Impact motivation on employee performance Abstract


Impact motivation on employee performance


The impact of employee motivation on their productivity has been atopic of research for psychologists in the business management field.This paper set to investigate the impact of employee motivation onjob performance. The study was based on a theoretical frameworkcomprised of content theories, namely the Drive Theory of Motivation,Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, and the Incentive Theory ofMotivation. The research was conducted using a quantitative approach.The researcher used a sample of 30 participants, who comprised of 20employees and 10 respondents 10 in management positions. TheTwo-Factor Theory was used to establish the impact between motivationand job performance. From the findings, the paper established thatthere is a positive association between employee motivation and jobperformance. However, the techniques used to recognize, acknowledge,motivate and reward employees have different impacts on differentemployees, based mainly on individuals’ preferences and personalexpectations.


Abstract 2

List of Figures: 6

List of Tables: 6

List of Graphs: 6


1.1 Introduction 8

1.2 Background of the problem 8

1.3 Statement of the problem 9

1.4 Research questions and objectives. 10

1.5 Scope of the study 10

1.6 Theoretical framework 11

1.7 Justification of study 12


2.1 Introduction 13

2.2 Types of motivation 13

2.2.1 Extrinsic motivation 13

2.2.2 Intrinsic motivation 14

2.3 Theories of motivation 14

2.3.1 Maslow’s theory of motivation 14

2.3.2 McGregor theory XY 15

2.3.3 Herzberg Theory 15

2.4 Concept of employee motivation 16

2.5 Idea of job performance 17

2.6 Employee motivation and job performance 18

2.7 Employee motivation techniques 18

2.8 Prioritizing motivation in organizations 19

2.9 Factors enhancing employee performance 21

2.91 Summary of literature review 22


3.1 Introduction 23

3.2 Research design 23

3.3 Data collection 24

3.4 Participants 24

3.5 Limitations and Delimitations 25

3.6 Ethical concerns 25

3.7 Summary 26


4.1 Introduction 27

4.2 Characteristics of the respondents 27

4.3 Types of motivation incentives received 27

4.4 Factors that influence performance 28

4.5 Influence of Incentives 30

4.6 Recognition for work done 30

4.7 Reward for good performance 32

4.8 Preference for monetary and non-monetary rewards. 32

4.9 Response from the employers 34

4.9.1 Correlation between motivation and performance 36


5.1 Introduction 37

5.2 Characteristics of the respondents 37

5.3 Types of motivation and incentives 38

5.4 Factors influencing employee performance 38

5.5 Recognition and motivation 39

5.6 Rewards: Monetary and non-monetary rewards 40

5.7 Importance of motivation 41


6.1 Conclusion 44

6.2 Recommendations 46

Bibliography: 48


Appendix 1: Questionnaire 56

Appendix 2: Figures 61

Appendix 3: Tables 62

Appendix 4: Graphs 64

List of Figures:

Figure 1: Factors that influence employee performance. 25

Figure 2: Reward for good performance. 28

List of Tables:

Table 1: Types of incentives that the employee identified.

Table 2: Frequency of motivation.

Table 3: Monetary and non-monetary rewards.

Table 4: Perceived influence of motivation.

Table 5: Pearson correlation sig. {2 tailed} with N= 30 Participants.

List of Graphs:

Graph 1: How the employees value motivation at work.

Graph 2: Recognition for work done.

Graph 3: Monetary reward in percentage.

Graph 4: Non-monetary reward in percentage.


Every organization aims at getting the most out of its employees soas to stay profitable and highly competitive in the industry. Thereare a number of strategies that organizations have used to ensurethat their employees give the maximum, and that their output issufficiently efficient to drive profitability and competitiveness.However, all organizations do not use the same techniques to achievethis. While some managers and organizational leaders opt fortraditional methods such as reinforcement of the human resources andoutsourcing, many have resorted to modern techniques to achievebetter results (Rainlall, 2004). Over the past few decades, scholarshave been studying the technique of employee motivation to drive theoutput of the employees. Many organizations have used this techniquewith the hope that they will improve the efficiency of their humanresources, with the general objective of improving the organization’sproductivity. This paper investigates the impact of motivation onemployee performance.

1.2 Background of theproblem

According to the view of psychologists and scholars, motivation isthe determiner of how an individual does a task. Regardless, therehave been different interpretations of motivation. Some scholars holdthe opinion that motivation is the driving force that compels someoneto carry out a certain task, and it can be internal or external(Lauby, 2005). The implication is that motivation can be self-drivenor inspired by an outside force. At the same time, Kovjanic et al.(2012) assert that self-motivation can be limited in terms of skillsand abilities to carry out certain tasks, which implies that theexternal force has to come into play to influence effectivemotivation. This is where the management and leadership oforganizations come into play as far as employee motivation isconcerned.

Thereare many theories that assess the issue of employee motivation. Forinstance, the Instinct Theory of Motivation implicates thatindividuals carry out actions, not out of their own will, but becausethey have been programmed to (Petri and Govern, 2012). However, theshortcoming of the theory is that it is only used to explainbehavior. On the other hand, the Incentive Theory of Motivation holdsthat external factors motivate individuals as they carry outactivities (Bernstein, 2013). For instance, people wake up daily andgo to work because they are motivated by reasons such as survival,ambition and career success. These, and other theories, have formedthe foundation for in-depth studies to understand the phenomena ofemployee motivation and work performance.

1.3 Statement of theproblem

In the modern highly competitive organizational environment,companies are in the fight to stay in the frontline in terms ofprofitability and competition. As such, it is up to the management toensure that they sufficiently motivate their employees and get thebest out of them, if possible, more than the competitors do. However,the biggest challenge is that the managements face is lack of enoughinformation to evaluate the performance of their employees, and howmotivation drives the same. To maintain a highly productiveworkforce, Nevid (2011) asserts that it is imperative fororganizations to assess the impact of motivation on the employees’performance. This involves evaluation of the techniques that they useto drive motivation, finding out new ways of motivation theemployees, determine the response of the employees to the motivationtechniques that the organizations use, measuring organizationalproductivity as influenced by motivation and putting employeemotivation as a key organizational priority.

