To read this content please select one of the options below:

Work, motivation and personal characteristics: an in‐depth study of six organizations in Ningbo

Fang Yang (Ningbo Institute of Education, Ningbo, People's Republic of China)

Chinese Management Studies

ISSN: 1750-614X

Article publication date: 30 August 2011




The purpose of this paper is to investigate employees' work motivation in China. It aims to give answers to two questions: what motivates employees in China? What are the effects of personal characteristics on work motivation for employees in China?


The study used convenience sampling to select the sample and the respondents were randomly selected from employees of six organizations, from people in the personnel market and also from people walking around in shopping centres in a very representative city of China – Ningbo. Then, descriptive statistics, t‐test (one sample t‐test, independent sample t‐test and one‐way ANOVA), regression analysis and scatter plots were used to analyze the data.


The findings of the study are: all the 15 motivation factors listed in the questionnaire, including good pay, promotion, desirable work environment, good welfare package, good bonus system, good company policy, good interpersonal relationships, good supervisors, job security, the opportunity to use my ability, a sense of challenge and achievement, positive recognition, autonomy, self‐actualization and interesting job, do motivate employees in China; good pay is the most important motivator for employees in China; employees' work motivation is affected by their personal characteristics.


It is believed that these findings can assist organizations in China, those located in Ningbo in particular, in effectively motivating their employees. It may also be applied to organizations located in other parts of the world which have Chinese employees.



Yang, F. (2011), "Work, motivation and personal characteristics: an in‐depth study of six organizations in Ningbo", Chinese Management Studies, Vol. 5 No. 3, pp. 272-297.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles