A Discussion used to increase performance at
Ely Paper Company
Our organization is experiencing a problem in that sales are lower than they have been in ten years and we need to make drastic changes in order to improve the motivation of our employees, said the CEO of one of the largest paper plate producing business in Ely, Minnesota. Mr. Ely, the CEO, knew that motivation of employees was important because of its significance as a determinant of performance and its intangible nature. Motivation is the set of forces that cause people to choose certain behaviors from among the many alternatives open to them and is key to the success of any business. Mr. Ely hired a consulting firm to determine the best motivation techniques to use to motivate the administrative, production and sales personnel at his company. What follows is the motivational theories use by the Ely Paper Company to recover from the great recession of and how thirty years later businesses are still learning from the theories that prepared this paper company to be a role model for organizational behavior for over twenty years. Motivation of Administrative Personnel
Meet Wanda, the administrative support person for the sales force of our organization. She has done general clerical work ever since the day she graduated high school. Now, 15 years past Wanda has been in her present job for three years. Her responsibilities include sorting and routing the mail, ordering supplies and stationery, assisting the sales force and the sales manager with clerical duties, packaging all sales transactions with ensuring all necessary paperwork is attached, verifying, correcting, assembling and forwarding time records to payroll and keeping general sales statistics for the sales force rewards program. Although, Wanda's job is not perceived to be very stressful by her co-workers, Wanda (whiny Wanda as they call her), spends most of her day attempting to get out of doing work than actually performing her job functions. She complains that she is overworked yet it is difficult to find her whereabouts at any given timeshe spends a lot of time away from her desk. She manages to skirt around some of her duties by pawning off her work to others; for example, she has been known to simply pass on time records to payroll without the important step of verifying them for accuracy. Accordingly, this has caused some disgruntled employees when their paychecks and commission checks were shorted. Wanda's boss, the sales manager, is at a loss of how to motivate her for the good of the organization and for her own job satisfaction. The Steady Style Specialist behavior fits Wanda somewhat. The Specialist is motivated to do only what they know and know only what they do; they focus on their own interests. This is evident in Wanda since she believes she is the only one that works hard in the entire organization. One motivational theory could assist in motivating this employee is the Equity Theory (Adams). The Equity theory suggests that once an individual has chosen an action that is expected to satisfy their needs, that individual will access its fairness of the outcome. Equity Theory is a belief that he or she is being treated fairly relative to others. In Wanda's case, if she feels under-rewarded, she will do something to reduce the inequity. Hence, she lets other do her work for her and/or leaves her desk for hours at a time. This closely relates to her "specialist style" of behavior. Alessandra, Tony. (2004). To begin understanding Wanda, her boss should first know where her attitude is stemming from. It may be that Wanda does not want or need motivationshe may be there just to do no more of what is expected of her, collect a paycheck, and make a comfortable living for her and her son. If this is the case, her boss must align her with the core values of the company to make her understand that behavior is not what the...