1.4 Researchquestions and objectives.

Thefollowing are the questions that guided the study: –

  1. What is the impact of motivation on the employees’ performance?

  2. How can employees be motivated at work?

  3. How do commitment and motivation be related to work performance?

  4. How is productivity improved through motivation?

  5. How can motivation be considered as an objective of an organization?

Giventhe research questions posed above, the objectives of the were to: –

  1. To demonstrate the impact of motivation on the employees’ performance.

  2. To demonstrate how employee can be motivated at work

  3. To establish the relationship between commitment and motivation, and work performance.

  4. To show how productivity can be improved through motivation.

  5. To show how motivation can be considered as an objective of an organization.

1.5 Scope of thestudy

The study covered 30 employees from both the public and privatesectors. While investigating the nature of their work and theirperceived output, the study also focused on internal and externalforces that influence their performance. At the same time, theresearcher was interested in investigating the implication is ofdifferent theories of motivation and employee performance, anddetermining the extent of their application in the modern dayorganizational environment. The study was limited to establishing thenature of employee motivation and their relative performance. Assuch, the findings were meant to advise employers on the impact ofemployee motivation on their performance.

1.6 Theoreticalframework

The research was guided by three theories. The first one was theDrive Theory of Motivation. Clark Hull. A renowned psychologist, isacknowledged for developing this theory in the 1940s, andpopularizing it in the 1950s (Weiner, 2013). According to Hull, thereduction of drives is the primary force behind motivation. Thistheory holds that people are motivated to carry out certain tasks toavoid consequences of not having to do them. The theory is useful inexplaining certain characteristics that are highly associated withbiological components, such as internal satisfaction. The secondtheory is the Maslow Hierarchy of Needs. This theory was developed byAbraham Maslow, and is used to present motivation at different levels(Block, 2011). According to this theory, people are motivated firstto fulfill their biological needs, which are food and shelter.Secondary needs such as safety, self-esteem and love are follow. Thedesire to achieve one’s individual potential therefore comes afterthe primary needs have been met. The third theory is the IncentiveTheory of Motivation. According to this theory, people are motivatedto carry out activities because of the external rewards they willreceive. Regardless, given that there are many theories that addressthe phenomena of individual motivation, they all offer greatunderstanding of the forces that drive people to carry outactivities.

1.7 Justification of study

Overthe past few decades, many employers have failed to meet theindustrial expectations, particularly as pertains to productivity.Productivity is a prerequisite to achieving organizationalprofitability and sufficient competitiveness. Johnson and Yang (2010)attribute this observation to the lack of well-motivated employees,who are the key behind organizational performance, both business-wiseand financially. The findings from this research paper will serve asa policy-shaping document to help the employers, both in the publicand private sector, to get the best out of their employees, throughmotivation. Similarly, the research will help scholars to identifythe factors behind inadequate employee motivation, as well as toextend the literature on human resource management.


Scholars have put effort to understand the concepts of motivation,and its resultant impact on the performance of employees. Whileconsiderable research has concentrated on the methods thatorganizations have used to motivate the employees, a good number ofstudies have explored the determinants of employee performance, asrelated to the motivation activities. In light of this, concretestudies have methodically and systematically put the concept ofemployee motivation in perspective, which is the foundation behindthe numerous strategies that leading organizations have put in place.Regardless, not every aspect of employee motivation and jobperformance have been addressed, which necessitates further studiesto be conducted to extensively investigate the topic. Types ofmotivation and existing theories will be recapped, which help toexplain the concept of motivation. This section presents some of thekey findings from prior studies that have addressed the topic. Forthe purpose of the study, the researcher reviewed peer-reviewed andpublished journal articles, as well as scholarly material such asreports and books.

2.2 Types ofmotivation2.2.1 Extrinsicmotivation

Gillet, Vallerand and Lafreniere (2012) describe extrinsic motivationas the behavior that is driven by external rewards. In organizations,these rewards may come in the form of money and praise. According toGillet et al. (2012), extrinsic motivation comes from outside theindividual. In modern organizations, the external stimulator ofextrinsic motivation are the actions by the employers, who wish tomotivate their employees to increase their input so to better theiroutput. Reiss (2012) explains that extrinsic motivation may come interms of money, which is a tangible form, or psychological praise,which is an intangible form. Research by Reiss (2012) indicates thatmost employers are likely to use extrinsic motivation to boost themorale of their employers, and this has been working positively interms of job performance.

2.2.2 Intrinsicmotivation

Intrinsicmotivation is the behavior that is driven by internal rewards.According to Gillet et al. (2012), when an individual isintrinsically motivated, they are likely to engage on activities thatintrinsically rewards them. A study by Rogstadius et al. (2011)indicates that when an individual is awarded an external reward foran internally rewarding activity, the results is most likely to benegative. As Reiss (2012) explains, intrinsic motivation is takingactions for the sake of internal enjoyment. In modern organizations,some employees are intrinsically motivated by activities such as paidholidays and movie going, which some employers use to boost theirperformance psychologically. However, Rogstadius et al. (2011)asserts that this form of motivation has proven to be a balancingact, given that the employees may get carried by the same and diverttheir focus from their duties.

2.3 Theories ofmotivation 2.3.1 Maslow’stheory of motivation

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory is one of the most widelyapplied in psychological motivation. The needs are presented in apyramid form, which is comprised of psychological needs, safetyneeds, social needs, esteem needs, and at the highest level,self-actualization needs (Maslow, 2013). The theory has psychologicalsubstance that covers the needs of a person from a social circleperspective. According to Maslow (2013), the needs motivate a personto attain self-fulfillment. For this reason, Noltemeter et al. (2012)relates Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory to intrinsicmotivations. Moreover, Maslow (2013) asserts that if the lower levelneeds are not sufficiently met, the individual may fail to achievethose in higher levels.

