MOTIVATION ANALYSIS 10
Theimportance of employee motivation cannot be gainsaid as far as theoverall sustainability and profitability of a business entity isconcerned in both the short-term and the long-term. While the termmotivation often has an abstract description, it may underline theforce that provides impetus to individual tendencies througharousing, directing and sustaining behavior to the achievement ofone’s goals. A large number of organizations that pay attention totheir motivation structures often recognize the crucial role thatemployees play with regard to business performance. Indeed, scholarshave acknowledged that the functions of employees are often afunction of their opportunity, motivation and capabilities. This isthe case for Apple Inc.
AppleInc was started on 1stApril 1976 by Steve Jobs, Ronald Wayne and Steve Wozniak in an effortto come up with and sell personal computers. Its incorporationoccurred in January the following year, with the company adopting thename Apple Inc in January of 2007 as a reflection of the shiftedfocus to consumer electronics. Underlining its success is the factthat the company is ranked the second largest information technologycompany in terms of revenue in the entire globe.
Apple’smission: The Company is committed to providing the best personalcomputing experience to consumers across the globe using its creativeinternet, hardware and software offerings (George & Jones, 2008).
WhatApple Inc Requires from its employees: In an effort to remain astrong competitor in the technology sector, Apple Inc. hasacknowledged the fundamental role that employees play in enhancingits competitiveness and long-term sustainability (George & Jones,2008). In essence, every form of innovation is considered crucialirrespective of its applicability in the current technologies or thebackground. Indeed, the opinions of the employees are valuedirrespective of the division to which the employees subscribe.
Companybackground and Statistics
Major products: Apple Inc primarily undertakes the design, development and sale of consumer electronics, personal computers, online services and computer services. Some of its consumer software may include iOS operating systems, OS X, iTunes media browser and other productivity suits (George & Jones, 2008).
Number of Employees: Recent research has indicated that Apple Inc has about 72,800 permanent full-time employees, as well as 3300 temporary full-time employees.
Annual Revenue: The company’s annual revenue in its global operations totaled $170 billion in 2013, thereby inducting the company into the echelons of the prestigious Fortune 500 list of company.
Competitive Environment: It may be difficult to determine the key competitors of Apple Inc as a result of the myriad of products that it offers in different markets. Nevertheless, Samsung Inc is its main competitor in the Smartphones market, while the dominance of iPads is challenged by Microsoft and Amazon. Further, Google Inc competes with Apple in varied fronts including smartphones (as a result of Motorola), Apple’s iCloud (Google Drive cloud service), as well as in wearable Tech product which is challenged by the Google Glass Product (George & Jones, 2008).
ObservableComponents of Apple Inc’s motivation Strategy
Competitive Remuneration Packages- Apple Inc has been offering its employees substantial remuneration packages so as to motivate them to stick to the company and undertake continuous innovation. It is worth noting that the company has fulfilled its employees’ physiological needs through setting its average salary to $108,483 per year. While this salary is said to ensure basic survival of employees, it is worth noting that it is way above those of other institutions and careers.
Rewards and recognition – Apple Inc has engaged in persistent recognition of exemplary performance and the reward of the same. The company has been known to award its executives through offering them a 3-5 percent recognition bonus on their salary for any of the employees who have demonstrated excellence in their works. Further, research has shown that employees are often provided with free iPhones not only as a benefit but also an effective motivator as it increases their impetus to go on working with the company after seeing the end product of their efforts.
Open creativity opportunity and training programs – Apple inc has been motivating its employees by creating increased opportunities through which they can take part in development and education programs. Indeed, more than 200000 employees have gone through these programs since 2008. Further, the company’s management set the employees free with regard to the devices that they were to come up with and only required them to develop devices that their consumers would have a hard time letting go of irrespective of their environments (Bradutanu, 2011). This, therefore, gave Apple Inc employees opportunities for growth, creativity and breaking the existing rules.
Analysisof Apple Inc’s motivation Strategy
Theories of motivation
Maslow’sHierarchy of needs was aimed at underlining the things that motivateindividuals. Maslow underlined the fact that individuals aremotivated to attain certain needs, which may be shown as hierarchicallevels in a pyramid. The levels include the psychological, safety,love, esteem and self actualization in ascending order. Every needhas to be met prior to ascending to the higher level growth needs.
AppleInc satisfies psychological needs by increasing the average salary ofthe employees. Further, the safety needs of employees is ensured byproviding safety equipment and taking them through intensive trainingfor the identification of hazards, while the social needs aresafeguarded by providing a better workplace to their employeesincluding enhanced worker-supervisor relationships, social networksand work groups.
Job Characteristics Model
Thismodel underlines the notion that certain fundamental jobcharacteristics determine the levels of the crucial psychologicalstates that, when combined, increase the internal work motivation ofworks (Herzberg, 2003). These psychological states includemeaningfulness of tasks, knowledge of the results of one’s work andincreased responsibility for job outcomes.
