Wal-Mart is known to be the largest employer in the world consindeirng that it operates many stores all over the world hence has to employ many workers to run the operations of the retail company. Hiring employees for such a large institution is not a difficult task because employees are readily available. However, ensuring that the employees are motivated and remain in their job positions is the greatest challenge. However, the company has managed to retain employees and ensure that they are committed to serve the company.The aim of this paper is to discuss the motivational procedures of the company. The paper also recommends areas where the company can improve to ensure that the employees have greater motivation to work. The paper is based on the interviews conducted where the Wal-Mart employees and managers gave important information about motivation strategies at the company.
Accoridng to Abraham Maslow hierarchy needs theory, social needs are very crucial for the employees. The sales representatives meet every morning where they chat and have fun before they go out for work. In the morning, they meet with their sales manager where they evaluate the performance in the previous day. They also plan the targets for the day and assess the challenges that are faced in the marketing activities and what can be done. The fun in the meetings is that the employees are allowed to guess the sales of the previous day and those that guess correctly are rewarded. This makes the meeting a social place where people can relax before they start their busy day. The employees feel appreciated and loved by others because they get to share issues that are not related to the job activities before the meetings.
The environment that employees work in influence the level of their motivation.Wal-Mart is aware of this is this is why the company invests in technology that supports the activities of the employees. An example of such technology is the information system that is easily updated from the head office. An example is when the management decides to lower the price of an item and the systems in all the branches is updated and the employees receive updates immediately. According to the response by Wal-Mart employees, this makes their work easier and every employee would be happy to work in such a system.
The response by the Wal-Mart branch manager confirms that Wal-Mart is keen to ensure that the employees feel appreciated and part of the business venture. This is why the human resource management encourages the employees to buy shares from the company. This means that the employees at Wal-Mart get to share the profits that are generated by the company. The employees feel that their efforts determine the success of their company and this encourages them to work more. Additionally, the company gives discounts to the employees when they buy products in the company.Thisis a confirmation that they are not just employees, but partners in the business venture. Such an organization that makes employees feel to be part of the company achieves its objectives of having motivated employees.
According to employees at Wal-Mart, the managers at Wal-Mart are friends to the employees and not bosses who just give instructions. The way the managers relate to the employees and work together as a team is a great motivation to the employees. The employees get inspiration from their managers who are hardworking and very supportive.
The Wal-Mart managers have been keen to ensure that the employees are always challenged. The goals for the employees are set higher and the managers bet with the employees on whether they are to achieve the set goals. The managers are moved from one job to another and each employee has to be changed to a new job any time and this makes the work of the employees unpredictable. The employees in Wal-Mart and especially the managers are always prepared to handle new tasks any time. This makes the work of the employees interesting and is never boring. The employees feel that they have opportunities for professional growth because their leadership skills are sharpened in the company. TheMaslow hierarchy of needs explains that the employees desire to achieve self-actualization by climbing the job ladder, and Wal-Mart gives the employees such hope. This is a great motivation to the employees in the company.
The CEO of Wal-Mart is always keen to appreciate the efforts of the employees. The managers are made to realize that good pay is not the best solution to the employee motivation. The employees need to be respected and appreciated for their efforts. This is why the leaders at Wal-Mart use words selectively to praise the employees. This makes them work harder and give back to the company.
Based on the analysis so far, one can make the observation that Wal-Mart has done very well to motivate its employees. However, there are several areas that can be improved to achieve greater satisfaction of the employees.The company can apply the motivational theories to ensure that the employees are motivated in a better way. This will reduce the employee turnover as well as union strikes that have characterized the recent activities in the company.
First, the company should re-evaluate the salaries that are paid to the employees, to ensure that the salaries match with the earnings that are generated by the company annually. There should be a better pay for the employees even without the intervention of the unions through strikes. By paying better salaries to the employees, the company can be assured that the employees will concentrate more on their job at the company and will not have a reason to search for another job which wastes their time. This will help meet the basic needs of the employees as recommended by the Abraham Maslowhierarchy of needs. The company can extend this by providing means of transport to the employees to and from work. This help them develop self-esteem and gain respect from the society and this makes them proud and work harder to reward the company.
Accoridng to McClelland theory, employees are motivated by the need for achievement, social affiliation and power. Wal-Mart should initiate programs that ensure that the good performing employees are rewarded to show that they have achieved. The employees should receive promotions and serve in new branches and this is how they can satisfy the need for achievement. The company can also have welfare programs that can help meet the needs of the employees such as school fees. By meeting such social needs, the employees feel more associated with the company. The power needs can be satisfied by ensuring that the good performing employees are allowed to serve in certain positions where roles are delegated to them and have some control over others. The top employees can be given vehicles that show their status and this makes them feel that they are powerful in the society.
Incentive theory can be applied at Wal-Mart to ensure that the employees remain motivated. An example is where the employees work overtime and they are paid for the extra hours that they work. This means that the company will not be exploiting the employees because they will enjoy for working overtime.
In conclusion, Wal-Mart has done well in achieving a motivated workforce. However, there are areas that the company can do better. The company should first evaluate the wages that are paid to the employees and ensure that the rewards are fair so that plans can be made to ensure that strikes are eliminated and employees feel happy working for the company. The company can use other tactics that great companies have used to motivate the employees. An example includes providing transport for the employees, constructing houses for the employees as well as paying them bonuses. The company can also ensure that the rewards to the employees are based on performance of the employees. The company should however retain the existing motivational strategies such as issue of shares to the employees as well as discounts for the purchases that are made. The managers should also be supportive to the employees and guide them as they have always done to ensure that the employees feel respected by the company. In addition to this, the company should initiate strategies to ensure that the employees are incorporated in the decision making processes. This will make them feel more recognized by the company. Generally, there are many areas that Wal-Mart can improve on to ensure that it has a workforce with greater motivation to serve the company.
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