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Essay: Career motivation

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  • Subject area(s): Management essays
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  • Published: 12 October 2015*
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  • Words: 1,582 (approx)
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Motivation is one of the key factors which help in extracting the best out of employees. Employees perform well if they feel their importance in the system. Motivation plays an essential role in employee development.

Amoako (2011), Numerous motivation theories have influenced the way organizations manage employees to achieve a motivated work force. These theories attempt to explain why people behave the way they do and advice on factors and strategies which when employed can get the best out of employees in terms of their commitment to work. Two-factor theory or the motivator-hygiene theory proposed by Frederick Herzberg explains the role of these job factors. First, is the hygiene factor which when adequate/reasonable in a job, pacifies the employees and do not make them dissatisfied. These factors are extrinsic to work which usually describe the job environment/scenario. Hygiene factors are also called as dissatisfiers or maintenance factors as they are required to avoid dissatisfaction. The hygiene factors symbolized the physiological needs which the individuals wanted and expected to be fulfilled. Second, is the motivator factor or also called as satisfier which yields positive satisfaction. These factors are inherent to work and motivate the employees for a superior performance. Employees find these factors intrinsically rewarding. The motivators symbolized the psychological needs that were perceived as an additional benefit. Managers must make sure that the work is stimulating and rewarding so that the employees are motivated to work and perform harder and better.

Career motivation ‘is defined as the set of individual characteristics and associated career decisions and behaviors that reflect the person’s career identity, insight into factors affecting his or her career, and resilience in the face of unfavourable career conditions.’ An organization could take steps to increase levels of career motivation in order to reduce turnover (because people are more motivated and happier), increase employee morale, and increase productivity. Employees would increase their own awareness about their motivations, where those motivations are rooted, and what they mean (Tobes, 2006).

Situations in Asia as stated by Agba et al. (2010), shows that the increasing demand for right people in organization is tremendous due to changing economic scenario. Nowadays, the organizations are becoming international in their operations. To withstand the international competition, organization should develop and retain skilled, talented and motivated employees so as to develop quality, cost consciousness and productivity.
Motivation will help managers decide what actions to take to encourage their employees (Burton, 2012). Motivation is the act of providing motive that causes someone to act. In other words, motivation causes someone to act. With relation to the workplace, Ray Williams (2012) described motivation as, ‘predisposition to behave in a purposeful manner to achieve specific, unmet needs and the will to achieve, and the inner force that drives individuals to accomplish personal organizational goals. A person becomes motivated in order to achieve their own personal goals as well as the organizational goals. The more motivated an employee is, the more likely they are to have organizational commitment and identify themselves with the organization.

Career motivation influences career decision and behaviors. Thus, career motivation is expected to be related to perceived career plateau and outcome variables. Employees with high levels of career motivation are likely to perceive their career goals realistically and pursue them with more confidence under a negative environment, which may lead them to perceive higher job satisfaction and organizational commitment than those with lower levels of career motivation (Jung and Tak, 2008).

Globally, motivation is a function of how effective management is able to design and implement good career development programme in the organization (Agba et al., 2010). Employees want management to show interest in their career development. Management’s reward in this regard will increase workers’ productivity and greater commitment to the organizational goals.

Moreover, Day and Allen (2004) stated that there is a relationship between career motivation and career development. Career motivation can also be enhanced through career development support. This can be achieved by encouraging employees to think about the long-term effects of their current work behavior and to develop career plans. Relatively in the study of Wang (2009), it shows that work centrality leads to the content-oriented career development and the desire for upward mobility leads to the process-related career development. In order to enhance employees’ career motivation, employers can provide the content-oriented working tasks to employees with a high work centrality, and increase promotion opportunities to employees with a high desire for upward mobility. Jan (2010) averred that for such long term plan, maintaining employee motivation level is not an easy task and the organization has to create a shared interest so that the employee stay with the organization for a longer period. Career development can prove to be a source of achieving such long term motivation of the employees. The need for integrating career development in HRD program is not only to motivate the employee to stay longer with the organization but the impact of such motivation also adds to the learning pace of the employees.

Career development involves an organized, formalized, planned effort to achieve a balance between the individual’s career needs and the organization’s workforce requirements. Career development is about the development of employees that is beneficial to both the individual and organization, and is a complex process (Ababneh, 2013). Individual development interacts with the organization and its development through the individual’s career (Beardwell et al., 2004).

Along this, Mwanje (2004), emphasized that career development would then meet the needs of both the individual and the organization. Career development and staff motivation are key strategic considerations for all organizations regardless of size, sector, market or profile. The development of the capacity and capability of the organizations’ managers has a fundamental impact on efficiency, effectiveness, morale and profitability of an organization. Monis (2006) stated that career development practices in the workplace help companies attract and retain high performing employees. The amount of career support received by employees is positively correlated to their stated intention to remain with their current employer.
According to Barnachea (2006), that many human resource professionals in the business industry have advocated the use of career development systems for improving an employee’s career motivation and commitment because of the purported link between career management, performance, developmental behavior and participation in developmental activities. In McClelland study, achievement-motivated people tend to more raises and are promoted faster because they are constantly trying to think better ways of doing things.

According to Mwanje (2010), there is a great importance to both the individual employee and the organization because there is interaction between the organization for which he/she works and the development of the organization through the employees’ career. An employee develops his/her career through a continuous acquisition of managerial or professional skills and experience which may bring about rewards and promotion.
In the Philippines, Quigley and Tymon Jr. (2006), considered the relationship between the internal motivation of people and their career development. Researchers believe the importance of personal motivation in career development has grown in recent years for a variety of reasons. For example, work roles have become more flexible, less well-defined, and subject to increasing change both within organizations and across the span of a career, which often involves multiple organizations. The agency admitted there is an ongoing brain drain. Weather forecasters related that the weather bureau’s employees have been leaving the country for greener pastures abroad since 2005. Thirty-two PAGASA employees have resigned in the last nine years and each year, one or two employees leave. This is due to the lack of motivation of employees and also the lack of opportunities available for them in their career.

Another situation in the Philippines is the Department of Labor and Employment (2013), where labour mobility consists of changes in the location of workers both across physical space (geographic mobility) and across a set of jobs (occupational mobility). According to A System to Motivate Sustainable Urban Mobility (2012), implementing a successful motivational program involves diminishing any and all demotivators while incorporating communication, empowerment, and recognition into the workplace. Creating a motivating work environment may seem like a huge commitment. Employee motivation is a proven method of building company loyalty while dramatically increasing productivity. Give people the right objectives, the right tools, and the right feedback and will create a focused, innovative, and outstanding workforce at every level, everyday.
In La Union, the Civil Service Commission as stated by Cameron (2013) has a development of career path and succession plan for officials and employees. These could be done through establishment of baseline information; update said information; provide or source out training and development opportunities; identification of HR training and development needs to upgrade employees’ knowledge, skills and attitudes in their present job and/or prepare them for higher responsibilities; recommend to heads of offices/supervisors to let their subordinates avail of said opportunities.

National Government Agencies will achieve their goals if their employees are assisted in achieving their personal goals. Motivation and career development are significant to the employees as well as the organization. Through this research undertaking, us, the future HR Managers will be able to understand the importance of recognizing the employees’ efforts and contributions in the organization in order for them to stay loyal and committed to their work. While for the workers, this research undertaking will help them realize their value in an organization and also realize the things they needed to do to help themselves grow along with the organization.

The aforecited situations and perceived positive effects of employee motivation and career development prompted the researchers to conduct this research.

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