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Employee Motivation at Wal-Mart in China Evaluation Essay

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Updated: Feb 10th, 2020

Relationship between Job Satisfaction, Job motivation and Job Performance

is a set of energetic forces that develop both within and beyond someone, to influence work-related behaviour, and to determine its form, direction, intensity and time (Doyle, 2012). Job satisfaction is how an individual is contented with his or her job. Job performance is an individual output in terms of quality and quantity in a particular job (Doyle, 2012).

This discussion explores a problem of employee motivation at Wal-Mart retail chain in China. It also connects the issues with Herzberg’s Motivation Theory (Doyle, 2012). Basing on Herzberg theory of motivation, the paper explores the relationship between Job performance, Job Satisfaction, Job motivation and Job Performance using Wal-Mart practices as a case in point.

Motivation Theory

According to Herzberg motivation theory the motivating factors comprise recognition, achievement, form of work done, accountability, growth and advancement (Doyle, 2012).

As Herzberg indicated, the sanitation aspects of his model include the rules and administrational aspects, life of the employees, favourable conditions at work, closeness or connection with the administration, payment matters, and work to work relationship (Doyle, 2012).

As emphasized by Herzberg, motivating factors are all company aspects that aim at helping employees meet their needs (Doyle, 2012). When both sanitation or hygiene and motivating factors are not handled well, employees are not likely to be motivated and as such their performance will not be to the maximum.

Employee motivation issue in Wal-Mart China

At the turn of 21st century, Wal-Mart became one of the largest retail chains worldwide. However, in order to reduce operating expenses and maintain prices to a minimum, Wal-Mart pays very low salaries, offers minimal benefits to its workforce, and applies punitive policies that do not support employees at all (Chen, 2013).

For instance, in China, the corporation replicated its corporate practice of low-cost, high -bulk model to a high-cost Chinese market. This practice has led to a conflict, and as the result the company is facing many challenges relating to labour, salaries and wages (Chen, 2013). That is, the company’s mission is to meet the expectations of its clients and not employees.

The company pays its employees very low salaries and does not recognize the leadership of workers union (Chen, 2013). Based on this practice, there is inequality, tensions around labour and workplace rights (Chen, 2013).

The labour activist called Wang was sacked for agitating for the rights of his fellow workers, and lately he was leading demonstrations with the aim of forcing the Wal-Mart management not to cut pay of the employees. So far, the company has recorded many demonstrations by workers demanding for better pay, a good compensations scheme and good working conditions (Chen, 2013).

In Wal-Mart, workers are not encouraged or satisfied by the amount of money paid to them. The organization demands a lot from workers yet it pays minimum salaries. These low salaries and wages have direct impact on the ability of employees of Wal-Mart to satisfy their needs (Rosenfeld, 2012). The company majorly emphasizes just one outcome of business, while overlooking other performance aspects.

The organization remunerates employees poorly in order to record higher returns. Based on the fact that Wal-Mart has failed to meet the needs of its staff, and certainly has de-motivated them, the employees resort to such anti-work behaviours like prolonged strikes, late-coming, non-attendance and inability to meet company deadlines (Doyle, 2012). Further, they have been displaying open frustration aspects that negatively contribute to the credibility and performance of the organization.

Herzberg categorized motivational and hygiene aspects as the most significant motivational theory, particularly, when there is uncertainty and challenges can occur (Rosenfeld, 2012). In most cases, if workers are concerned that their work is insecure, they may be discouraged to produce to their maximum.

An employee cannot be motivated without protection. In other words, if the factors that motivate employees are fully provided, they are likely to become motivated and in the end the company is likely to record high work performance (Rosenfeld, 2012). The work setting in Wal-Mart is not conducive that is why employees working in Chinese retail shops are finding it hard to continue working. Even with this situation, Wal-Mart does not involve itself in things that do not help employees meet their needs.

The company cuts the health cover of its workers making it hard for them to access affordable healthcare. In most cases companies from western nations have policies that do favour people from the east. Because, they are after profits, yet eastern cultures emphasize service. Such organizations also think that employees are satisfied with a job they have been offered and other work-related issues.

In fact, the interests of such organizations are not about creating space for people to enrich themselves but about getting the best out of them (Rosenfeld, 2012).

Because of lack of motivational factors for workers, a good number of employees started to dislike their jobs, giving an unimpressed emotional connection to their works, as well as being discontented with their responsibility in the place of work (Doyle, 2012). With all these unenthusiastic and unattractive factors of being an employee at Wal-Mart, it is unimaginable that Wal-Mart will at any given time provide incentives that motivate employees.

Conclusion

Herzberg argues that in order to maximally encourage people a business organization is supposed to have all factors checked and positioned. That is, it needs to take into account such factors like hygiene aspects and motivational factors which will be employed to motivate employees.

However, in absence of these factors, it is hard to motivate employees. Wal-Mart, however, pays lower salaries to employees, thus, reducing their willpower. Under such circumstances, most of the workers start to dislike their jobs, as well as being discontented with the responsibility in the place of work. All this happens because the company is always after minimizing costs in order to take home exorbitant profits.

Employees are a big asset in the company. That is, the way they feel and act impacts the outcome of the company. If the workforce is encouraged to work through incentives and other things, they are likely to work hard in order to achieve the targets of their company on top of helping the company stay ahead of competition in the industry. In most cases, only two undertakings can build a very strong business.

A business that recognizes its employees is not likely to be susceptible to challenges as workers are fully committed to achieve the organizational goals. In other words, a business that is not stable can not perform and as such cannot meet its goals. When the productivity of an organization reduces, it is put in a position that cannot help it surmount internal and external challenges and above all, its future success and sustenance will be unclear.

Reference List

Chen, M. (2013). Wal-Mart Empire Clashes with China. The Progressive Magazine, Web.

Doyle, G. (2012). Motivational Processes. In D. Baack, Organizational behavior (pp.99-124). New York, USA: Bridgepoint Education.

Rosenfeld, M. (2012). What employees perceive and how they learn. In D. Baack, Organizational Behaviour (pp.65-98). New York, USA: Bridgepoint Education.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'Employee Motivation at Wal-Mart in China'. 10 February.

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