Washburn is an American guitar producing company with a hundred and twenty three years heritage. They have an annual production average of fifty thousand guitars and a turnover of over forty million dollars.
Most employees at Washburn are motivated by their passion for music, their workforce is majorly comprised of individuals who Love music, play music and values the craft and design of each and every guitar. Their promise to customers that they produce the best possible guitar for at the best possible prices keeps them at their toes to produce high quality products. Customer satisfaction is also another factor that motivates Washburn workers to produce the best guitars they possibly can as captured by Gill Vasquez, their new production manager, regarding high end signature models they make for stars, he had this to say regarding the Maya pro dd75 played by Dan the lead guitarist for the rock band Disturbed,‘ all these people gawking at him and you might hear that occasional, ‘man did you see that guitar, that thing was awesome, did you hear how it sounded, that was great.’ and you know you had something to do with that. The reaction elicited by the fans as the interact with the music made by the guitar is an important consideration for these workers as it gives them the back ground to either improve on aspects of the guitar or motivation to produce even better guitars to continue satisfying their clients.
Most employees at Washburn are likely to produce the highest quality guitars in their capability. These are mostly the high end signature models used by top artists as they make a connection with both the artist and their fans through their handicraft embedded in the guitar. This is due to the fact that they play the instruments and relate to experience of playing a quality instrument as opposed to a low quality one. This is captured by sentiments by Eric Karol, the floor manager quality control,’ a lot of the motivation comes from the product itself, when you see the finished product that ends up being a motivator in a lot of ways’
The acquisition of parker guitars, a high end guitar production company, improved the production processes at Washburn. This is as evidenced by the confessions of an employee ‘parker is known as the most innovative guitar facility for past twelve years, the standards held in parker guitars are now being applied in Washburn guitars’ the making of guitars is taken as not a production process but as piece of art being made. The quality of the products Washburn employees are likely to produce is aptly captured by Gill Vasquez, ‘it’s a labor of love’.
There is a strong connection between product quality and workforce motivation, a worker is content and highly satisfied in the knowledge that the products they release in to the market are high quality products that offer satisfaction to their client. A worker is able to find connection with the product they produce and take pride at their product. The production of high quality products gives the employee a higher sense of purpose other than making money. This is captured in the case study by the workers reaction towards the acquisition of Parker guitars by Washburn. Parker guitars have a reputation for making high quality, high end guitars. The employees were enthused about taking it up a notch higher and taking responsibility of producing high quality guitars. This is captured by the musings of Mark Durant, lead assembly set up, ‘the feeling of making a quality product made in the US and get a sense of accomplishment on every guitar you send out and knowing it’s a great guitar’
Washburn Guitar "Motivation" - video case. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k0lxJhIZCKg