2.3.2 McGregor theoryXY

DouglasMcGregor developed the XY theory, which unlike the other theories inemployee motivation, draws heavily from the management input (Ghuman,2010). According to him, there are two contrasting theories thatexplain the motivation of employees. The theory X describes employeesto do not like work and avoid it, lack ambition, however, desiresecurity. From a management perspective, the theory holds thatorganizational achievement can only be realized when the leadershipasserts coercion, control and punishment. According to the theory Y,employees consider effort as play, they do not dislike work and theyseek responsibility. Ghuman (2010) says that the management thatapplies this theory are supposed to create a working environment thatcan nurture development, and that organizational success is achievedthrough rewards of various kinds.

2.3.3 Herzberg Theory

This theory is associated with Fredrick Herzberg, who was a clinicalpsychologists and consultant for job enrichment (Malik and Naeem,2013). He was the first psychologists to demonstrate thatsatisfaction and dissatisfaction are influenced by various factors.He then developed a theory to note the factors that influenceemployee satisfaction and dissatisfaction, which psychologists andjob consultants use to develop their human resources. According tothe theory, the employers have the obligation of noting the causes ofdissatisfaction, which are also known as hygiene factors (Miner,2015). Upon doing this, the employers create satisfaction, whichamong other things, involves providing opportunities for achievementand recognizing the contribution of each person (Malik and Naeem,2013). Employers have applied this theory to improve the jobenvironment and to help employees increase their output.

2.4 Concept ofemployee motivation

In human psychology and business, the term motivation was coinedtowards the end of the 19th Century (Reeve, 2014).According to the time’s psychologists, motivation was considered as“an entity that compelled action” (Forgas, Williams and Laham,2005). Later psychologists defined motivation as “the psychologicalprocess that gives behavior purpose and direction” (Kreitner andCassidy, 2012). This formed the ground for perceiving motivation asan entity concerned with internal and external forces that influencean individual’s decision to take action. Based on this perception,Griffin and Morrhead (2011) assert that “motivation is the degreeto which an individual wants and decides to take up certainbehaviors.”

According to Herzberg, the first question that employees need to askis motive behind motivating the employees (Dartey and Amoako, 2011).While many researchers and scholars have different opinions as towhat drives the employers to motivate the employees, they have uniqueperceptions of the drive behind the same. Smith (1994) argues that itis because the companies need to survive, while Amabile (1994) saysthat it is because the employees are the survival line for the nextcentury of business (Vinarski-Peretz, Binyamin and Carmeli, 2011).

Perhaps the biggest contributors to the concept of motivation wereHerzberg and Maslow (Shearer, 2011). Maslow, by developing theTwo-Factor Theory, distinguished motivators and human biologicalfactors. In this regard, motivators influence the individual’sperception and response towards work and responsibility. TheTwo-Factor Theory is closely related to Maslow’s theory ofmotivation (Hyun and Oh, 2011). According to Maslow’s theory, thereare basic higher-order and low-order needs that influence motivation.These are psychology, love, esteem, safety and self-realization.

2.5 Idea of jobperformance

In modern organizations, Lich, Lepine and Crawford (2010) assert thatjob performance includes individual and collective performance.However, many managers are more interested in individual performance,as the individual employees are the most important building unit ofthe entire organization. In this regard, Le et al. (2011) say that anemployee is said to be of high performance when he or sheaccomplishes tasks to satisfaction. However, job performance cannotbe generalized, as far as employees are concerned. In this regard,studies have addressed the issue of job performance on three majorcontexts, which are contextual performance, task performance andadaptive performance (Christian, Garza and Slaughter, 2011, Shoss,Witt and Vera, 2012 andGriffin, Parker and Mason, 2010).

Taskperformance addresses the individual’s accomplishments towardsimproving organizational performance (Denovish and Greendge, 2010).This comprises of actions that an organization has included as partof the technical core and specified in job descriptions. According toGruman and Saks (2011), these are tasks that help to utilizeresources efficiently and contribute to the growth of theorganization. Contextual performance, on the other hand, is theability of the employee to go beyond what is expected of them, anddeliver in a way that does not necessarily contribute to theorganization’s performance (Inness et al. (2010). For this reason,contextual performance has been largely overlooked by many employees.Finally, adaptive performance is the ability of the employees tooptimize their output under the influence of external forces (Shoss,Witt and Vera, 2012). This, therefore, covers the employees’flexibility and proficiency in their respective duties.

2.6 Employeemotivation and job performance

According to Rogers (2013), the human relations theory is the sourceof the viewpoint that employee motivation influences better jobperformance. However, earlier studies were not able to figurativelyestablish the connection between the two. Regardless, the study byDanish and Usman (2010), which was an empirical study establishedthat there is a connection between motivating the employees andgetting the best out of them in terms of performance. According tothe findings of the research, the authors indicated that therelationship is found in the individual overall job satisfaction andthe drive to help the organization to achieve its objectives.Skudiene and Auruskeviciene’s study (2012) complements thesefindings, by asserting that when particular job characteristics areattained at certain organizations, the employees are most likely toincrease their performance in terms of productivity and output.

However, Tan and Waheed (2011) argue that the exact relationshipbetween motivation and job performance is not a straight-forwardassumption. According to this argument, the relationship is circular,and that high performance is what influences motivation. In thisregard, employees of highly performing organizations will be bettersatisfied with their jobs than employees of organizations that arenot highly performing. This assertion is based on intrinsic factors,which hold that making considerable changes to the extrinsic factorsdoes not necessarily result in better job performance. Regardless,according to Nahrgang, Morgeson and Hofmann (2011), employeeperformance is a phenomenon that cannot be separated from motivation.

2.7 Employeemotivation techniques

Cerasoli, Nicklin and Ford (2014) say that there are two major formsof employee motivation that many organizations employ. These areintrinsic and extrinsic motivation techniques. According to Cho andPerry (2012), employees are intrinsically motivated when they areafter satisfaction and enjoyment. On the other hand, the employeesare extrinsically motivated when they carry out activities gearedtowards attaining certain goals besides those associated with thework they are doing. Ali et al. (2011) categorized money and verbalreinforcements as some of the main aspects of extrinsic motivation.On the other hand, extrinsic motivation is mediated internally.Regardless of the method that employers use, Cadwallader et al.(2010) assert that both techniques can be balanced to yield positiveorganizational growth through increased employee performance.

