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Money-is it the best motivator or not? Good afternoon one and all. I am here to look at some of the arguments surrounding the question -is money the best motivator or not? The primary reason why people have to work is because of money. People are motivated by money the most, and cash is a fair and effective way for management to show appreciation to hardworking staff. It is not the only, it is one of the means to motivate people . money is not always the solution, emotional and pride-based motivation does do the job effectively well.

Basically, I prefer to look into it from different perspective, the perspective of Abraham Maslow. Maslow pyramid is depicted as follows: People join organizations at different levels, and from different sources and experiences. There are interns, juniors, seniors, managers, executives, board members…etc. Therefore, each employee category has to be understood and motivated differently. Basically, managers have to know their subordinates and understand their motivational needs in alignment with each slab of Maslow Pyramid.

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A junior and fresh graduate employee goes to work to satisfy his basic physiological needs, in a majority of cases. He/She works to secure decent and appropriate living (this does not negate that he/she also seek challenging job with ability to innovate and lead. It’s the priority that differs). While, a senior associate with years of experience has a different motivational need, that could belong to the slab of ‘esteem’ or ‘self actualization’.

He is more motivated if he is given the chance to lead an enterprise engagement, or address the board of directors or work within a value system of innovation and confidence. It’s very likely to frustrate that senior associate if you try to motivate him monetarily while disregarding his ability to lead or be exposed. In the same context, it might be very inappropriate to reward a junior engineer with a best of the month employee letter without any financial reward. Both employees have different motivational needs and managers have to address these accordingly.

Both categories of employees might still share some of the motivational needs, both have to be respected at work, and had confidence, however, at different priorities, and this is why a pyramid representation is used to explain Maslow ideas. I tend to think that for a junior employee, the basic needs of decent life are to be met and addressed first. Thus, I would like to conclude by saying •Start by looking around, •Know your people, •Rank them accordingly and •Then motivate them. Thank you.

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