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Essays on Four Behavioural Wage Theories - Need-Fulfilment, Expectancy, Reinforcement, and Justice Theories and Their Influence on Compensation Policies Essay

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The paper “ Four Behavioural Wage Theories - Need-Fulfilment, Expectancy, Reinforcement, and Justice Theories and Their Influence on Compensation Policies” is a  dramatic example of a literature review on human resources.   This essay describes the concepts underscored by four main behavioral wage theories and then contextualizes these theories on contemporary organization’ s compensation policies. Each theory is reviewed before its impact on compensation policies is analyzed and a viable conclusion drawn. But to begin with, the essay introduction tries to place the behavioral theorists’ conception into perspective so as to create a foundation on which the behavioral wage theories are derived. Behavioral scientists usually downplay the value of money as an employee’ s motivator (McKersie & Walton, 1991).

Behaviorists generally prefer to emphasize exclusively on the importance of the measure of challenging the job is the targeted goals and the importance of participative decision-making. They also emphasize the value of employee feedback, the importance of cohesive teams at the workplace and several other non-monetary motivating factors (McKersie & Walton, 1991). Nonetheless, money is still a pertinent element of employee motivation since it is the prime requirement in activating almost all the other motivating factors even those emphasized by behaviorists.

Being a medium of exchange, the amount of money an employee is paid is still a pertinent determiner of how motivated the employees are. While nobody will work only for many of the other motivation factors, people may work only for the money if circumstances require it (Bewley, 1999). Wages are not the number one motivator, but the wages must remain in the motivating factors collection. Let us review each of these wage theories to see how they play out in the organization context. Theory One: Need-FulfilmentThe first of the four theories under consideration is focused on the needs of employees.

The most prominent of these theories are Maslow’ s needs hierarchy, the two-factor theory, the ERG theory, and McClelland’ s needs theory. Te basic idea spanning in these theories is that when an individual employee has pressing needs in his or her personal life, needs that are yet unsatisfied but can be satisfied by the performance of the job and the resultant compensation, then that individual will be in motivated. Maslow identified a hierarchy of personal needs that start at the basal level with physiological needs (sex, hunger, shelter, thirst, and the other basic bodily needs), safety needs (security/protection from any physical or emotional harm), social needs (affection, acceptance, belongingness, and friendship), esteem needs (self-respect, achievement and autonomy internally while status, attention, and recognition are external) and finally at the top of the pyramid, self-actualization needs (to be what one can be, growth, attaining potential and self-fulfillment) (Locke, 1980). McClelland on his part proposed that every individual has three fundamental personal needs existing in ranging balances.

The balance of the needs is what determines how motivated the individual is and he or she attempts to motivate others. These three needs can be listed as the need for achievement (Seeking achievement, seeking attainment of goals and going for advancement), the need for affiliation (friendship, interaction and being liked) and the need for power(seeking authority, status, prestige and influence over others as well as making a social impact) (Locke, 1980).

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