Nevertheless, Reiss (2012) is of the opinion that intrinsic andextrinsic motivators work out variably. Employers are attracteddifferently to the two paradigms at different levels, with differentinterests in the outcomes of both intrinsic and extrinsic motivation.In their research, Coelho, Augusto and Lages (2011) explained thatemployees that have high affinity for intrinsic motivation have abetter ability to control their behaviors. As such, Pierece et al.(2012) conclude that such individuals do not necessarily requireincentives such as monetary rewards to accomplish tasks. The oppositeapplies for employees that have a high affinity for extrinsicmotivation. As such, when choosing the kind of motivation for anorganization, Pinder (2014) advises that employers have to pay keenattention to the nature of tasks, engagements, goals, and mostimportantly, the individualism of the employees.

2.8 Prioritizingmotivation in organizations

According to Paarlberg and Lavigna (2010), it is the responsibilityof the management of every organization to determine the factors thatmotivate their employees, and to ensure that they priorities them.Considering the fact that all employees have different personalities,it is an extra task for the management to determine the individualpreferences and to put measures in place that a majority of theworkforce is well motivated (Hafiza et al., 2011). In this regard,Carter (2013) identifies the content theories, which are formulatedbased on the fact that there are different variables that influencethe level of individual job satisfactions. Maslow and Herzberg’stheories fall under the category of content theories (Sahoo, Sahooand Das, 2011). The second category of theories that addressindividual job satisfaction trends are the process theories. Thefundamental tenet of this category of theories is that internal andexternal factors influence job satisfaction. By evaluating andinvestigating these factors, employers are in a position ofdetermining the most applicable factors in individual jobsatisfaction amongst the employees.

While applying the theories of employee satisfaction to determine thetechniques that apply effectively to different employees, Bahadori,Babaei and Mehrabian (2013) conducted a quantitative study. In thisstudy, the researchers sought to establish the prioritization offactors that influence job motivation in the military. They used theAnalytical Hierarchy Process with the objective of identifying thesefactors and putting them in perspective. According to the results,job security, job satisfaction were the leading factors. Thesecondary factors were the organizational policy of the military, andthe social relations among the soldiers. In conclusion, the researchremarked that prioritizing the primary needs was necessary, which wasto be followed by the secondary needs. This research demonstrates theapplication of intrinsic and extrinsic satisfaction at organizationallevel, both which have different outcomes as far as productivity areconcerned. Echoing the findings of the study by Bahadori et al.(2013), Rich, Lepine and Crawford (2010) assert that to achievepredefined goals, organizations need to have an inclusive picture ofjob satisfaction, and be able to prioritize categorically the factorsthat influence employee motivation.

2.9 Factors enhancingemployee performance

Applying the theories on employee performance, scholars haveidentified a number of factors that influence the performance of theemployees. These factors are intrinsically associated with themotivational activities that the organizations have applied.According to Diefendorff and Chandler (2011) despite having deepknowledge on motivational techniques geared towards improving theiremployees’ performance, there are unique challenges facilitated bythe dynamic nature of modern organizational structuring. In cognizantof the factors identified earlier, Bal et al. (2012) asserts thatpersonal recognition, through the identification of individual skillsand knowledge, significantly influences the actions taken byemployers to motivate their employees. As such, the employers have toidentify the individual capabilities of the employees, and motivatethem to improve their personal productivity.

Similarly, whilst employing different motivation techniques, Kinickiat al. (2014) assert that employers have to be clear about the rolesthat the employees take up, and what the organizations expect ofthem. This measure is important, as it helps the employees not toindulge in motivational activities that fall out of context. In theirresearch, Zhang and Bartol (2010) assert that the employers have tobe conscious of their organizations’ work environment and culture.By doing this, they will be in position to effectively initiatemotivational activities that will significantly influenceproductivity. Without disputing the factors that influence themotivational activities and their required outcomes, Johnson and Yang(2010) asserts that the employers’ attitudes play a key role indetermining the motivational activities’ impact on employeeperformance. As such, the employers have to ensure that they maintaina positive attitude towards the employees, which according to Pinder(2014), is determined by the organizational culture. Finally,Linnenluecke and Griffith (2010) are of the opinion that having theright tools and resources will help organizations to boost theiremployees’ performances through different motivation activities.

2.91 Summary ofliterature review

The literature reviewed in this section has collectively highlightedthe association between employee motivation and job performance. Byintegrating the theories of motivation as advanced by earlypsychologists, the authors have established that motivation takesdifferent perspectives, and the outcomes depend on the execution ofthe strategies. In light of this, different organizations havedifferent ways of motivating their employees, depending on thedesired outcomes. Moreover, the literature has demonstrated that thetheories of motivation can be put into practice in reality, however,after careful consideration of factors such as motivation prioritiesand organizational objectives. However, there is a lack of adequateliterature on the perception of employee motivational andperformance, from the employer and employee perspectives. Having thisknowledge will help researchers and scholars to determine, withhigher degrees of accuracy, the impact of motivation on employeeperformance. The next section of this discourse outlines themethodology that the researcher used to study this topic.

CHAPTER 3: METHODOLOGY3.1 Introduction

This section outlines the methodology that the researcher applied inthe study. In acknowledgment of the nature of the study, theresearcher had to make a decision between employing the two leadingbusiness research approaches, which are qualitative and quantitativestudies. Three considerations guided the choice of methodology.First, the study was based on investigating the reaction of theemployees towards various motivation techniques that their respectiveorganizations used. Secondly, the researcher had established that theimpact of motivation could be studied using three major theories ofindividual motivation, which were outlined in the first chapter.Finally, the research sample was clearly defined and limited. Inrealization of this, the researcher settled on a quantitativeapproach to study the topic.

