What motivates employees according to over 40 years of motivation surveys

Carolyn Wiley (University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA)

International Journal of Manpower

ISSN: 0143-7720

Publication date: 1 May 1997

Abstract

Explores past and present attitudes of employees concerning work‐related motivational factors. Understanding the factors that employees consider motivating lends insight to the rewards to which they more positively respond. Compares the results of four motivation surveys conducted in 1946, 1980, 1986 and 1992. The comparisons reveal that employees’ motivational preferences vary over time. In addition, the results of the 1992 survey indicate that the factors that motivate today’s workers are more extrinsic than they used to be. Although employees differ on how they rank these factors, they overwhelmingly selected “good wages” as the top motivator. A good wage is an extrinsic reward with intrinsic potency. On the surface “good wages” seem to be purely extrinsic. Yet, at a deeper level, monetary rewards communicate what the company values and affect employees’ emotional and familial wellbeing.

Keywords

Citation

Wiley, C. (1997), "What motivates employees according to over 40 years of motivation surveys", International Journal of Manpower, Vol. 18 No. 3, pp. 263-280. https://doi.org/10.1108/01437729710169373

Download as .RIS

Publisher

:

MCB UP Ltd

Copyright © 1997, MCB UP Limited

To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below

You may be able to access this content by logging in via Shibboleth, Open Athens or with your Emerald account.
To rent this content from Deepdyve, please click the button.
If you think you should have access to this content, click the button to contact our support team.