Organizational Behavior: Wegmans vs. Nugget Market

Topics: Motivation, Employment, Supermarkets of the United States Pages: 19 (7048 words) Published: March 21, 2011
Effective employee motivation has been one of management’s most difficult and important duties (Kinicki, 147). There will always be employees that are and are not motivated in their jobs and managers need to understand the psychological processes behind motivation if they want to successfully guide employees toward accomplishing organizational goals (Kinicki, 147). According to, the “100 Best Companies to Work For” are ranked by employees themselves. When trying to place different companies on this list, two-thirds of their score is based on results of a survey that is sent to a random sample of employees asking such questions like their views on management's credibility, the camaraderie they get from the job, and, of course, their job satisfaction. Wegmans, a supermarket founded in 1916, is ranked number three, while Nugget Markets, a supermarket founded in 1926, is ranked number five (100 Best, 2010). How have these two companies achieved such high points with their employees? Both companies have found ways to motivate their employees. Whether it’s through benefits and rewards, helping to fulfill certain needs, offering job advancement to enlarge or enrich these jobs through skill variety, or developing interpersonal relationships at work, Wegmans and Nugget Markets have certainly done their part. Wegmans Rewards

Being ranked as the third highest company to work for, it seems as if Wegmans must have some secret behind their superior work ethic. The answer is quite simple; they treat their employees with respect and provide them with extrinsic rewards, which ultimately cause the employees to be intrinsically motivated and help in the success of the organization. Monetarily, Wegmans provides “merit raise evaluations every January and June” based on performance and additional year-end bonuses (Boyle, 2005; Werner, 2010). Supplemental compensation is surely appreciated by the employees, but it is the work experience and skill variety that motivates the workers to constantly achieve advancement. In order to recognize employees for their exemplary work and organizational citizenship behavior, Wegmans offers management internship programs to those that go above and beyond in the work environment (Werner, 2010). The opportunity to vertically integrate within the company is what intrinsically motivates the employees to achieve more. In addition to recognizing those that excel above the normal job core requirements, Wegmans does still acknowledge all the workers who obtain organizational commitment and provide the necessary services to make this company profitable. Employee appreciation luncheons, health screens, and holiday parties are some of the added bonuses that are provided (Werner, 2010). Daily, an employee may be nominated for the CARE program. These nominations are based on the employee’s work ethic of displaying Wegmans’ “who we are” values. Anyone can nominate a peer to hear a five dollar extra care card to be used in the store, and multiple winners can be selected in any day (Hill, 2010). According to Julie Hill (2010), Service Area Manager, she thinks this system is a great way to implement the company’s core values while also promoting motivation. An Employee of the Month is also awarded to those that show an outstanding dedication to the job (Hill, 2010). Furthermore, as a way to provide the employees with a need for achievement, cross training opportunities are given in order to enhance skill variety (Werner, 2010). Katie Werner (2010), a Wegmans front-end manager, stated that she is “effectively motivated” by the feedback she is given by upper management. The evaluations are used as a form of reinforcement for employees and not seen as a discouragement. One of the more substantial ways that Wegmans promotes learning and achievement is through its scholarship program. Within the past twenty years, “the company has shelled out fifty-four million dollars for college...

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