3.2 Research design

In business research, quantitative research design has been describedas one of the best approaches for collecting information to explainobservations. It is a logical and data-led approach which helps theinvestigators to measure the perceptions of the population from astatistical and numerical standpoint (Pickard, 2012). Thequantitative research method involved use of figures, which wererepresented in tables, graphs and charts. The researcher used thesefigures to represent the correlation between employee motivation andtheir performance. One of the main advantages of this research designis that it enables the researcher to collect large amount so data andorganize it easily into reports and analyses. The main datacollection tools for the quantitative research methodology arequestionnaires and surveys. For the purpose of the study, theresearcher used structured questionnaires. The questionnairecontained open-ended and closed-ended questions.

3.3 Data collection

As identified above, the researcher used structured questionnaires togather the feelings and opinions of the participants as regards tomotivation and employee performance. The first step that was takenwas preparing the questions and printing them on paper media.Following this, the researcher identified the participants, andcontacted them appropriately. The participants were made aware of thenature of research and the roles that they would play, which wasprimarily providing primary data. The researcher, through theresearch assistants, distributed the questionnaires to theparticipants. Each participant was given up to a period of one weekto respond to the questions and submit them. Upon the collection ofthe results, the researcher sorted the questionnaires to two maincategories. The first category comprised of responses obtained fromparticipants that occupied roles of management and leadership withintheir respective organizations. The second category comprised of theparticipants who were employees in the organizations that they wererepresenting.

3.4 Participants

Therewas a total of 30 participants. 20 of these were employees, while therest were in the positions of management. An inclusion criterion wasthat all the participants had worked at their respectiveorganizations for a period of less not less than four years. Theexclusion criteria were potential participants who had not been intheir respective organizations for a period of less than five years.

3.5 Limitations and Delimitations

One of the major limitations of the study is that the researcherdepended on the autonomous understanding and perception of motivationof the research participants. As such, this nature of self-reportedinformation means that the researcher had little control over theaccuracy and validity of the response. Secondly, the administrationof structured questions in this kind of study posed a technicalbarrier to the collection of non-biased opinions. By administeringstructured questions, it is possible that the researcher may haveunintentionally alienated the respondents’ thinking, and therefore,their response. However, to counter these limitations, the researcherfactored the inclusion and exclusion criteria, as explained earlier.This was a measure to ensure that the research used the services ofwell-knowledgeable participants, who possessed a concreteinterpretation of the research’s general objectives. Similarly, theresearch engaged each participant on and individual level to explainto them the kind of information that was required and how it would beused to study the topic.

3.6 Ethical concerns

The researcher embarked on obtaining permission to carry out theresearch by filling out the Newham University Center Ethical ApprovalForm. This form is required by all students and staff who intend tocarry out research that involves the gathering and processing ofprimary data that involves human participants. Within the form, theresearcher gave information about the nature of the research, andoverall information about the participants. Alongside the informationabout the research background and objectives, the researchersubmitted a participant consent form. This form was filled to let theregulator know that the participants were legally allowed to takepart in the research, and they were individually fit, physically andmentally, to participate. The final ethical concern was signing thedeclaration for approval of the research the and obtaining thepermission to carry on the activity.

3.7 Summary

The researcher chose the quantitative approach to conduct theresearch. This decision was made based on the nature of study, theparticipants and the scope of research. Using the quantitativeapproach, the researcher used questionnaires as data collectioninstruments. The questions were both open-ended and closed-ended. Theresearch population comprised of 30 voluntary participants, both fromthe private and public sectors. Two-thirds of the participants wereemployees, while the rest were in the management and leadershippositions. The researcher obtained permission to conduct the researchfrom Newham University Center. The next topic outlines the results ofthe research study.

CHAPTER 4: RESULTS4.1 Introduction

This section presents the results of the field study that theresearcher conducted. The data collection exercise took up to twoweeks, during which the researcher collected the information from theparticipants. Having collected the questionnaires, the researcherfiltered them into two categories. The first category comprised ofthe questionnaires that were filled by employees, while the secondcategory comprised of the questionnaires that were filled by thoseoccupying managerial and leadership positions in their respectivecompanies.

4.2 Characteristicsof the respondents

21 of the respondents were male, while 9 were female. This disparityis a significant suggestion that the decisions and policies relatedto motivation have a high probability to be skewed towards theinterests of the male participants. Academically, 85% of therespondents had attained a college degree, while 15 percent hadattained post-graduate certification. Demographically, the biggestpercentage of the respondents were between the age of 26 and 35.Finally, 20 respondents were employees in their respectiveorganizations, while the rest were in the management position.However, the researcher had controlled this statistic while selectingthe participants.

4.3 Types ofmotivation incentives received

The employees identified both monetary and non-monetary incentives attheir respective places of work. According to 60% of the respondents,these incentives helped them to improve their job delivery.Similarly, the respondents identified different some specific typesof incentives, which they listed as factors that motivated to helpthem improve their performance at work. The table below is arepresentation of the types of incentives that the employees valuedat their places of work.

Type of incentive



Medical leaves






Paid leaves



Property loans



Table1: Types of incentives that the employee identified.

4.4 Factors thatinfluence performance

The researcher sought to establish the factors that motivated theemployee at work, hence improving their performance. For presentationpurposes, the researcher defined these factors to includeorganizational factors, type of leadership and the generalassociation between the workers and the management. The diagram belowis a representation of these factors.

Figure1: Factors that influence employee performance.

From the table above, 20% of the employees said that yearly bonusesinfluenced their performance, 22% said it was due to monetaryfactors, 45% said it was staff development factors, while 13% said itwas environmental factors.

The respondents were asked to given their opinion on how much theythought motivation was important to them as employees. According tothe results, 80% were very positive, while 20% thought it was quitesignificant. The graph below presents the results.

Graph1: How the employees value motivation at work.

4.5 Influence ofIncentives

The researcher sought to establish the extent to which the incentivesthat the employee received from their employers had influenced theirperformance. From the response, 65% of the respondent strongly feltthat the incentives had helped to improve their performance, while35% felt that it had little or no significant influence on theirperformance.

