Employee Rewards and Creativity in Organizations

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This chapter of the study gives the background of the topic, the statement of the problem, the purpose of the study, the objectives of the study, the research questions of the study, the scope, significance and structure of the study.

A reward is a management tool that hopefully contributes to a firm’s effectiveness by influencing individual or group behavior. Rewards in organizations are usually to reinforce an organization’s value, promote outstanding performance and foster continuous learning.

According to motivation and human factor literature, rewarding employees for their contribution is an issue that has been much discussed and debated about.

Cameron and Pierce suggest that in a workplace, careful arrangement of rewards can enhance employee interest and performance and this is likely to occur when rewards are closely tied to the attainment of performance standards and to the performance accomplishment of challenging tasks.

However, the two concluded in their research that rewards can have negative effects but their effects are circumscribed and can easily be prevented. However when rewards are linked to specific standards of performance people or employees are more contented and productive in the enterprise.

Creativity is a mental and vocal process involving the generation of new ideas or concepts or new associations of a creative mind between existing ideas or concepts. The process of either conscious or unconscious insight fuels creativity. That is why according to the free wikipedia, creative ideas are often generated when one discards preconceived assumptions and attempts a new approach or method that might seem to others as unthinkable.

Cooperation and competitiveness among organizations encourage creativity, just as encouraging creativity is the best way to improve competitiveness in the organization. According to Simonton (2000), creativity is affected by the overall society and culture and certain kinds of creativity may or be accepted or revolted by society. And according to Guilford (1950), an individual’s creativity is mainly defined in terms of his own period personal characteristic. Amable (1996) suggests that creativity is greatly influenced by the environment and culture, which includes the background and the context in which one grows up.

However, creativity of employees is directly affected by their working environment and stimulating factors like reward of employees in this environment will definitely make them contribute their best effort to what they do. Rewarding employees in an organization, as a way to motivate them to be creative can be through verbal or tangible rewards, financial or non-financial rewards like giving money, tickets to a theatre, certificates or other similar rewards.

Never the less, reward and award giving in organizations has failed to increase creativity or stimulate creativity in a number of business enterprises yet very many managers think improving on the reward system is a direct way of improving creativity among employees.

In today’s highly competitive market place, one of the key ingredients of a company’s survival is its ability to generate new ideas or better ways of doing things. How, then, can a company foster workplace creativity rather than squelch it? That is the subject of a new study by Jing Zhou, associate professor of management at the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Management, and Shung Jae Shun from Washington State University. There are, the researchers report, important links between an organization’s leadership and its employees’ creativity.

“By creativity, we mean the ability to produce something that is new and that will add value to the company,” Zhou says. “That can include fresh approaches to production, managing people, or delivering services—anything with a tangible result. Not...
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