Equity & Expectancy Theory of Motivation

Topics: Motivation, Input, Output Pages: 5 (1561 words) Published: October 13, 2011
Motivation Explain Adams equity theory Adams’ equity theory is a motivational model that attempts to explain the relationship between what an employee puts into their job (input), what they get out of it (output) and the fairness and justice exchanged between the two (Cosier & Dalton, 1983). Inputs include all factors that are perceived as necessary to obtain a return, such as effort, loyalty, hard work, commitment, skill, ability, flexibility, tolerance, determination, heart and soul, enthusiasm, trust in the employer and personal sacrifice. Whilst outputs include all factors that are seen as a return of the job such as financial rewards, perks, benefits, pension arrangements, recognition, reputation, praise, interest, responsibility, travel, training, development, sense of achievement and promotion (Cosier & Dalton, 1983). A fair and equitable balance of the two are based on the employees own perception, thoughts and beliefs and are formed through comparing the employees own situation with other employees in the market place along with opinions and comparisons from colleagues, friends and partners (Kreitner & Kinicki, 2010). Ultimate Software has been able to provide an equitable balance between the inputs and outputs of their employees through implementing some of the key principles of equity theory. For example they are providing a strong leadership role model through Scott Scherr-the CEO, they are being attentive to their employees’ perception of fairness and more importantly they are involving their employees in the decision making and policy process. In return this has promoted cooperation and team work within the company (Kreitner & Kinicki, 2010). More specifically Ultimate Software application of being attentive and involving their employees was demonstrated when their employee suggested that they offer paid adoption leave to their employee and they consequently implemented the benefit (Kreitner & Kinicki, 2010). This particular employee was about to adopt herself so she perceived that the output of “adoption leave” was a fair and equitable reward for her inputs of effort, loyalty, commitment, skill, ability and work (Cosier & Dalton, 1983). Thus by listening and implementing her suggestion Ultimate Software met her sense of fairness. In addition they also conveyed to her a sense of

involvement with the decision and policy making process. Consequently the employee regarded Ultimate Software as a fair, observant and appreciative employer. So much so that she has remained with the company for four years and has since used the “adoption leave” again. Conversely the company could have chosen not to listen to this particular employee’s suggestion. As a result Ultimate Software would not have implemented adoption leave and the employee would have felt that her inputs of effort, loyalty, commitment, skill, ability and work were out-weighed by her received outputs. This would have been even more apparent if another company in the industry offered such a leave for adopting children. Consequently the employee would have felt underappreciated and would have become demotivated. This would have resulted in the employee reducing their effort and application, and even seeking an alternative job, perhaps one where adoption leave was available (Cosier & Dalton, 1983). Another example of the principles of equity theory at work in Ultimate Software is the use of benefit schemes to motivate employees. These schemes endeavour to provide employees with working conditions and policies that give additional rewards above and beyond the basic requirements to meet the perceived outputs of different individuals (Katzell & Thompson, 1990). For example an employee who perceived education as a fair and equitable output to their inputs is able to benefit from the company’s annual tuition reimbursement. Whilst an employee who perceives providing health cover for themselves and their family as an equitable output for their input will acquire a...
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