Moreover, the researcher sought to establish the confidence that theemployees had in their respective employers’ motivation techniques.45% agreed that they were satisfied with the efforts, while 55% feltthat the efforts were not sufficient.

4.6 Recognition forwork done

The researcher sought to establish the best way that the employeeswould feel appreciated for their work. According to Bradler et al.(2013), recognition for work done is a way of motivating theemployees internally, which serves to provide a sense ofappreciation. The results are presented in the graph below.

Graph2: Recognition for work done.

From the result, a majority, representing 21%, chose time-off withpay. 19% settled with cash handoffs, while 16% chose employee awards.14% of the respondents were comfortable with employee-of-the monthaward, the same number as those chose opportunity to grow. 9% of therespondents liked to have a certificate of outstanding service, while4% settled with verbal appreciation. The least was 3%, who were forthank you notes.

4.7 Reward for good performance

The researcher sought to establish the mode of reward that theemployees preferred. The results are presented in the figure below.

Figure2: Reward for good performance.

From the results, 85% of the respondents preferred monetary rewards.13% settled with job promotion, while 2% preferred recognition.

4.8 Preference formonetary and non-monetary rewards.

The researcher sought to establish the participants’ preference formonetary and non-monetary rewards. Given that there are several formsof monetary rewards available, the researcher asked the participantsto list the types of monetary rewards that they preferred to receive.Among those identified were traveling allowance, pension, paybenefits, rent allowances, free utilities, property loans, paidvacations, and beneficial loans. The graph below is a representationof the approximate percentage of the preferred monetary rewards.

Graph3: Monetary reward in percentage.

Beloware the results for the non-monetary rewards that the participantsidentified that motivated them.

Graph4: Non-monetary reward in percentage.

4.9 Response from the employers

The researcher sought to establish the frequency with which theemployers motivated their employees. According to the results, 70%said that they did it quite regularly, 20% said that they did itoccasionally, while 10% said that they rarely did it.








Table2: Frequency of motivation.

The researcher then sought to establish the techniques that theemployers used to motivate their employees. 60% of the employers saidthat they used monetary rewards, while 40% said that they preferredto use non-monetary rewards.

Mode of reward






Table3: Monetary and non-monetary rewards.

Finally, the researcher sought to establish the perceived influenceof motivation and incentives on the performance of the employees. 70%of the employees felt that the employees improved their performancesignificantly in response to the motivation and incentives, while 20%felt that they improved slightly. 10% of the employers felt thattheir employees did not record any measurable improvement in responseto the motivation.



Significant improvement


Little improvement


No improvement


Table4: Perceived influence of motivation.

4.9.1 Correlation between motivation and performance

The table below shows the results of Pearson correlation for therelationship between motivation and employee performance.

Correlation between motivation and performance



Motivation (Pearson correlation sig. {2-tailed}







Performance and Pearson correlation sig. {2-tailed}







Table5: Pearson correlation sig. {2 tailed} with N= 30 Participants.

The results indicate a weak positive correlation at 0.150, which isstatistically significant 10% level of confidence. From the results,it is concluded that employee motivation has a positive influence ontheir output.

CHAPTER 5: DISCUSSION5.1 Introduction

This chapter focuses on the analysis and discussion of the researchresults. In essence, the chapter captures the issues that wereidentified in employee motivation and the impact the same has on jobperformance. The discussion in is line with the objectives of thestudy and the theoretical framework.

5.2 Characteristicsof the respondents

According to the results, a majority of the respondents were male.The implication of this is that the opinions and viewpoints regardingemployee motivation and job performance are most likely to be skewedtowards the male perspective. At the same time, the opinions of themale employee are likely to shape the decision-making processes whenit comes to motivation and incentives. Pitt et al. (2012) are of theopinion that the educational level of the respondents influences thenature of response to issues. Academic and working experience areinfluential determinants of the reliability of the information that arespondent gives. As such, given the acceptable educational levelsattained by the respondents, the researcher concluded that theirresponses were sufficiently informed. The age brackets of therespondents also significantly influence their response. A majorityof the respondents fell within the middle-age. According to Maslow’sHierarchy of Needs, the people within this category prioritize esteemand self-actualization, as well as having their lower needs takencare of.

5.3 Types of motivation and incentives

In every organization, employees have different preferences formotivation and incentives. In recognition of this, Darrington andHowell (2011) say that the employers use different forms ofincentives to make the employees comfortable and satisfied with theirworks. From the study, the researcher established that senioremployees were most likely to enjoy medical leaves as their favoriteincentive. This observation is closely related to Maslow’sHierarchy of needs, where primary satisfaction is highlighted bypersonal health and wellbeing. On the other hand, a good number ofemployees would prefer allowances and paid leaves. An analysis of thepreferences reveals that many employees regard breaks asentitlements, and not incentives. An implication of this observationis that while making decisions about rewarding the employees, themanagement has to balance between needs and wants. As such, the mostapplicable solution is to introduce categories of incentives to suitthe young and the senior employees, which besides having bothsatisfied, will keep them equally motivated.

5.4 Factorsinfluencing employee performance

At every organization, there are certain incentives that motivate theemployees to increase their productivity. When these factors are met,the employees are encouraged to stay with the organization. Accordingto the research results, the factors that motivate the employees toincrease their output are significant indicators of theirperformance. These factors included the mode of leadership that theirorganizations applied, the environment in which they worked and therelationship between the employees and the management, as well asamong themselves. The study established that environmental factorshad a significant influence on employee performance. As well,monetary factors played a key role in driving the employees toincrease their productivity. Bakker, Demerouti and Lieke (2012) saythat these are some of the factors that entice the employees to meettheir goals, and as such, increase their productivity. According toHerzberg, Hygiene factors are important in satisfying the employeesand motivating them at their places of work (Pehler, 2011). At thesame time, while it is noticeable that the employees aresignificantly influenced by environmental factors, there is anunderlying need to increase their moral through monetary means.

