Motivation and Commitment at Work


Of all the challenges in the Organisational, in particular for the HR department, the key issue is to create and maintain a motivated and committed staff, since the more committed and motivated workforce the higher the probability of achieving organisational objectives and enhancing work performance.


One of the most talked about subject in the study of business is employee motivation and commitment; their importance cannot be underestimated as both directly have an impact on the organisational performance and effectiveness. Although debatable but One of the Aspect that acts as a differentiator between the HRM and traditional personnel management is the motivation and commitment of the employees. It is the holy grail of HRM (Storey, 1992).

In psychology, motivation is a term used to explain why people behave in a certain way. Motivation is the force that ignites, directs and maintains our behaviour (Bartol and Martin, 1998). The definition has three key components. The first is ignition, is the initial feeling of interest that a person has towards achieving a set goal. The second is direction, is the set of actions that people will take in order to achieve their goal. Direction is influenced by what an individual most desires to do. The third is maintenance of the behaviour until the goal is achieved. Maintenance equates to how much an individual is willing to stay in that direction when difficulties arise. For example, if an employee is wishing to get a pay rise, he/she will probably be more willing to stay for extra hours and take extra tasks at work. Or an Employee motivated to prove his worth to the top management would take interest in his/her and work and would direct his efforts at understanding it from every angle, and once the employee achieves a certain level of performance, he/she would make maximum effort with whole commitment at maintaining the performance and improving it.

At Work motivations change for different people, varied motivating factors could be observed for range of people, a dominant factor is money, whereas better working environment, interesting Job could be vital in creating motivation at workplace.

The Difference between actual self (Could be referred to as the current state of the individual) and ideal self (A state person would like to be in) stimulates the important factor of need to change in the individual, this potent the need the higher would be the motivation and thus drive for transformation. At Workplace a person at a certain position failing to make an impression due to lack of skills, would be motivated to acquire skills that would help do his/her job in a better way. Motivation is of high significance in work environment, motivation at workplace would require the Management to provide its staff with opportunities that would inspire the staff to make an effort and raise their level of commitment.

Theorists of work motivation distinguish between intrinsic, extrinsic and social motivators. However, there is an on-going disagreement on these distinctions because one motivator can be classified differently depending on its context at work. Nevertheless, a separation has to be made in order to explain the different types of motivators.

Intrinsic Motivator

Literature defines intrinsic motivators as the ones that concern the individual and originates from the nature of job for instance as satisfaction with work, personal development, acknowledgement from managers or an interest in a task or a project at work. Intrinsic motivators are largely psychological.

Extrinsic motivators

Extrinsic motivators are the ones that are beyond individual’s control and they are tangible such as pay increase, bonuses or other material goods.

Social Motivators

Social motivators originate when an individual is with other people; mostly stemming from having a common purpose as a group or a team. Social motivators are also mostly psychological.