Itis well acknowledged that individuals in Apple Inc are not primarilyconcerned about restricting its employees to specific tasks rather itsimply gives them a wide berth for coming up with their bestinnovations even in instances where they do not fall within thecurrent technologies of the company (Bradutanu, 2011).
Motivation Factors Model
Thismodel underlines the fact that motivation is subject to variedorganizational, individual and external factors, with threats andincentives only being components of the entire process. Indeed,incentives and threats are fundamental power basis aimed at modifyingbehavior, belief and attitudes of employees. Extrinsic and intrinsicfactors play a key role in motivating employees.
AppleInc has particularly demonstrated this considering that it attractsand retains employees partly as a result of the benefits (bothexpected and non-performance related) that it offers includinginsurances and product discounts (Thompson & Mchugh, 2009).Further, employees are motivated by the outstanding creative culture,a factor that Steve Jobs underlined by stating that the innovativeculture becomes the gravitational force that pulls together all thecreative and bright people.
Strengths of the motivation strategy
Apple Inc creates an environment of persistent learning through eliminating restrictions regarding the type of objects that individuals should create. This allows employees to work on items and innovations about which they are passionate, in which case it often results to self-actualization (Armstrong, 2007).
The reward and recognition strategy is particularly crucial in enhancing the positive aspects of individuals in the long-term and short-term. This has been credited with the creation of an upbeat environment that is focused on enhancing success and excellence in the company.
The efforts of Apple Inc to pursue the hierarchy of needs is bound to put the company on a consistent path of excellence as the employees are motivated to reach to higher needs, thereby offering a considerably clear roadmap for personal growth (Bradutanu, 2011).
Weaknesses of the Motivation Strategies
The financial rewards that are provided to the employees are seen as only enhancing motivation in the short-term. This is especially considering the deficiency of any significant symbolic value for the efforts that the monetary rewards make (Armstrong, 2007).
The combination of needs and the determination of the levels of the same underline the notion that needs are comparable, which may not be the case for different employees. The needs of an individual may differ from those of another, which makes it difficult to determine what incentives to offer to employees (Thompson & Mchugh, 2009).
The deficiency of restrictions increases the breadth and vagueness of employee goals and expectations. As much as the goals of employees are tied to the company’s goals, the unattainable and unspecific nature of goals in the short-term may, in fact, work on the contrary as employees are not clear on how much would result in recognition or rewards.
First,it is imperative that Apple Inc comes up with clear and considerablysmaller milestones regarding the appropriate efforts for achievingits mission. These should be aligned to the SMART paradigm so as toenhance clarity of thought and effort.
Secondly,it is imperative that the rewards and recognition systems are notlimited to financial or non-financial incentives. Instead, thesystems should involve a combination of the two so as to incorporatethe symbolic aspect (Thompson & Mchugh, 2009). Customization ofrewards would go a long way in this respect.
Similarly,it is imperative that more leadership levels are established so as toallow for the graduation of employees to different levels. Thiswould, essentially, incentivize the employees to enhance theirexcellence so as to move to the subsequent positions, which oftenincorporate more satisfaction.
AppleInc has put in place crucial structures for enhancing the capacity ofthe employees to engage in persistent efforts to undertakeinnovation. Its reward and recognition structures are primarilyfocused towards achieving its mission, with rewards taking on afinancial nature. On the same note, the company’s reward systemsare aimed at satisfying different levels of needs as identified inthe Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.
Whilethe company may be doing quite well as far as motivating itsemployees is concerned, it is imperative that it takes advantage ofthe numerous opportunities for and strategies for enhancingperformance and motivating employees (Bradutanu, 2011). Increasingthe management positions and incorporating non-financial rewardswould go a long way in this respect.
Theexamination of the motivational structure of a public company hasequipped me with crucial knowledge regarding the type of informationthat I should be on the look-out for when determining the perfectplace for future career. This would be primarily determined by themotivation strategies that the company offers its employees, whichwould often determine the job satisfaction that I get from aparticular company.
Armstrong,M (2007). Ahandbook of Employee Reward Management and Practice.London: Kogan Page
Bradutanu,D. (2011) Identifying Motivational Factors within a Multinationalcompany.  ACTAUNIVERSITATIS DANUBIUS ,7 (4)
Burrows,P. (2004). The Seeds of Apple’s Innovation. BusinessWeek.
George,J & Jones, G (2008). Understandingand Managing Organizational Behavior.New Jersey: Pearson Education, Inc.
Herzberg,F. (2003). One More Time: How Do you Motivate employees?’ HarvardBusiness Review,vol. 81, No. 1. Pp- 87-96.
Thompson,P. & Mchugh, D. (2009). Workorganizations.Basingstoke: PalgraveMacmillan.