5.5 Recognition andmotivation

Similar to the other elements of employee motivation, the employeeshave different preferences for recognition and motivation. Accordingto Kosfeld and Neckermann (2011), recognition is a form of internalmotivation, which is dependent upon the preferences of both theorganizations and the employees. It is a powerful means ofcommunication, which besides letting the employees know that theirefforts are welcome, motivates them to do better in the future.Public relations practitioners, who have a big responsibility inmanagement, have used this technique to praise the employees. Thevariables that tend to keep people satisfied through recognition areevenly distributed, as supported by the results from the study.Employees are influenced to give more when they feel that the type ofrecognition that they have been given is sufficient. This works as amorale booster, which many organizations have used in the moderntimes. Further, Davila, Epstein and Shelton (2012) assert thatrecognition acts as an environmental regulator which leads to variousoutcomes, all associated with the improvement of the human resourceproductivity. According to motivational theorists, the employers havethe responsibility of recognizing any type of work that is done wellin their organization. From the research results, the studyestablished that the form of recognition is not skewed towards aparticular pattern. Regardless, various forms of recognition have ameasurable impact on the performance of the employees, and have to beused as key motivational tools in organizations.

5.6 Rewards: Monetaryand non-monetary rewards

Besides recognition, rewarding is a key motivation tool foremployees. This is an action that the employers take to influence theperformance of the employees positively. However, the employees havedifferent attitudes towards the kinds of rewards that they receive.In light of this, scholars have identified two kinds of rewards,which are monetary and non-monetary rewards. Coelho, Augusto andLages (2011) say that a portion of the congratulatory rewards thatthe employees receive are comparable within their peers. Regardless,extrinsic rewards such as payments and promotion have been recognizedto be some of the most influential in organizations.

A majority of the employees from the research study demonstrated thatthey had a high affinity for monetary rewards. This lining is amanifestation of internal and external factors that play indetermining the amount of motivation that they employees derive frommonetary and non-monetary rewards. These internal and externalfactors, as identified in the literature review, are responses toindividuals’ internal and external stimuli. The preference eitherkind of rewards explains the observation whereby behaviors aredeveloped and sustained over time. In such light, human behavior isflexible and determines their attitude towards factors that motivatethem.

Employees come from different economic and social backgrounds, whichis one of the explanation for their choice of mode of reward. Scottand McMullen (2013) explain that employers motivate their workers tosustain their survival. In the modern times, monetary rewards providethe best solution and platform for survival. After the workers’finances have been satisfied, they then move on to develop a want forrecognition, which explains the differences in the monetary rewardsshown.

Thecorrespondents also valued the role that non-monetary motivationworked in motivating them to improve at work. However, from theresearch, it was established that achievement has the leastimplication on the workers. Physical environment and the relationshipwith colleagues is highly regarded as a form of motivation at thework place. From the findings, it is imperative that the employeesneed to institute policies that rewarded issues that the employeesfelt that most motivated them at the place of work. Moreover, thestatistics have implications for managers who want to encourage theiremployees without having to use monetary mean. Besides rewarding themfor their good work, the management should also recognize theemployees’ extra efforts not only to satisfy their personalambitions, but also help the organization to achieve its objectives.Massey and Meegan (2014) say that when a good working environment andrelationship between the employees and management are promoted, thestaff is automatically motivated, and their productivity isincreased.

5.7 Importance ofmotivation

The results of the study have demonstrated the importance and impactof motivation on employee performance. The revelation from theresearch results indicates that the employees and the management havea positive attitude towards the effect of employee motivation on jobperformance. While there are a few contrary remarks from theresearch, a comfortable margin of the findings echo the implicationsof the theory of motivation and the findings by empirical studies byvarious scholars. In line with the study by Chiang and Hsieh (2012),there are various factors that influence that the employees need formotivations to boost their performance. At the beginning, theemployees are motivated by monetary incentives. This comes in termsof payments, cash-hand offs, and salary increments, along other formsof monetary rewards. The incentives boosts them to perform andincrease their productivity. As time goes by, the employees aremotivated by other factors such as verbal encouragement. According toKirk, Schutte and Hine (2011), this accelerates and energizes them todeliver more, hence increasing organizational productivity.Regardless, at all stages, the environmental and personal desires arekey motivators for employee performance, which also significantlydetermines job satisfaction.

Judging from the distribution of the responses, and the amount ofdeviation from analysis, it is justifiable to state that motivatingemployees improves their productivity. However, the management has tofactor in demographic and individual differences to determine thekind of motivation that the employees need so to increase theirproductivity. From the response of the management, there is a strongcorrelation between positive recognition of employee performance as amotivation technique for increased job performance. Similarly,employing various tactics in motivating the employees yieldsdifferent, but significantly positive results.

Usingthe Two-Factor theory, the researcher established the relationshipbetween employee motivation and performance. The validation of thisestablishment was based on their being a significant statisticalassociation between the motivation that the employees received andthe impact of the same on their output. As such, the researcher usedthe Pearson correlation coefficient to determine the associationbetween these two variables. From the results, the coefficient alphanotes that motivation has a positive influence on the productivity ofthe employees. Additionally, an increase in the motivationalincentives and other input by the management to boost the employees’moral has a resultant positive influence on their performance. Thesefindings are in line with the assertion by Diefendorff and Chandler(2011) and Temmick, Meanrs and Furhen (2013) that a motivated personis aware of certain goals that need to achieved, and will increasethe effort to achieve them sufficiently.


