Managing Organizational Behavior

By Ronald R. Sims | Go to book overview

Chapter 3

Motivating Today’s Workforce

INTRODUCTION
“Nobody wants to work like they did in the good old days.” “Half the problems we have around here are due to a lack of personal motivation.” “Workers just don’t seem to care.” Such sentiments are often expressed by many of today’s managers. However, motivating employees is not a new problem. Much of the pioneering work in the field of management, which took place early in the twentieth century, was concerned with motivation. One can even find examples showing motivation problems existed back in biblical times. One reason why leading is such an important management activity is that it entails ensuring that each member of a team is motivated to perform highly and help the organization achieve its goals. When managers are effective, the outcome of the leading process is a highly motivated workforce. Managers frequently ask the following questions:
• What does it take to motivate my direct reports?
• How do I get people to do things?
• Why is motivation so complicated and difficult to understand?
• Can basic principles of motivation apply to today’s individual employees and teams?
• Am I motivated?

No two managers will answer these questions in exactly the same manner. Motivation is an individual phenomenon affecting each person in a

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