WORKPLACEMOTIVATION: THEORY X AND THEORY Y
Motivationof once employees is a very insignificant aspect of businessoperations for any organization. Motivation refers to an internaldrive that thrusts an individual to accomplish a given obligation oract in a particular way. Motivation can also refer tothedetermination to toil at a certain degree of effort (Gitman andMcDaniel, 2008). Motivation model emerges, in contemporary models,out of expectation, values, targets and goals. Motivation amongstpeople significantly varies. Since motivation emanates from within,administrators should nurture and support the motivation possessed bytheir employees. Some employees develop great satisfaction fromperforming their assigned duties and consequently take pride in theirachievements whereas others view their work as a burden and simply doit for survival sake (Fargus, 2000). As such, there is great need tounderstand and appreciate each and every employee’s needs. Managershave a responsibility to keep their employees motivated by all meanspossible since an employee is the greatest asset that a companyposses. It determines their performance and the general performanceof an organization. This essay looks at motivation theories X and Yand their importance in employee motivation.
Motivatingan employee ensures the enriching the particular worker. It,therefore, provides aninspirational and essentially valuableapproach by which personnel willingly and enthusiastically improveperformance. The management approach towards its employee for acement factory I used to work for was relatively friendly andenriching. The manufacturing company ensured that members of staffare enriched and, therefore, endeavor to improve their jobproductivity. The company ensured they promoted job security amongstits employees by creating a long-standing employment rapport. It wasfurther enhanced by the guarantee of retirement`s benefits when anemployee reached the retirement age among other benefits such asmedical benefit, sick leave pay, and paid vacation leave. Thesebenefits were competitive in the industry which made employees feelmotivated.
Thecompany also had friendly policies that promoted the treatment ofemployees as partners. Each and every employee was empowered to makedecisions as well as take any necessary actions for the success ofthe plant. Bonus and incentives were other motivating strategies thecompany employed (Gitman and McDaniel, 2008). The bonus andincentives ensured a gain-sharing or profit-sharing plan where boththe workers and the employer enjoyed the benefits accrued.Furthermore, the company had no objection for the formation of aworkers` union whose sole responsibility was topromote better paypackage and welfare of the plant’s employees. Such a democraticwork environment promotes the ideology that the company’smanagement favored the protection of employees’ rights (Fargus,2000).
Inaddition, the company developed a well-structured career advancementprogram for all its employees. Ten percent of the employeesbenefitted in this program annually. Some got better certification ontheir skills while others advanced their education levels.Accompanying the career advancement program was the increase of oncesalary and a promotion to a higher job grade. At the closure of everyfiscal year, the cement manufacturing company held a thanksgivingceremony where all stakeholders were recognized and appreciated fortheir input in the success of the fiscal year.
Accordingto McGregor, Theory X assumes that employees are innatelyunenthusiastic and avoid duties and obligations. Such kind ofcharacter demands an authoritarian strict management style theadministration must keenly get involved for tasks to be accomplished.According to theory X, employees have a general tendency of dislikingwork and therefore avoid responsibility (Podmoroff, 2005). Theemployees require control and direction in order to deliver on theirmandate. Every step requires supervision as well as direction. Inaddition, they have to be enticed to yield results otherwise theylack ambition to work. The cement plant involves series of processingstages with requires real time supervision in order to ensure smoothoperations. The company can, therefore, be said to be the X-typeorganization. It had a well-structured organization chart thatexplicitly indicated the protocols governing the company. Given theenormous processing nature of the plant, the company installedmanagers and supervisors at every control to smooth running ofoperations (Gitman and McDaniel, 2008). This is purposely directedtowards motivating employees described by McGregor’s Theory X.
Onthe other hand, McGregor expound Theory Y as a participativemanagement style that has aspects of decentralization. According tohim, Theory Y leadership has an assumption that employees aredelighted to work, are creative and self-motivated. Employees intheory Y take work as a normal routine of life, and theyimaginatively solve work-related problems. Such employees takeresponsibility without much supervision and require minimalsupervision. Theory Y management style promotes holisticdecision-making strategy, where workers at the lower levels take partin responsibility and decision making (Podmoroff, 2005). Employees inthis theory feel as part of the company and do everything in theirjurisdiction to enhance the company’s performance.
DouglasMcGregor asserts that the motivation can only occur at the securityand physiological levels of Maslow`s hierarchy of needs. To him,most people are self-centered and gullible. In essence, theory xassumes that the main basis for employee motivation is financialbenefits, with security following in second. The cement plant, forinstance, banked on rewarding its employees with monetary rewards soas to gratify worker`s lower level desires. Theory Y leadershipmodel gratifies the higher level desires of self-actualization andself-esteem which are persistent needs (Gitman and McDaniel, 2008).The company additionally employed this model considering that part ofits workforce had desires of self-fulfillment. Under this model, thecompany realigned departmental goals by using employee`s individualdesires for actualization as a motivator.
Motivationis an important concept for any industry since replacing a member ofstaff is costly compared to retaining one. It’s important to notethat workers like to feel respected and needed and to ensure theirmeans they will stay longer. The cement factory, therefore, employeda mixture of both Theory Y and Theory X motivation strategies eventhough Theory Y took a larger part. Even though, Theory X managementstyle is lower compared to other motivating models, it’s importantin large scale production operation such as the cement manufacturingcompany (Lauby, 2005). Theory Y ideologies are widely embraced bytypes of organization that value and encourage participation. Thecement plant, therefore, employed its use in order to motivate itsworkforce.
Fargus,P. (2000). Measuringand improving employee motivation.London: Financial Times Prentice Hall.
Gitman,L. J., & McDaniel, C. D. (2008). Thefuture of business: The essentials.Mason, OH: Thomson South-Western.
Lauby,S. J. (2005). Motivatingemployees.Alexandria, Va: ASTD Press.
Podmoroff,D. (2005). 365ways to motivate and reward your employees every day– with little orno money.Ocala, Fla: Atlantic Pub. Group.