In every organization, factors that motivate the employees are thecenter of focus for every management. The reason is because theemployees, as the backbone of the human resource, are thedeterminants of organizational productivity, which in turn, are thedrivers of competitiveness and profitability. The study has confirmedHerzberg’s factors, which contribute to satisfaction at work.According to these factors, employee motivation is significantlyinfluenced by environmental factors that have a direct impact ontheir wellbeing. These factors are the ones that determine how theemployees relate with each other and with the management.Additionally, the study demonstrated that motivation plays a centralrole in boosting employee performance. Without motivation, theemployees would only give their average, and would not be focusedtowards giving the maximum. The management also plays a key role inmotivating the employees through two main ways. The first one isrecognition of a job well done. According to the framework that wasdeveloped by Herzberg, the management is tasked with providing bothintrinsic and extrinsic motivators, as a way of doing away with jobdissatisfaction. Recognizing employees for their effort has beenfound to be one form of intrinsic motivation, as it is a booster totheir morale. While recognizing the effort of the employees, themanagement has to ensure that it factors in elements such as theirage and personal needs. The paper established that differentemployees appreciate different forms of recognition, which boosttheir morale, and subsequently, their performance.

Secondly, besides recognizing the employees for their efforts, themanagement has to rewards them. the employees feel motivated whenthey are motivated for good work done through organizational rewards.According to the implications of the content theories, the employeesare motivated by the thought of how much they will get rewarded forachieving something. This thought leads to a chain of activities thatpositively influence the employees’ output in the long run.However, while rewarding the employees, the management has todetermine the kind of rewards that will achieve the intended purpose,which is to motivate them. This observation is due to the fact thatdifferent employees have different personalities, which influencesthe kind of rewards that they will appreciate.

The research established that there is a positive correlation betweenemployee motivation and job performance. The findings were in linewith the two variable theory. Organizational management shouldhowever ensure that the mode of motivation that they use at theirrespective establishments work for them. The measure is due to thefact that different groups of people are positively motivated throughdifferent means. Regardless, Maslow’s theory applies to thefindings of the research. However, the needs are met categorically,with different employees being motivated to perform through thesatisfaction of different needs at a time. For instance, anorganization with a majority of young employees would want to satisfythe biological and physiological needs of the employees first. Thisis done through incentives like paid leaves and vacations. By doingthis, the productivity of the employees will significantly increase,on the assumption that their job satisfaction is met. However, forolder employees, Maslow’s Needs of higher ranks, such as belongingsand self-actualization apply. In regard of this, senior employeeswill be motivated to improve their productivity through retirementpackages, property loans and personal fulfillment. From thesefindings, the researcher concludes that productivity is improvedthrough categorical consideration and fulfilment of the needs ofindividual employees, rather than collective actions. Similarly,employee motivation should be considered as a strategic objective foran organization, and be structuralized to yield maximum benefit forthe employees and the organization. It remains a vital push factorfor modern organizations, and its effect on the employee performanceis continuous and progressive.

6.2 Recommendations

As per the findings of the paper, this study finds it necessary forthe management to reward the employees properly to achieve maximumproductivity. Besides the motivation incentives that organizationsuse, the organizations need to improve the atmosphere and make itconducive for maximum efficiency. The recommendations are as follows:-

  1. From the findings, the researcher recommends that the employers take time to establish the kind of incentives that motivate their employees. One of the most effective way of doing this is assessing the employees’ needs at an individual level, and avoiding generalization of needs and wants.

  2. The public and private sectors have to collaborate in human management research to determine the needs of the human resource, as far as employee motivation is concerned. This is in realization of the fact that elements such as employee turn-over, which may result in inter-sector job exchange, have a long term effect on job expectations by different individuals. As such, having a framework of addressing employee motivation factors at different levels is instrumental for improvement of job performance.

  3. From the research findings, employee motivation is highly regarded by both junior and senior staff. As such, the managements of organizations should endeavor to structure the human resource departments to be focused on encouraging and promoting employees adequately. By doing this, the organizations will have prioritized employee motivation in their respective organizations.


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APPENDIXAppendix 1:Questionnaire

Dearrespondent, this research questionnaire is to investigate the impactof employee motivation on job performance. I will be grateful if youcould take your time to respond to the questions to the best of yourknowledge. Your feedback will be very important in studying thetopic, and you are guaranteed that every information will be treatedwith utmost confidentiality. Thank you once again for your time.


1Gender () Male () Female

2. Age ………………..

3.Educational attainment () PhD () Masters () Graduate

4.How long have you been working?

()0-4 Years

()4-8 Years

()8-12 Years

()12 Years and above

5.What is your current job category/position?

()Junior employee



6.What incentives do you receive at your place of work?


7.What factors influence your performance at work?


8.How much do you think motivation is important to you as an employee?

()Very much



()Very little

9.From a level of 1 to 10, how much do you think your employer’sincentives have helped you to improve your performance? 1 is verylittle, and 10 is very much.











10.Do you feel sufficiently satisfied with your employer’s motivation?



11From the options below, please tick the one you feel best way torecognize your efforts.

()Thank you notes

()Time off with pay

()Cash hand-offs

()Certificate of outstanding service

()Opportunity to grow

()Employee awards

()Employee-of-the-month award

()Verbal appreciation for work done

12.From the modes of reward below, which one would you prefer tomotivate you?

()Monetary benefits

()Job promotion


13.Which kind of monetary rewards would motivate you to improveperformance?


14.Which king of non-monetary rewards would motivate you to improveperformance?



15.How often do you motivate your employees




16.What techniques do you use to motivate your employees



17.How well do your employees respond to motivation in terms of jobperformance?

()Significant improvement

()Little improvement

()No improvement

Appendix 2: Figures

Figure1: Factors that influence employee performance.

Figure2: Reward for good performance.

Appendix 3: Tables

Type of incentive



Medical leaves






Paid leaves



Property loans



Table1: Types of incentives that the employee identified.








Table2: Frequency of motivation.

Mode of reward






Table3: Monetary and non-monetary rewards.



Significant improvement


Little improvement


No improvement


Table4: Perceived influence of motivation.

Correlation between motivation and performance



Motivation (Pearson correlation sig. {2-tailed}







Performance and Pearson correlation sig. {2-tailed}







Table5: Pearson correlation sig. {2 tailed} with N= 30 Participants.

Appendix 4: Graphs

Graph1: How the employees value motivation at work.

Graph2: Recognition for work done.

Graph3: Monetary reward in percentage.

Graph4: Non-monetary reward in percentage