Herzberg's Motivation-Hygiene Theory and Job Satisfaction in the Malaysian Retail Sector: the Mediating Effect of Love of Money

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Asian Academy of Management Journal, Vol. 16, No. 1, 73–94, January 2011

HERZBERG'S MOTIVATION-HYGIENE THEORY AND JOB
SATISFACTION IN THE MALAYSIAN RETAIL SECTOR:
THE MEDIATING EFFECT OF LOVE OF MONEY
Tan Teck-Hong* and Amna Waheed
Sunway University, School of Business
5, Jalan Universiti, Bandar Sunway 46150 Petaling Jaya,
Selangor, Malaysia
*

Corresponding author: waltert@sunway.edu.my

ABSTRACT
This paper examines what motivates employees in the retail industry , and examines their level of job satisfaction, using Herzberg's hygiene factors and motivators. In this study, convenience sampling was used to select sales personnel from women's clothing stores in Bandar Sunway shopping mall in the state of Selangor. The results show that hygiene factors were the dominant motivators of sales personnel job satisfaction. Working conditions were the most significant in motivating sales personnel. Recognition was second, followed by company policy and salary. There is a need to delve more deeply into why salespeople place such a high importance on money. Further analysis was performed to assess how much the love of money mediates the relationship between salary and job satisfaction. Based on the general test for mediation, the love of money could explain the relationship between salary and job satisfaction. The main implication of this study is that sales personnel who value money highly are satisfied with their salary and job when they receive a raise.

Keywords: Herzberg's motivation-hygiene; job satisfaction; love of money, mediator, pay satisfaction, retailing, Malaysia

INTRODUCTION
This paper explores the effect of motivational variables on the job satisfaction of salespeople in the Malaysian retail sector. Retail is crucial to the economies of most countries, mainly because of its large scale at all levels; local, national and even international. The retailing sector in Malaysia has undergone continuous and significant change over the last few decades. New facilities ranging from superstores to retail warehouses have widened the retail landscape (Market Research, 2009). Retail has become one of the most dynamic sectors of the Malaysian economy because it is not only employs 20% of Malaysia's entire population, but is also the second largest contributor to the national GDP, © Asian Academy of Management and Penerbit Universiti Sains Malaysia, 2011

Tan Teck-Hong and Amna Waheed

contributing about US$ 35 billion in 2009, with a projection of US$ 58 billion in 2014 (PwC, 2009). Tourism contributes greatly to Malaysia's retail sales growth, as shopping revenue, which totalled US$ 4.6 billion in 2008 (Market Research, 2009), is the second highest component of the country's tourism revenue. Thus, the retail industry is considered to be a significant contributor to the growth, economy and stability of Malaysia.

The retail industry is subject to various problems and challenges. First, intense competition has resulted in price wars between foreign and local retailers. The majority of modern retail operations are foreign-owned and located in urban areas, whereas local stores dominate outside urban areas. Foreign retailers in Malaysia include Daily Farm (Giant), Tesco, Jaya Jusco, and Carrefour. As reported by Bailey (2009), Giant has the greatest market share with 8%, follow by Tesco (4%), Jusco (3%) and Carrefour (2%). Most local retailers are not geared to meet the challenges of globalization and do not have sufficient knowledge to compete with foreign retailers. Second, consumers these days prefer spacious shopping areas, attractive and trendy products, and ample parking space; preferences that are a major concern of many local retail stores as they attempt to combat competition. Third, consumer demands and shopping patterns are changing. Retailers are struggling to change their marketing strategy to suit consumer preferences. Malaysian shoppers have become more knowledgeable and discerning, and are not...
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