needs of the workers. This is because they worked as a team to complete the work.

4.Analyse the reasons why organisations like Tesco and Siemens needs to have a motivated workforce.Motivated workforces benefit organisations because they:

  • are more productive
  • provide better quality service or goods
  • have a lower staff turnover – this reduces costs and ensures that the workforce becomes more experienced
  • have lower absenteeism rate – again this reduces costs but should also ensure that service and output remain high
  • are less likely to make mistakes
  • are less likely to become involved in conflict and industrial disputes
  • require less supervision

Previous post:

Next post: