In order to develop this paper, you will need to interview a full-time employee about his/her job. In the interview, you will use the components of several motivation theories to identify the factors that contribute to, and hinder, high performance and satisfaction for this employee. Based on this information, you will recommend changes that could be made to improve the employee’s performance on the job and/or satisfaction with the job. You may choose an employee in any type of job for this option as long as the employee is a full-time employee. It could be a co-worker, family member, or someone you’d like to meet. (You may not choose any of your instructors or yourself as the interviewee.)
In conducting the interview, I recommend that you use the Motivation Paper Interview Questionnaire (available in Oncourse under the Assignments tab) to gather information about the employee’s perception of his/her job. This questionnaire was developed from the motivation theories we have discussed in class and asks questions about five areas gleaned from the Expectancy Theory, Goal Setting Theory and Equity Theory. You can use the questions on this survey as interview questions or you can have the employee respond to the questions first (i.e. via e-mail) and then interview the employee to gather additional information. Either way, it is important that you follow up on the person’s responses to these questions to gather additional information. For example, if the employee indicates that the rewards available for high performance are not valued by him/her, you should find out what rewards, if any, are actually being offered and what rewards would be valued by the employee. After you have analyzed how effectively the various components of the motivation theories are being applied in this employee’s job, you will provide THREE recommendations for changes that could be made to improve the performance and satisfaction of the employee in this job. These recommendations should follow clearly from the analysis that you did and thus, should address what you believe are the three most important weaknesses in the job.
It should be clear from the above description AND from reviewing the grading rubric that you MUST analyze, and provide your conclusion for, each of the components addressed in the questionnaire. However, your analysis must go beyond simply providing your conclusion about each component – you need to provide evidence that supports your conclusion about how effectively the organization has addressed each component discussed in your interview. For example, it is not sufficient to simply say that the employee has (or doesn’t have) the resources or training needed to do their job effectively. You must also support this conclusion with evidence from the employee you interviewed. To do this, you should provide examples of resources the employee needs to perform effectively and indicate whether or not they are available to the employee. You should do the same thing for training: describe what, if any, training the employee is provided and then discuss whether that training is sufficient to enable them to perform effectively. If there is training or resources the employee needs to be able to perform more effectively, you should indicate what is needed.
When conducting your interview it is very important that you are professional and that you assure the person you are interviewing that you will not reveal their name or the name of the company they work for in your paper. You want to make sure that they feel comfortable providing you with honest information about their job. I would let the person know that you are doing the interview as part of a class assignment that is designed to help you to develop the skills you will need to be effective in a management/supervisory position.
Please use APA formatting: 12-point Times New Roman font, double-spaced, with one-inch margins on all sides. Also, please use the following section headings:
II. Expectancy Theory: EffortPerformance
III. Expectancy Theory: PerformanceOutcome
IV. Expectancy Theory: Valence
V. Goal-Setting Theory
VI. Equity Theory
A. First Recommendation
B. Second Recommendation
C. Third Recommendation
- Be sure to include in your introduction that information that includes the context of the interview:
• the type of organization the employee you interviewed works for and the nature of the products and/or services the organization provides. (Please do not use actual company names to protect the anonymity of your interviewee.)
• the job title of the employee you interviewed
• a brief description of job duties for the employee you interviewed (2-3 sentences or bullet points)
- A reference page, with a minimum of three sources, in APA format, is required. Please use “John Doe” or “Jane Doe” and “Company X” to protect the interviewee’s anonymity when referencing the interview. No Wikipedia is permitted.
- Three citations are required, and only one can be from your interview.
- The expected length is 8-10 pages, not including the title page and reference page. Papers slightly over 10 pages will not be penalized.
- All papers will be put through Turn It In anti-plagiarism tool. PLEASE DO NOT PLAGIARIZE!
Motivation Paper Interview Questionnaire
Below I have provided more detailed questions that should enable you to gather information that I expect you to address in your paper for each of the various motivation theories. I would recommend that you take this with you when you do your interview as it will help you to identify specific follow-up questions that you can ask.
- Expectancy Theory: EffortPerformance
This answers the question, “If I exert a lot of effort, will I perform well?”
Ask, “Do you believe that by working hard you will reach a certain level of performance? Do you have all the resources you need to succeed, such as training, software, certifications, etc.? If yes, what in particular enables you to achieve that level of performance? If not, what is missing?”
- Expectancy Theory: PerformanceOutcome
This answers the question, “If I perform well, will I receive outcomes?”
Ask, “If you achieve a certain level of performance, what are the outcomes? In other words, is it more rewarding to be a high achiever than a low or average achiever? If yes, how is high performance rewarded? If not, what needs to change? Are the rewards extrinsic (external) or intrinisic (rewards from the job itself)?”
- Expectancy Theory: Valence
This answers the question, “Will the outcomes be satisfying?”
Ask, “What are the rewards for high performance? Are the rewards meaningful and valued by you? If yes, why? If not, why not? What other outcomes would have greater value to you?”
- Goal Setting Theory
This determines whether goals are specific and difficult goals are assigned to the employee.
Ask, “Do you understand the goals set for you by the organization? Are they adequately challenging? Do they meet the S.M.A.R.T. criteria? If yes, how? If not, what needs to change?”
- Equity Theory
This determines whether an employee perceives fairness in his or her ratio of outcomes/inputs compared to other employees.
Ask, “Do you believe that rewards are distributed fairly (not necessarily equally)? Do believe that the criteria for rewarding employees are fair and accurate? Why do you believe that? What would you change?”
Please note that all these questions are simply a starting point. You will most likely need to address some of these with follow-up questions. It is impossible for me to come up with each follow-up question you may need to ask, so simply keep in mind that your end goal is to conduct an analysis that leads you to very specific and pointed recommendations for change.
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